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Wicklow in Ireland relaxes rules to boost film studio development

County Wicklow already hosts Penny Dreadful and Vikings, and has relaxed its development funding rules to encourage the growth of its studio infrastructure.

Local authorities have decided film studios will not be subject to Ireland’s development contributions rule, meaning studio infrastructure will be easier to build and will not face additional government charges.

Wicklow is home to both Ashford Studios and Ardmore Studios, which host Vikings (pictured) and Penny Dreadful, respectively. The plan is to stimulate the growth of more filming facilities to help boost the international appeal of County Wicklow, and indeed Ireland as a country.

Removing development contribution costs will save €10,000 per 25,000 sq ft of studio space, according to the Irish Film & Television Network (IFTN).

“Promoting a film industry cluster in the county and putting in place practical supports to develop leading edge studio capacity is a key objective,” said Brian Doyle, chief executive of Wicklow County Council, in comments to the outlet.

Ireland increased its filming incentive programme at the start of this year, and just this week announced the cap on eligible production expenditure will rise to €70m from next year. The move will help build Ireland’s appeal as an international filming location.

“We are ideally situated,” said Morgan O’Sullivan, managing director of World 2000 Entertainment to IFTN. “We have the rural locations side-by-side with the urban, all the assets are virtually on your doorstep.”

Production in Ireland centres on Dublin and County Wicklow to the south of the capital, but efforts are also underway to establish a filming hub in the western city Limerick.

For more on filming in Ireland, see our production guide.


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