Michael Gove and MP Jackie Doyle-Price announced a £5 million boost for Thurrock today during a visit to the High House Production Centre in Purfleet.

The first phase, starting in 2016, is promised to create up to 530 homes and 200 jobs.

The money is promised for the regeneration of the town centre in Purfleet and is linked to investing in new film, TV and media studio development.

The Chief Whip made the announcement during a visit to the new High House Production Centre in Purfleet.

The money is coming as part of a government-announced Growth Deal for the South East – an investment of £46.1 million between 2016 and 2021. The South East Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) – a body set up by the government to oversee the growth of new business and ‘regeneration’ of the South East – will oversee the funding being rolled out.

Video 1: Michael Gove talks about how the £5m funding for Thurrock investment is 'not the end of the story' for regeneration of the region.



MP Jackie Doyle-Price said: “I’m delighted. A lot of people in Thurrock are concerned about grand plans, and this has been a long time coming – but the money that the government has agreed makes it clear that we will get this investment at long last.”

Council Leader John Kent said: “It isn’t for me about a film studio, it’s about breathing life into an existing community. The plans for Purfleet, including the television and film studios and 3,000 homes are breath-taking and today’s announcement brings it a step closer – it should be something that excites everyone in the borough.”

The LEP Chair Peter Jones said: “The Growth Deal builds on the earlier investment announced for transport infrastructure, reaches right across the South East from the Thames Gateway to our coastal towns and attracts new private sector support.”

Government chief whip Michael Gove added the proviso that: “Of course, this investment will need a Conservative government - and MP Jackie Doyle-Price in place - to see it goes through.”

When pressed Mr Gove would not confirm that the promised funds would materialize if a Conservative government was not in place past the general election.