A new funding agreement has been secured to boost the region's position as a film and TV power house.

Subject to agreement by Liverpool Council’s cabinet, more than £830,000 will be pumped into part funding the creation of Screen Alliance North – bringing together the northern powerhouses that are Liverpool Film Office, Screen Manchester, Screen Yorkshire Limited and North East Screen.

The fund from the British Film Institute and the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority, aims to deliver a skills cluster programme which will tackle the skills shortages in the film industry and improve access to high quality training for 18 and over.

The four regional hubs will set out an initial three-year programme which will support people in accessing the industry through training and work experience, with the ambition of ensuring a brand new cohort of professionals who can thrive in the sector beyond 2026.

There are currently 22,000 industry professionals around the four northern regions, and with production levels already returned to pre-pandemic levels there is the need to grow the numbers of people working in this sector.

In 2022/23, Liverpool Film Office attracted and supported 239 productions, generating 1,481 days of filming and bringing an economic boost of £28.8m. It also supported 990 full time equivalent jobs across the city region and created 44 new entrant roles with paid work on a feature film and high-end TV drama.

High-profile TV series filming in 2022-23 include Paramount’s Sexy Beast, BBC’s The Responder, Time, Sky’s Funny Woman and ITV’s Maternal - all of which utilised St Helens sites - as well as Channel 4’s The Gathering and upcoming Amazon series Dead Hot; plus Amazon feature film Heads of State, and the video for Taylor Swift’s hit I Can See You across the region as a whole.

Cllr Harry Doyle, Liverpool Council cabinet member for health, wellbeing and culture, said: “The demand for productions to be filmed across the Liverpool City Region is reaching an all-time high, and shows no sign of slowing down. We need to ensure that we do everything we can to continue to support and develop this region’s incredibly talented workforce, giving everyone – regardless of their background – the opportunity to access training and get their foot in the door of the film and TV world.”

Mayor of the Liverpool City Region, Steve Rotheram, added: “Across the North, areas like ours are proving that long gone are the days when production companies could only look to London to base their studios – because we have all the capabilities, facilities and skills they need right here. This investment is about raising young people’s ambitions and making them realise that they don’t need to move down South to build a career in the film industry.

“Instead, we want to give the next generation access to opportunities to train and develop their skills and ensure we’re retaining the very best talent here in the North.”