Film company joins march to Park Hill

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A Sheffield film company is among seven new firms preparing to move in to the city’s revamped Park Hill flats as the ambition of forming a ‘cultural hub’ for residents and businesses begins to take shape.

The businesses - all creative or technology companies - have signed deals worth £2 million, adding to £18 million in investment pledged by developer Urban Splash to drive the scheme forward.

One of the biggest names moving into new offices at Park Hill is Warp Films.

The studio - behind films and TV series such as Four Lions and This Is England - is currently based at The Workstation but has bought outright a mezzanine-style unit, allowing the company to expand.

There will be space for a dedicated screening room, as well as more areas for writers and other creative staff to work on productions.

Mark Herbert, head of Warp Films, said: “We’re very excited about being up there, it feels very permanent. We’re planning quite an ambitious fit-out in the office, but I want to be in there as soon as possible - I’d move there tomorrow!

“There is an independent side of Sheffield that’s really flourishing - areas like Kelham Island and Division Street - and we need to encourage it.

“I think Park Hill will help to define that. The next thing they need is a place to get a coffee, or a restaurant or bar. That would attract people up there and make a killing.”

The debate over the flats’ future has been hotly contested since awarding them Grade II* listed status protected them from demolition. Delays on site have triggered further criticism - but Mark said he was firmly in the supporters’ camp.

“It’s one of the most amazing buildings I’ve ever seen. Even if it was once rough social housing, it’s like anything, you can have a rough school and it can be transformed by the people in it. People need to get behind the development now. For us, moving to Park Hill cements us to the city.”

There will be room for four more firms after the seven move in this autumn. Over 180 new apartments are also on the way.