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Leeds creative sector boost with regeneration of printworks next to Southbank

The old Polestar Petty printworks on Whitehall road has been identified as the location of a new world class TV and Film studio in Leeds.

With increasing demand for more space to support the flourishing creative sector in the city, Leeds City Council is working with partners to bring forward a new TV and Film studio to more than double the amount of usable TV and film space. The sector is expanding quickly following key recent announcements of relocations to Leeds by media and TV giants Channel 4 and Sky.

Leeds City Council has approved proposals to move forward with the large-scale site which support up to six new studios and bring wider economic benefits to the city through new jobs and further investment in the area.

The council will take a head lease of the property from Caddick Group, sub-letting the property to a national operator, Versa Studios who own or manage studios across the country via their All Studios company which includes the new Manchester Studios. Versa will link up with existing Leeds studio operator (Prime Studios) who will pay an instrumental role operating and managing the studio complex.

The site is in a key location between the main Film and TV hub in the city on Kirkstall Road and the South Bank, which is already home to over 500 creative and digital businesses. It is less than five minutes from the new Channel 4 headquarters and the railway station and would provide the much-needed space that the sector currently needs to facilitate further growth.

Ben Hepworth, Managing Director, Prime Studios said ' This is a ground-breaking development that will transform the film and TV production landscape in Leeds...the large scale city centre studio development is vital to the continued growth of the local industry and means that for the first time, Leeds will have a world class studio offer that will firmly establish the city as a leading centre for international production. This is an incredible era for the screen industries in the UK, with film and TV spend reaching over £3.1 billion last year and the creative industries as a whole growing at twice the rate of the UK's economy.'

Caddick has also secured Opera North as a tenant in a separate 9,000 sq ft former warehouse on the Polestar site, which sits just 30 m away form where the new studio space will be.

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