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Pinewood expansion plans rejected

South Buckinghamshire District Council has refused Pinewood Studio's £200m planning application for a 100,000sqm increase in studio capacity on greenbelt land. Pinewood is expected to appeal the decision.

In February 2013, PSNEurope reported on yet another attempt by Pinewood to build a studio complex designed to cope with the projected increase in demand for film and TV facilities in the UK. Once again Pinewood’s hopes have been dashed as in a meeting on 15 May, the South Buckinghamshire District Council (SBDC) Planning Committee refused Pinewood’s £200m proposal, which would have seen building take place on Iver Heath, which is considered to be green belt land. In a statement released on Pinewood’s website, Ivan Dunleavy, chief executive of Pinewood Shepperton said: “This is a disappointing decision by the local planning authority. It is hard to believe, given the country’s economic difficulties that SBDC would turn down a £200m project creating 3,100 jobs in the vibrant and growing film and television sectors. The company remains committed to the Pinewood Studios development framework and we will be studying the decision with our legal and planning team and expect to appeal the decision to the Secretary of State.” As previously reported the Pinewood Studios Development Framework (PSDF) would add 100,000 square metres of new studios, stages, streetscapes, workshops and support premises to the existing Pinewood site. The company says this will “make a major contribution to achieving Government priority objectives to grow the UK’s creative industries, promote growth and create new jobs.”