Arts & Culture
Wearside move marks new episode for North East Screen
March 10, 2023
An agency founded to bolster the region’s television and film sector prowess has moved to new offices.
North East Screen is now based in The Beam, on Riverside Sunderland.
Bosses say the expansion strengthens its commitment to creating a screen industry “centre of excellence” and making the region a magnet for global production companies.
Its move follows FulwellCain Studios’ unveiling of plans to create the Wearside-based Crown Works Studios, which it says would deliver 8450 jobs and pump as much as £336 million into the economy every year.
North East Screen, formally known as Northern Film + Media, has championed the region as a production hub for more than 20 years, with recent support for filming of BBC shows Robson Green’s Weekend Escapes and 24/7 Pet Hospital complemented by similar assistance for episodes of ITV hit show Vera.
With the backing of the area’s combined and local authorities, as well as the BBC and the North East Screen Industries Partnership, the organisation aims to more than double the area’s 2019 share of the UK production market and deliver an annual £88 million economic boost to the region.
Gayle Woodruffe, operations director, said: “The North East is fast becoming a hub for TV and film production, and basing our organisation in Sunderland feels like the right move at the right time to the right location.
“We are very much looking forward to being in the Riverside development, at the heart of the cultural developments in Sunderland.
“We are working hard to link all development, talent, interest, investment and opportunities so that as a region we are best placed to attract feature films and large TV productions to create a thriving and sustainable industry.
“We are keen to work with local production companies and operators who feel they could supply the industry, from taxi firms to caterers, security services and local cafes.”
North East Screen’s Wearside move was supported by Sunderland City Council’s business investment team.
Councillor Graeme Miller, leader of Sunderland City Council, said: “We are absolutely delighted to add North East Screen to the seemingly ever-growing list of organisations realising the potential of doing business in the city.
“As well as positioning Sunderland at the heart of the region’s screen industries, it will also see more jobs brought to the city centre.”