Opportunity Hertfordshire- A spotlight on Film and TV
Delegates at Hertfordshire Local Enterprise’s Annual Conference –Spotlight on Film and TV - heard that the county was at the epicentre of the growth in the TV and film industry, and its rapid expansion could see the sector’s employment more than treble over the next decade.
The LEP’s Annual conference was broadcast live from Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden and brought together senior leaders and industry figures from Hertfordshire, Hollywood and beyond to identify how best to stimulate future investment, drive local job creation and spearhead skills development.
Its first panel discussion ‘Boomtime for Hertfordshire’ focused on the recent scale of investment into the film and TV industry and featured. Dan Dark, OBE, Executive Vice President, Warner Bros. worldwide studio operations; Caroline Cooper, COO, Sky Studios; Dean Russell MP for Watford; Deirdre Wells OBE, CEO, Visit Herts and Go To Places; Cllr Morris Bright MBE, Chair, Board of Directors, Elstree Studios; Leader, Hertsmere Borough Council and David Conway, Chief Financial and Operations Officer, ITN.
The second panel discussion ‘Mind the Skills Gap’ brough together educators from across the Higher and Further Education sectors to debate the huge range of skills required to support the industry and how local people can benefit. It featured Chris Mitchell, Principal of Elstree Screen Arts Academy, Emily Stillman, Senior Vice President, Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden, Adrian Hawkins OBE, Chair, Skills Advisory Panel, Hertfordshire LEP; Prof. Julie Newlan MBE, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Business and International Development, University of Hertfordshire; Phil Healey, Dean, School of Creative Arts, University of Hertfordshire and Gill Worgan, Principal and Chief Executive, West Herts College.
The conference aimed to put the spotlight firmly on the county’s film and TV sector which is fast becoming the new ‘Hollywood’, and is part of Hertfordshire LEP’s sector focus in its Economic Recovery Plan. The LEP recently commissioned an independent report into the value of the industry and is building an industry-led taskforce to develop an Action Plan which aims to capitalise on recent investment successes, helping to identify what will be needed to enable the industry to grow sustainably as well as leverage its economic, social and environmental value.
The debates focused not just on studio expansion, skills shortages and employment opportunities, but also on supporting the industry’s ‘long tail’ which includes supply chains, the wider business network and tourism potential.
Decade of delivery
Opportunity Hertfordshire Conference 2021
Up to 13,000 new jobs could be created in Hertfordshire’s booming film and TV sector, it was announced at Hertfordshire Local Enterprise’s Annual Conference –Spotlight on Film and TV.