Pinewood work ‘to start soon’

Early 2015 if per­mis­sion is granted

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - NEWS - By Jack Abell jack.abell@trin­i­tymir­

PINEWOOD Stu­dios is hop­ing to start work on the first phase of its ex­pan­sion plans early next year.

The stu­dio in Iver Heath, home of the James Bond fran­chise, is await­ing ap­proval from South Bucks Dis­trict Coun­cil for the first stage of its plan.

It has asked to build five stages, 10 work­shops, pro­duc­tion of­fices and as­so­ci­ated in­fra­struc­ture and land­scap­ing, and says it an­tic­i­pates a re­sponse from the dis­trict coun­cil by the end of this year.

Sylvie Lowe, Pinewood Green,

of who fought against the scheme as head of the Stop Project Pinewood Group, said: “We need to see what the dis­trict coun­cil has to say about the plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tion.

“We don’t know how the work will take place or what their sched­ule will be, we have to wait and see. It’s not some­thing that we are look­ing for­ward to at all.”

The stu­dios was granted out­line per­mis­sion for the ex­pan­sion fol­low­ing a lengthy bat­tle which started with the con­tro­ver­sial Project Pinewood plans in 2007, which would have in­volved homes, dou­bling as film sets, be­ing built on green belt land.

When that was re­jected by South Bucks Dis­trict Coun­cil as well as by the gov­ern­ment, Pinewood launched plans for the Pinewood Stu­dios De­vel­op­ment Frame­work, which still in­volved build­ing on part of the green belt, with­out the hous­ing plan.

South Bucks Dis­trict Coun­cil re­jected that too after much dis­cus­sion, but this sum­mer, fol­low­ing an ap­peal, the gov­ern­ment gave its per­mis­sion.

Pinewood says the ex­pan­sion is re­quired for it to con­tinue to re­main com­pet­i­tive glob­ally.

If the work be­gins in the first months of 2015 it is ex­pected to be com­pleted by early 2016.

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