Sadiq Khan unveils Thames Estuary developments

Sadiq Khan unveils Thames Estuary developments

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has unveiled plans for a number of large-scale developments which are set to transform the Thames Estuary into a creative and cultural hub.

The proposal – produced in conjunction with the South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SELEP) – spans seven London boroughs, Kent and Essex, and would constitute one of the largest investments in industrial infrastructure since the creation of Canary Wharf in the 1980s.

Planned developments include London’s largest film studio complex in Dagenham, the UK’s biggest 3D printing centre in Silvertown and a new industrial research laboratory in Kent.

Mr Khan said: “London leads the way across the whole of the creative economy – from fashion to film, design to gaming, performing arts to the visual arts.

“It’s only right that we build on this success and transform the Thames Estuary into a world-class centre for creative production – leading global innovation, developing the talent of the future and cultivating world-changing ideas.

“I urge Lord Heseltine [head of the Thames Estuary 2050 Growth Commission] to recommend our vision and ensure that the creative industries are at the heart of the government’s industrial strategy.”

The Thames Estuary region is currently worth £35bn per year to London’s economy alone.

Mr Khan’s plan aims to make the region an internationally renowned centre for major creative production facilities, as well as boosting job opportunities and investing in a skilled workforce.

Christian Brodie, chairman of SELEP, added: “The creative industries are one of the South East's biggest success stories.

“As the UK competes on the world stage, we must harness the innovation and entrepreneurial spirit of the creative sector – enabling its growth and extending its global reach.

“The South East LEP is looking to build upon the connectivity with London, building a unique, self-sustaining infrastructure to support creative businesses in a way that has not been seen before.”

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