£400,000 bid to turn part of Carriage Works into a digital media center

A £400,000 proposal to turn part of Brunel’s famous Carriage Works into a digital media facility has been submitted to the government.

The new hub, planned for Unit 9 of Carriage Works on London Street, will provide opportunities for young people and attract the best talent to the city, said the chairman of Swindon’s Towns Funds Board.

A separate offer of an additional £100,000 to fund a semi-permanent pop-up market in Wharf Green has also been made to the government.

These businesses are part of the Council’s aim to stimulate regeneration that will ensure long-term economic growth in Swindon.

Create Studios, founded 35 years ago, was chosen by Swindon Borough Council to use the Carriage Works space to develop the next generation of digital media creators.

The agency generates revenue and employment opportunities through professional film and digital commissions for clients like Chelsea FC.

And the proposed hub aims to create opportunities for young people through a range of community projects, trainings and educational programs.

Shahina Johnson with the Create Team © Elmar Rubio for Create Studios

Shahina Johnson, CEO and Artistic Director of Create Studios, said: “The creative industries are the fastest growing sector of the economy, and we want to build on our existing experience to mentor more diverse young people in Swindon into careers. successful in this rewarding industry.

“We are also delighted to have a home where our inclusion projects with a wide range of communities can bring civic pride back to the heart of Swindon after the challenges of the past two years.”

The 5,000 square foot floor provides ample space for digital production and equipment for people to develop their skills.

It is estimated that the facility will allow for 16,000 direct attendee engagements per year and 60,000 live viewers for civic exhibits.

The hub will support 50 additional artists, creatives and specialists and increased revenue will be reinvested to benefit the community.

Richard Newland, Chairman of the Swindon Towns Fund Board, said: “The Board has been truly impressed with the opportunities this digital media community facility will bring to Swindon.

“It will provide opportunities for people wishing to develop their careers in the digital industry and provide training opportunities for young people.”

The government has already approved a £5million bid to bring four more units in the Grade II listed building back into service.

It is part of the government’s overall allocation of £19.5million to Swindon from its Towns Fund.