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Major new film and TV studio campus to be built in Stirling

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A major new film and television studio campus is to be created in Stirling.

Stirling Studios will become one of the biggest media hubs in Scotland and is expected to pave the way for thousands of high-skilled jobs.

An independent economic impact assessment has estimated the project will create more than 4,000 jobs over 25 years, with the positive benefits filtering down the wider supply chains.

The development will be built on former Ministry of Defence (MoD) land at Forthside.

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Pic: Stirling Council/Christopher Jackson Drone Videography and Photography

Stirling Studios. Pic: Stirling Council/Christopher Jackson Drone Videography and Photography
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Pic: Stirling Council/Christopher Jackson Drone Videography and Photography

Announcing the plans on Wednesday, the chief executive of Stirling Council said the site and buildings could fit well with the needs in the sector.

Carol Beattie said: “In a previous role as director of creative industries for Scottish Development International, I knew there was still an opening for more production space in Scotland.

“At that point, I spent time in London speaking to the British Film Commission and studio operators such as Pinewood, Three Mills and Warner Brothers to understand the specifications of a good site.

“When I saw the unique buildings and location at Forthside, I considered it to be a fantastic fit, which has since been confirmed through our close consultation with the industry, including Screen Scotland.”

Stirling Studios. Pic: Whyler Photos/Stirling Council
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(L-R) Isabel Davis, executive director of Screen Scotland; John Lamont MP, UK government minister for Scotland; Stirling Council leader Chris Kane; and Carol Beattie, chief executive of Stirling Council. Pic: Whyler Photos/Stirling Council

Experts have assessed there is currently 100,000 sq ft of studio space and 110,000 sq ft for production, logistics and office space at the site.

Some of the existing buildings on the site will be retained and refurbished, while the remainder of the land will be redeveloped and cleared in line with existing plans.

The site has already been used as a filming location.

Pic: Whyler Photos/Stirling Council
Image:
Pic: Whyler Photos/Stirling Council

Pic: Whyler Photos/Stirling Council
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Pic: Whyler Photos/Stirling Council

Feedback on the plans also highlighted the many benefits of Stirling itself, including its surrounding scenery and natural landscapes, its central location, excellent transport links, and the opportunities to increase Scotland’s talent pool through partnership working with the likes of the University of Stirling and Forth Valley College.

The MoD land was snapped up by the local authority for £5m through the Stirling and Clackmannanshire City Region Deal – a £214m partnership between Stirling and Clackmannanshire councils, the University of Stirling and the UK and Scottish governments.

This ambitious project has been supported by repurposing a proportion of the £19m grant secured by the council from UK government’s levelling up fund for the redevelopment and regeneration of Forthside.

Stirling Studios. Pic: Stirling Council/Christopher Jackson Drone Videography and Photography
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Pic: Stirling Council/Christopher Jackson Drone Videography and Photography

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Stirling Council leader Chris Kane said: “We have an opportunity to embed an industry in our city which will bring thousands of high-skilled jobs, put us on a global creative map and deliver a significant economic boost to the region over many decades.

“By making innovative use of the existing buildings on a former military site, we are creating a studio campus that will provide everything film producers need to meet demand in a thriving sector.

“Students in our schools, our college and our university will be able to pursue creative careers right here in Stirling that in the past would have meant having to consider leaving to chase opportunities elsewhere.”

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John Lamont, UK government minister for Scotland, said he was “delighted” that £24m of Westminster funding has helped the council with its ambitions.

He added: “The jobs and economy boosting regeneration that will follow will provide fabulous opportunities for the region.

“The UK government is committed to making sure that Scotland and the wider UK remains an attractive location for film and high-end TV productions.

“That is why we have supported our world-leading creative industries with £1bn in tax reliefs. In total we are investing £72m in levelling up Stirling and Clackmannanshire and more than £3bn across Scotland.”

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