Limerick set to get shiny new film studios
The county of Limerick in south west Ireland is set to get its own multi-million pound film production hub in association with the long-established Ardmore Studios.
Limerick City and County Council has announced the £10m initiative following a call from the Irish Film Board in conjunction with the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht for Expressions of Interest in relation to the provision in Ireland of dedicated audio visual content studio facilities including sound stages and related structures. The proposed studio facilities include the 300,000 sq ft old Dell building in Castleroy and possibly the existing LEDP building in Roxboro.
It is thought the decision has been heavily influenced by the growing success of production hubs such as Belfast, which has had a marked impact on the local economy as major productions such of Game of Thrones make it their base.
Limerick has been Ireland’s City of Culture this year, so the news marks a significant legacy for the audiovisual industry.
Conn Murray, chief executive of Limerick City and County Council, said: “There is a clear and urgent demand for large scale studio space and support buildings in Ireland, and in our analysis, many of the pre-conditions necessary for the creation of studios already exist in Limerick.
“There are a number of suitable sites and buildings in Limerick that can be upgraded and refurbished to the high spec standards that the industry requires and as the core infrastructure is in situ, this can happen over a short time period.
“From our research in Northern Ireland, it is evident that success is based on government support, direct investment and commitment given to the vision of those involved. We can commence this project with the existing highly skilled craftspeople from inside and outside the mid-west region and tap into the rich resource of our graduates that are coming out of our third level institutions with film and media qualifications that will support the long term success of the industry.”
Murray concluded: “We’re delighted to be working with Ardmore Studios on this concept to develop the infrastructure for large film production in Limerick and create major sustainable employment as a result.”