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Pinewood Studios' £800m expansion approved by Buckinghamshire Council

An £800m expansion of the studios used for the filming of the James Bond and Star Wars franchises has been approved.

Pinewood Studios, near Iver Heath in Buckinghamshire, submitted plans for a 1.4m sq ft (130,064 sq m) expansion to build 21 new stages, a training hub and a publicly accessible nature reserve.

Buckinghamshire Council has signed off the proposals.

Pinewood Group said the expansion would make it the "biggest studio complex in the world" and create 8,000 jobs.

The group also said it would "inject £640m a year into the UK economy".

"The approved expansion will directly address the continued growth in demand for production accommodation in the UK," it added.

Films, TV series, adverts and music videos have been made at Pinewood Studios for more than 80 years - from Oliver Twist and the Carry On series, to sci-fi thriller Alien and several of the Marvel movies.

An artist's impression of the nature reserve that is part of the plans

As well as expanding the studios, the group will also create a 63-acre nature reserve at Alderbourne Farm, which is north of the studio site.

"The publicly accessible reserve will protect existing habitats and enhance local biodiversity, as well as provide new footpaths, thereby creating a community asset," Pinewood Group said.

Pinewood Studios, pictured from the air in 2015, is due to get a large expansion

The group's corporate affairs director, Andrew M Smith OBE, said: "We're delighted Buckinghamshire Council has approved our plans for the expansion of Pinewood Studios and new nature reserve at Alderbourne Farm.

"This development will provide invaluable resources to the British film and TV sector, consolidate Pinewood's status as the UK's leading production site, deliver significant benefits to our local community and encourage new talent to join the industry."

Buckinghamshire Council has been contacted for comment.




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