Creative England, the new body that will support the growth of the creative industries in England, has embarked upon its first stage of formation by outlining proposed strategic priorities for film for the first year of operation.
Creative England: A Consultation on Strategic Priorities for Film for 2011/12 sets out the draft film strategy for the coming year, and is now open for responses from the UK film industry. It will be followed by later consultation on proposals for creative industries support.
It specifically proposes three core film priorities:
- Developing creative talent – a strategy across England to develop new creative talent and distinctive voices, in conjunction with the BFI, Skillset, Film London and industry partners.
- Nurturing film culture – a network of cultural programmes delivered at a local level across England, in partnership with the BFI, Arts Council England and other partners, which supports innovative approaches to the exhibition and distribution of film, increases choice and grows audiences. This will include a focus on film heritage, film festivals and increased access to and exploitation of, film archive material.
- Helping to maximise inward investment – a joined up approach to attracting film production and the provision of a nationwide service to support production in partnership with Film London and UK Trade and Investment (UKTI).
In addition, the strategy outlines the importance of:
- Partnership – working with a wide range of organisations and companies from across the public and private sectors, including the BFI, Film London, Skillset, Arts Council England, parallel agencies in the Nations and Local Enterprise Partnerships and central Government, will be integral to Creative England’s work;
- Stimulating innovation – responding to the opportunities presented by the digital age will be a key theme that will apply across all priorities;
- Effective and efficient delivery – Creative England will ensure that overheads are minimised and the value of activities are maximised to the benefit of audiences and the film sector across all the English Regions.
Ed Vaizey, Minister for Culture, Communications and Creative Industries, announced Creative England last year as a new network designed to “build on the success of the Regional Screen Agencies’ (RSAs) following the abolition of the UK Film Council, and “offer the possibility of more focused support for a wider range of businesses;- helping small companies grow, helping new talent establish itself and mobilising public and private investment to grow England’s creative industries’.
DCMS have confirmed that for the year 2011/12, Creative England will have an initial budget for film-related activities of circa £2.5m Grant in Aid and circa £2m Lottery funding from the BFI. Funding for other activities is being sought from public and commercial sources.
The first stage consultation focuses specifically on film, and Creative England is also developing proposals for supporting the growth of the wider creative industries throughout the English regions.
Creative England Chairman John Newbigin, said: “Creative England presents a great opportunity to help creative industries flourish in the English regions. It builds on the work of the Screen Agencies and will continue to support a full range of film activity, cultural as well as commercial. But it will also support talented individuals and independent businesses across the creative sector, not just in film and television.
“Creative England will have hubs in Manchester, Birmingham and Bristol. However, in moving to this new structure, Creative England is emphatic that the network must serve business and talent right across the English regions. The hubs will work with locally-based companies and sector organisations across the country to ensure that support reaches the industry wherever it is needed.
“As part of the move from Screen Agency network to Creative England, we have prepared a plan for support of film-related activity in the year from April 2011 to 2012 and are now inviting views from the industry, both online and in a series of roundtables across the country.’
Creative England is consulting on its priorities for film for 2011/12 only. It will contribute to the review of film policy which is to be led by the Government and the BFI, and will play an active role in implementing the outcomes of that review from April 2012 onwards.
Creative England: A Consultation on Strategic Priorities for Film for 2011/12 is available to download from the Creative England website www.creativeengland.co.uk.
Responses are now invited from the film industry, and can be made online until 31 March 2011 at http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/creativeenglandfilmconsultation.
Creative England industry roundtable events are taking place across England’s major cities, including Birmingham, Brighton, Bristol, Cambridge, Leeds, Manchester, Newcastle and Nottingham.