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22.10.04
A jobs boost for Cornwall

Cornwall's film-makers and screen industries are set to benefit from major investment under a new project invested in by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) under the Objective One Programme for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

Over the next 3 years, more than £1.8 million (of which £914,238 is coming from the ERDF), will be ploughed into bolstering industry growth and sustainability in the area. The new project will be administered by Cornwall Film. Key partners in this project are Regional Screen Agency South West Screen, the South West Regional Development Agency, Business Link Devon and Cornwall, Creative Kernow, UK Film Council, Cornwall Enterprise and Cornwall County Council.

The project aims to support 45 Cornish media companies, create the equivalent of 174 full-time jobs and generate £6.9 million of additional turnover. It will focus on business support, working in partnership with organisations like Business Link, the Regional Development Agency and Cornwall Pure Business.

The scheme will run for a set three year term, during which time it is intended to kick-start the sector, attracting inward investment, developing local media businesses and boosting national and international exports. Funding will be reduced from 2006 as the industry in the area becomes increasingly self sufficient.

Alongside the financial support, industry mentors will work closely with local media businesses to develop products and access markets. Business Link, Finance Cornwall and the South West Investment Group (SWIG) will also be involved in this part of the process.

Key goals of the scheme are to bring local businesses to market, stimulate demand and boost businesses' own marketing. Specialist Cornish companies will also become more able to provide specialist services to national and international film and television. Cornwall is already one of the UK's main providers of aerial camera units and large-scale sea shoots.

The new project's investment fund aims to stimulate local development and production in television, new media and film. It is also hoped that around 50 productions will be attracted to the area, bringing in more than £7.8 million to the economy, providing work and an increased turnover for a range of local businesses.

The project is currently advertising for a new chairperson and board members. This board will go on to appoint two staff by the end of November. The project aims to launch in January 2005.

Caroline Norbury, Chief Executive of South West Screen said: "Cornwall has huge potential to become even more of a media centre than it is at present. Now that this latest round of investment has been approved, existing businesses in the area, as well as new start-ups, will be given all available support to be highly successful. We shall be working closely with the other agencies involved to ensure a solid infrastructure is set up and businesses in Cornwall can grow."

For press information please contact:

Peter Jones, South West Screen
Email: peter.jones@swscreen.co.uk
Tel: 0117 952 9971

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Editor's notes:

South West Screen is the Regional Screen Agency leading the development of film, television and digital media in the South West. South West Screen is funded by the UK FILM|COUNCIL and the South West Regional Development Agency.

Cornwall Film administered almost half a million pounds of ERDF investment between September 2001 and October 2004. The fund invested in over 50 projects, including screenplay development and short film production in Cornwall.

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Sue Wolstenholme
Objective One Communications
Objective One Partnership Office
Castle House
Pydar Street
Truro TR1 2UD
Mobile: 07973 813647
Telephone: 01579 370991


lmroberts@cornwall.gov.uk

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