A landmark agreement has been struck that could see some of BBC Worldwide’s biggest brands such as Doctor Who and Sherlock feature prominently in a new entertainment resort near London supported by leading Hollywood studio Paramount Pictures.
London Resort Company Holdings, the company behind plans for the £2 billion pound London Paramount Entertainment Resort on the Swanscombe Peninsula, North Kent, has signed a Development Agreement with the commercial arm of the BBC to feature their intellectual property at the resort alongside leading Hollywood studio Paramount Pictures.
On completion in Easter 2020 (with parts open in early 2019), London Paramount will be the first of its kind in the UK and is expected to attract up to 15 million visitors a year – around 50,000 visitors on a typical day. With a wide range of attractions and entertainment, employing some 27,000 people during construction, the planners say there will be something for everyone and expect visitors from all over the UK and the rest of the world to enjoy it on completion.
The partnership agreement would mean that some of the best loved and celebrated programmes and characters to appear on British TV and radio in recent decades could be brought to life at a new world-class entertainment destination.
The Development Agreement is the first step towards a formal partnership between BBC Worldwide and the London Paramount Entertainment Resort, which is currently engaged in public consultation on its plans, with the aim of beginning construction in 2016.
LRCH already has a separate agreement in place with Paramount Pictures, the oldest major Hollywood studio in existence, which will allow the resort to access over 3,000 films including iconic movies such as Mission: Impossible, Star Trek, The Godfather and The Italian Job.
“We are delighted to bring the world’s leading public service broadcaster on board this project,” said David Testa, Director of LRCH. “The BBC has played an instrumental role in shaping the British entertainment industry for nearly a century, creating some of the most iconic and cherished characters on TV and radio. It seems only right therefore that its programmes will be present at the new London Paramount Entertainment Resort, which will combine the glamour of Hollywood with the best of British culture.”
“We’re always looking for opportunities to extend fans’ enjoyment of their favourite shows,” said Stephen Davies, Director Live Events, BBC Worldwide, “and the idea behind this resort is a really exciting way of celebrating the very special place the BBC has in British culture.”
“It is outstanding to be working with a globally recognised brand with such a rich, respected history,” commented Mike Bartok, Executive Vice President Parks & Resorts, Paramount Pictures. “We see London Paramount as a pioneer in the delivery of an outstanding partnership entertainment experience.”
About a 75% stake of London Resort Company Holdings is owned by Kuwaiti European Holdings Company, whose subsidiary KEH Sports Limited runs Ebbsfleet United. The company has invested a “seven-figure sum” in the venture to create the Disney-style theme park on the Swanscombe Peninsula.
Earlier this year, the Kent Messenger reported venture had gained special status allowing it to apply for planning permission directly to central government for the 872-acre Park, bypassing authorities at Gravesham and Dartford borough councils.
• What Doctor Who-themed attraction would you like to see in this Park? Why not let us know below!