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Sadiq Khan sets out plan for theatre complex in new Thames Estuary creative hub

Sadiq Khan speaking at the opening of Tara Theatre. Photo Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images Sadiq Khan. Photo: Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images
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London mayor Sadiq Khan has unveiled plans to turn the Thames Estuary into a hub for the creative industries, including a new theatremaking complex for touring companies.

The proposals have been drawn up in partnership with the South East Local Enterprise Partnership and span seven London boroughs.

According to the mayor’s office, the proposals would transform the estuary into a “global centre of excellence for the creative industries”.

Khan’s vision for the estuary features seven “large-scale national hubs”, including a theatremaking studio complex based in Bexley.

A spokeswoman for the mayor said the theatre complex was being developed in response to concerns that touring companies do not have access to facilities in which they can develop work and rehearse.

The complex is being developed by a number of partner organisations including Rose Bruford College, in collaboration with Bexley Council, which is keen to make the borough “the home of theatre producing”.

Plans are being influenced by the operating model of Stockholm’s Riksteatern, which has six theatre studios and is designed to be used by touring companies.

Khan said: “London leads the way across the whole of the creative economy. It’s only right that we build on this success and transform the Thames Estuary into a world-class centre for creative production, leading global innovation, developing the talent of the future and cultivating world-changing ideas.”

Plans for the estuary have been submitted to Michael Heseltine, head of the Thames Estuary 2050 Growth Commission.

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