Industry Feedback Needed To Make Filming In The UK Easier

Posted on 7 August 2014

The Department for Communities and Local Government has drafted new legislation that will make it quicker and easier for productions to gain filming permissions in interior and exterior spaces.

Filmmakers and those working in the industry are being asked to read over these amends and submit their feedback to ensure it is fit for purpose. The hope is that these changes will help address the need to assist the world-class, purpose-built studios with temporary stage space to increase capacity and reduce any red-tape hindering interior and exterior filming in the UK.

Filming on location generates significant investment into England’s regional economies. Depending on a production’s size and budget, they can spend up to £42,000 per day on everything from local caterers, security and taxi firms to hotels and restaurants. It also helps drive tourism into the regions; Dorset-shot Broadchurch caused VisitDorset’s web traffic to double following its release in September last year.

Productions that choose to shoot on location enjoy huge benefits in terms of cost and authenticity but applying for planning permission for filming as it currently stands can be a complex process.

Thankfully, The British Film Commission has been leading the way to find a solution for production companies that ensures any changes to legislation will not impact negatively on local businesses, residents or on the environment.

If you’re a filmmaker now’s the time to have your say. To ensure that the proposed changes to this draft legislation are appropriate and suit the needs of our ever-growing industry, read the full document on planning permission and start noting down your comments. The section on filming starts on page 35, with crucial sections on the stringency of size, height, duration and other relevant points beginning on paragraphs 2.83 and 2.84.

Instructions on how to respond and make your opinions head can be found on page 6. You have until 26th September to respond, so please do make sure to get your comments in by then.

It’s fantastic that Government, having recognised the economic and cultural benefits of film and television production both on a national and local level, has listened to the industry’s concerns on this important issue. It’s now up to the industry to make sure the proposed changes really work.