Bristol can grow and thrive by focusing and supporting the growth of its booming creative industries, says a blueprint from The Creative Industries Federation.

John Kampfner, the Federation’s chief executive explained that the transition to this “clean and exciting” industry was absolutely necessary. Bristol is already home to hundreds of creative enterprises, from video production to art galleries to branding services.

These companies, large and small, should form part of a national push towards productive industries over less environmentally-friendly options like cars or fossil fuels, Kampfner said.

The comments from the Federation come after the local authorities set an ambitious target of 20% annual growth for Bristol’s creative sector. These types of enterprises, including big names like Aardman Animation and the BBC, currently make up 10% of the city’s businesses. This makes the city a key player for creative endeavours in the South West. Plans launched in 2016 hoped to expand the reach of the city even further and improve its international profile

Brexit adds to the need for more creative input from the British, states the Federation’s document. Bristol is rising to the challenge and with new developments such as the buzzing Spike Island and its exhibition space and hub for art and design the city could become a European creative hub.

More developments to house new start-ups and established businesses are planned. The team behind the renovation of the McArthur’s Warehouse site on Bristol’s floating harbour are keen to offer a home to creatives. The “creative industries and professional services are two of the city’s key economic sectors,” their planning application said. These new spaces for media and arts services will offer huge advantages for those looking to tap into the city’s artistic vibe.

Bristol, and the South West of England as a whole, is becoming a busy centre for creative services. The sector provides around 15,900 jobs in the Bristol and Bath area and business is booming. There has been a 106% increase in productivity in operations with a creative slant since 1999.

The Federation’s recommendations for creative sector growth across the country will soon be put forward as a Government Green Paper. This could eventually form the basis of national policy on encouraging fast and sustainable growth in the creative sector. Bristol and its industries are ahead of the curve.

Skylark Media is one of these new creative businesses, offering outstanding corporate communications for social media, online and TV.

Jo Jul 18th, 2017

About Jo Haywood

Jo is the Managing Director at Skylark Media. Before starting Skylark in 2005, Jo ran the BBC Lifestyle website and prior to that directed science documentaries for the BBC and Channel 4. To switch off she can be found on the tennis court, at yoga, or planting trees in the forest garden.