4 April 2014

Film Friendly City

Brighton & Hove is to be officially designated a Film Friendly City in recognition of the growing importance of the city as a film and television location, and a centre for creative talent and film related businesses.

Councillor Bill Randall, from Brighton & Hove City Council, and Kaye Elliott,  Head of Production Services at Creative England, will sign Creative England’s Film Friendly Charter at a locations event being held on April 9 at the Holiday Inn on Brighton seafront.

The Film Friendly Charter sends out a clear message to the film and TV industry that it is easy and straightforward to film in Brighton & Hove - so helping to attract crews to film here, bringing money into the local economy and supporting local jobs.

Filming is important to the local economy city and the city council plays an important role, helping to encourage and facilitate filming here, and working with partners and local businesses to help develop all aspects of the film related industry in the city.

Work with Creative England www.creativeengland.co.uk  as part of the charter will build on this - details of locations and film crew based in the city will feature on a national database and the charter is being signed at an event for businesses interested in being used as a location.

In addition, ‘crew nights’ are being held for local professionals to build national links and Creative England is setting up a national talent hub in the city. Visit Brighton, the council's  tourism service has prepared a welcome pack for production companies and film crews to assist them in filming in the city, and is encouraging businesses to sign up to the locations database.  Visit Brighton also has a film section and movie map on its website because of the amount of interest filming generates www.visitbrighton.com/your-brighton/cultural/brighton-on-film

A new website is being launched as part of a Film City initiative www.filmcitybrighton.org, lead by the city council and the University of Brighton to boost growth in this area, providing information about film activities, events, tourism and history; business and talent support; and filming in the city.

Councillor Bill Randall, who started work on the Film City project when he was leader of Brighton & Hove City Council, said: “A great deal of work goes on behind the scenes by the council to encourage filming and it is very good news we are to be officially recognised as a Film Friendly City - it lets the industry know we welcome filming here, helps to showcase the wealth of creative talent we have working here and, most importantly, helps to boost the local economy.”

"There is so much going on in Brighton & Hove in relation to cinema and filming and we want to celebrate and build on that.  We have the oldest cinema in continuous use in Britain in the Duke of York's; a film school; plus a film school at the University of Brighton; two film festivals - Cinecity and Oska Bright, which is the only film festival in the world for film makers with learning disabilities; and a million cinema tickets a year are sold in Brighton & Hove.

"We are already used regularly for locations for TV, films and advertising, and there are a lot of people who work in the industry here, along with a big digital industry. By setting up a database of crew, technicians and other specialists we want to encourage film makers to use the wealth of local talent we have here in the city."

Councillor Randall added: "Filming puts Brighton & Hove in the spotlight in front of a national and international audience and that sort of publicity is hugely valuable in boosting tourism and bringing real benefits to the local economy. We believe the benefits of Brighton & Hove being seen on the large and small screen on a frequent basis are the equivalent to millions of pounds of marketing spend."

Rebecca Snook, Production Liaison Manager (South), at Creative England, said: "We have been working closely with Brighton & Hove City Council to promote the city as a fantastic place to film. Not only through sourcing exciting film locations but also supporting crew and facility companies via our networking evenings. The partnership will help ensure that the industry have a smooth and efficient filming experience in Brighton & Hove and encourage more film and TV productions to come back for more."

Creative England and Visit Brighton have organised a free 'drop-in' event for businesses interested in finding out about becoming a film location and joining the national film locations register on April 9 at the Holiday Inn, King's Road, Brighton with presentations at 11am and 2pm. For further information about the event for businesses contact Rebecca Snook on 07711 374116 or rebecca.snook@creativeengland.co.uk .