BBC's £25million North East spending pledge set to boost new Hartlepool production studios
An announcement by the BBC to invest at least £25million in the North East in the next five years has been welcomed by officials in Hartlepool.
The Beeb will make its biggest investment in region for decades to fund network TV production, the development of talent and support for the creative sector in a new regional partnership.
It is part of a deal with local authorities including Hartlepool Borough Council, who will work with the BBC and independent producers to invest in talent, skills, and infrastructure.
They will also provide funding via regional screen development agency Northern Film + Media to boost the creative sector in the region.
The BBC says the partnership will look to develop close working relationships with local facilities such as Hartlepool’s £18million Northern Film & TV Studio at the Northern School of Art, the North East’s only large-scale commercial film and television production and studio.
Pat Chapman, vice principal at the school, said: “We are delighted with the BBC’s announcement to invest in the creative industries and training in the North East.
"We look forward to a region-wide partnership that will see the region take its rightful place on our screens.”
Studio manager Nina Yoxall added: "As a teenager growing up in Teesside, it didn’t feel possible to pursue a career in the TV industry without making the move to London.
“This investment, alongside the development of new production facilities, such as the studios, will help create jobs and opportunities for our homegrown talent trying to establish their careers in the screen sector.”
Councillor Shane Moore, Hartlepool Borough Council leader said Hartlepool had helped to inspire screen legends like Hollywood directors Ridley and Tony Scott, and the borough continues to be a popular filming location.
He said: “This is a really exciting day for Hartlepool where we have a clear ambition – alongside our friends at the Northern School of Art – to create a major centre for the creative industries.
“Seeing more BBC content coming from the North East is a great thing and certainly welcome news for our talented writers, actors and technicians.”
The BBC says the investment is part of a commitment to do more across the UK by moving increasingly away from its traditional London base.