Sheffield’s cultural giants are lining up in support of a Channel 4 move to the city.
Sheffield Doc/Fest, which yesterday announced some of the highlights of its 2018 programme, and Warp Films have both written letters of support to the council’s City Growth team, which is leading Sheffield’s bid.
Elizabeth McIntyre, CEO of Doc/Fest, said: “We are hugely supportive of Sheffield’s bid to become home to one of Channel 4‘s creative hubs.
“As one of the world’s biggest documentary, virtual and augmented reality festivals and marketplaces, based in the heart of England, and now in its 25th year, Channel 4 will be given the warmest of welcomes to the Steel City.
“From this move, Sheffield stands to gain a new boost to its profile, to the economy – and to the civic pride of the city.
“What Channel 4 stands to gain is a showcase hub in a place where the independent and vibrant character of the city chimes with C4’s own brand and values.
“Channel 4 is a major partner for Doc/Fest, and we look forward to the prospect of being neighbours to boot.”
Mark Herbert, CEO of Warp Films added: “We believe Sheffield is the right choice for one of the proposed creative hubs.
“This city is unique – a big village full of entrepreneurs and makers with a great spirit and individuality.
“The location next to the train station could not be better – yet the Peak District is just a few minutes away.
“This balance between ‘being connected’ and ‘quality of life’ is why, even though we also have a London office, Sheffield is our home and HQ.
“If Sheffield was chosen it would be a massive boost to the economy and would lead to further growth in the creative and digital industries, building the skills base, which would allow us as producers to keep more of our work in the region.”
Sheffield has been named as one of the favourites for a Channel 4 regional hub by influential trade title Broadcast. The broadcaster is due to meet with interested cities later this spring.
Edward Highfield, director of city growth at Sheffield City Council, said: “Doc/Fest and Warp Films demonstrate the most compelling examples of why Sheffield is an ideal fit for Channel 4. They have put the city on the cultural map, alongside many other makers, musicians and creatives.
“The whole city is backing Sheffield’s credentials as an ideal place for a Channel 4 regional hub as evidenced by the brilliant This is Sheffield video and we’d like to thank Warp and Doc/Fest for their early support.”
Richard Caborn, Chair of Sheffield’s Channel 4 Bid, said: “I’m delighted to have such a strong support from the city’s cultural sector which gives us such confidence moving forward in our ambitions for Channel 4 to move here. We are also working with the public and private sector to establish a National Screen Institute in the city which could do something remarkable for the creative and digital industries, and would complement any move to the city for Channel 4.”