Film studios: all change!

Recently announced changes to local film studios show how the landscape is constantly moving and rapidly expanding. Or should it be contracting, given Netflix’s share losses?

In any case, Pinewood announced that its expansion plan, which received the green light from planning only last December will be changed. The “training centre and visitor attraction” is being dropped in favour of… more studio space.

Only last week experienced studio operator Stage Fifty announced plans to make its temporary planning application at the Wycombe Air Park in Booker permanent (for 5 years). This area was marked in the 2019 Local Plan as a strategic employment area (Policy HW15). The studio proposers are claiming that the plans are for a “world-class sustainable” film studio that would “establish High Wycombe as a hub for global film and TV production”. Does that sound familiar?

Both cases show that 1) planning proposals are readily altered or even made (partially) retrospectively and 2) there is likely to be more local studio space available, further smashing the windows of the economic case for a film studio in Marlow’s Greenbelt.

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