Apple is set to begin filming for its streaming channel in studios in Aylesbury amid a Big Tech land grab for TV and film production space across the UK.
The iPhone-maker, a relative late-comer to the streaming battle, is understood to be moving into two logistics facilities at the Aston Clinton development in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire.
California-based production support specialist MBS was drafted in by Apple last year to find studios that could be used for Apple TV+ productions. MBS is understood to have struck a deal with property firm Tritax Big Box for the two facilities, which together provide 170,000 square feet of space for film studios and set workshops.
The move comes as Big Tech firms start to resort to warehouse space amid a major shortage of purpose-built studios in Britain.
Last month, the Telegraph revealed that Netflix was in talks to take 230,000 square foot of logistics space in Enfield.
Property firm CBRE has estimated that companies are hunting for at least 2 million square feet of studio space in the UK, with difficulties in finding such space “negatively affecting the sector’s growth”.
Well-known studio developments have already been snapped up by the streaming giants, with Disney having struck a deal for most of the Pinewood Studios. Netflix also has exclusive access to most of the facilities at Shepperton’s west London studios.
It comes ahead of an expected major escalation in demand for UK production sites. Netflix revealed late last year that it was planning to spend £750m on making TV shows in the UK in 2020, a 50pc jump on the prior year.
The company is among those with significant cash to spend, following a surge in subscriber numbers for all the major platforms during the pandemic. In Britain alone, last year saw households sign up for 12 million more streaming subscription packages.
Shows set in the UK have amassed large audiences over the last year, with hits including Bridgerton and The Crown.