Hounslow makes Creative Enterprise Zone list

Hounslow has been named one of London’s first Creative Enterprise Zones.

One of Sadiq Khan’s key manifesto commitments, Creative Enterprise Zones aim to create more than 3,500 new jobs and 1,000 new education, training and job opportunities for local residents, along with more than 40,000 square meters of new affordable workspace.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, today announced the capital’s first Creative Enterprise Zones as part of a groundbreaking initiative to support artists and creative businesses, and develop skills and jobs for Londoners.

Lambeth, Croydon, Lewisham, Haringey, and Hackney Wick will be awarded a share of more than £11m to boost creative communities.

This new initiative, one of Sadiq’s key manifesto priorities, will protect the creative sector in the capital, increase affordable spaces for artists and entrepreneurs, and boost job and training opportunities for local people. Across London, creative communities have demonstrated their important role in revitalising areas, but over time, they can find themselves priced out of the neighbourhoods they have helped regenerate.

A total of 25 boroughs applied for the funding, showing the appetite for this brand-new idea, with the six winning zones chosen due to their commitment to creating local jobs and increasing affordable workspace. The funding towards the new Creative Enterprise Zones includes more than £4m from the Mayor’s Good Growth Fund. Working with the London Economic Action Partnership (LEAP), the Mayor’s Good Growth Fund is designed to support sustainable and inclusive growth, and community development across the city. Each of the Creative Enterprise Zones have outlined how they will collectively leverage more than £30 million of investment in order to deliver their ambitious plans.

The creative sector is growing faster than any other sector in the UK economy and provides one in six jobs in London. During a time of uncertainty surrounding Brexit, the Creative Enterprise Zones will provide investment and support for creative businesses in the capital, ensuring that London remains one of the most entrepreneurial and innovative business centres in the world. The six Creative Enterprise Zones will aim to generate tens of millions of pounds of growth, create more than 3,500 new jobs and support more than 1,000 local people into education, training and job opportunities. The zones will also deliver more than 40,000 sqm of new affordable workspace for creative businesses and entrepreneurs, with the long-term creation of additional affordable space embedded into their planning process.

Each Creative Enterprise Zone will take on its own distinctive character and focus, from film and TV to start-up business support. Hounslow will leverage its role as London’s centre for TV and film.

Great West Creatives aims to strengthen networks, and engage multi-national local businesses such as Sky, Disney, Paramount, to work closer with local creative and digital companies to boost opportunities. It will also deliver specialist skills training and freelance and SME business support to ensure local residents, especially young people, and students from University of West London, have a clear route and access to opportunities in the creative sector, and build on London’s hub for TV and Film production by unlocking new affordable production and studio space.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “Culture and creativity are vital to the success of our city, making the capital a place where people want to live, do business in and visit. But it can be difficult for artists and creative businesses to stay in an area as it develops, and that’s why it’s so important we give the industry the support it needs.

“I’ve been clear that London is open for business and talent and Creative Enterprise Zones will help the capital remain a creative and forward-looking city for the future. These new zones – which were a key manifesto commitment – will create much-needed affordable workspace, turning these areas into creative hubs and providing job and training opportunities that will ensure that the local community benefits from growth. They will ensure that artists and entrepreneurs, regardless of background, will be given the support they need and become our creative leaders of the future.”

Deputy Mayor for Culture and Creative Industries, Justine Simons, said: “London is overflowing with talent and imagination, with the creative influence of our artists felt in every corner of the city. But our creative workforce is under threat as the rapid pace of development often pushes them out of the neighbourhoods they have helped to revitalise.

“Creative Enterprise Zones are a bold new idea that will disrupt this cycle to deliver good, socially inclusive growth – with permanent, affordable production and workspace for artists and entrepreneurs, new jobs, skills and training for the local community.”

Councillor Sue Sampson, Hounslow Council Cabinet Member for Leisure Services, said: “It’s an exciting time ahead for Hounslow’s artists and small businesses who will have the opportunity to flourish thanks to this initiative. As one of just six boroughs to receive this funding, we very much look forward to seeing the creative sector shine in Hounslow, providing more jobs for our talented young people, opportunities for new businesses and room for growth and innovation.”

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