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18/02/2005

Filming boom continues in Liverpool

Liverpool's film and television industry is continuing to boom - bucking the national trend.
New figures from the city council's Film Office reveal they organised the equivalent of 596 days of filming during 2004.
It is the second highest figure since the department was formed in 1989 - and just short of the record 612 days of filming which took place during 2003.
The number of enquiries from producers rocketed by 30% at a time when feature film production nationwide has dropped by a third.
Cllr Warren Bradley, Executive Member for Leisure and Culture, said: "Liverpool has a fantastic reputation within the film industry for providing great locations and expert support for film makers.
"As a result, we are seeing an unprecedented level of interest in using Liverpool for making television series and feature films.
"The challenge now is to use Objective One money to make sure people in Liverpool develop the skills to get jobs on local productions."
The city's popularity as a tourist destination also led to an increase in the number of overseas travel programmes coming here to film, particularly from Asia.
Over the past year, Liverpool has also become popular with advertisers.
The Film Office estimates that hundreds of people were employed on productions, giving a multi-million pound boost to the local economy and benefiting businesses such as hotels, taxi firms and caterers.
Film Office manager Lynn Saunders says the future is looking good: "We've earned a reputation as a film friendly city and every week we receive enquiries from producers both home and abroad.
"I am confident that 2005 we will see a big rise in the number of enquiries, and further development of the film industry locally."
Alice Morrison, Chief Executive of North West Vision, which works to promote Liverpool and the rest of the north west as a film location, added: "The film and television industry is big business and we are determined to win that business for Liverpool.
"Liverpool has an excellent Film Office, wonderful locations and funding to invest in television programmes and films."
(GB)
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