Sadiq Khan begins search begins for Creative Enterprise Zones

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has launched bold plans to establish Creative Enterprise Zones across the capital to ensure artists, creative talent and communities can thrive.

Across London, from Hackney to Peckham, the role of creative communities in revitalising areas has been proven, but often they are displaced from the neighbourhoods they have helped regenerate.

Rising rents, increased property prices and the decline of affordable workspace have all contributed to the pressure on creative communities, with London predicted to lose 30 per cent of affordable creative workspace by 2019. Creative Enterprise Zones are a brand new initiative designed help creatives put down roots and establish themselves in local areas.

The creative industries contribute £42bn to London’s economy every year and account for one in six jobs in the capital. Creative jobs are growing four times faster than the economy average and the majority of jobs will not be automated, providing a major employment opportunity for London1.

Creative Enterprise Zones are one of Sadiq’s key manifesto priorities and will retain and attract artists and new creative businesses. The Mayor will work with boroughs to offer incentives such as permanent affordable workspace and relief from business rates. The plan follows a similar model to Enterprise Zones, areas set up to create the best possible conditions for businesses to thrive.

Sadiq is calling on boroughs to bid for one of ten £50,000 grants to develop their own zones as part of this ground-breaking plan.

A Creative Enterprise Zone research project has already been carried out in Tottenham in the London Borough of Haringey. Here, creative industries have flourished and grown by 127 per cent in the past five years, but there remains pressure on affordable creative space in the area.

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