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From Dagenham film studios to East Bank in Stratford, new projects will help ‘fulfil east London’s potential’, says Sadiq Khan

PUBLISHED: 12:56 19 August 2020 | UPDATED: 12:56 19 August 2020

Barking and Dagenham Council leader Cllr Darren Rodwell discussing the Dagenham East film studios project with Deputy Mayor for culture and the creative industries Justine Simons and the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan. Picture: Be First

Barking and Dagenham Council leader Cllr Darren Rodwell discussing the Dagenham East film studios project with Deputy Mayor for culture and the creative industries Justine Simons and the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan. Picture: Be First

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Projects like the Dagenham East film studios and East Bank in Stratford can help fulfil the “huge potential” of those areas, London’s mayor has said.

An artist's rendition of the film studios planned for Dagenham East. Picture: Be FirstAn artist's rendition of the film studios planned for Dagenham East. Picture: Be First

Sadiq Khan said “snobbery” against east London and decades of neglect of that part of the capital was disadvantaging its communities, but major projects under way and other plans in the pipeline would help change that.

“One thing that really annoys me is this snobbery against east London,” Mr Khan told this paper.

“My concern, and I share this with (Barking and Dagenham Council leader) Darren Rodwell, is too many east Londoners have got huge potential but they’re not getting that helping hand to have that potential fulfilled.

“We want to work with the councils to be that helping hand.”

A computer generated image of the BBC's East Bank outpost. Picture: LLDC, Allies & Morrison, Ninety90A computer generated image of the BBC's East Bank outpost. Picture: LLDC, Allies & Morrison, Ninety90

Mr Khan met with Cllr Rodwell during a visit to Barking and Dagenham on Friday, August 14, when he toured the site of the planned film studios - which will be the capital’s biggest - after it received the green light from City Hall last week.

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It’s estimated the studios will create 1,200 jobs and contribute £35m each year to the local economy.

The project’s approval followed recently-submitted plans to create the UK’s largest wholesale market at Dagenham Dock by relocating the historic Billingsgate, Smithfield and New Spitalfields markets to the former Barking Reach power station site.

Meanwhile in Newham, an east London cultural and educational hub is being developed at East Bank at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, which includes new buildings for Sadler’s Wells dance theatre, the Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A), the BBC and a new London College of Fashion campus.

Mr Khan has also been consulting on plans to relocate City Hall to The Crystal building in the Royal Docks.

He said these proposals and projects, as well as development at Canary Wharf and elsewhere, demonstrated that “the future is east” for London.

“It’s not being anti-west, or anti-north or anti-south, but London is moving east - there is so much potential with brownfield sites,” he said during his visit to the film studios site.

“I’m really excited about not just the development at Dagenham East, but this will help create the ripples we need for all of east London to have its potential fulfilled.”


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