A new development scheme is hoping to turn East London into an esports hub.
Silvertown, located in the Royal Docks, will include a 200,000 sq ft space that aims to attract young innovators such as developers, designers, publishers, manufacturers and gamers, including those within esports.
It’s being billed by developers as an innovation hub – or ‘eSports Dock’ – and is located minutes from the new Elizabeth line at Custom House station.
It’s part of a £3.5bn development project approved by the Government that promises new commercial and residential space, up to 3,000 new homes and the creation of more than 20,000 jobs.
The Silvertown Partnership – a consortium consisting of Chelsfield Properties, First Base and Macquarie Capital – is working with the Greater London Authority and London Borough of Newham on the project.
Developers hope to make the area “the next Shoreditch” or Soho – a new arty farty innovation centre. They say that eSports Dock will help boost esports in London with ‘high quality studio and production facilities, testing and practice spaces, as well as collaborative work spaces allowing co-creation and collaboration across sectors and disciplines’.
Ben Reed, head of brand at The Silvertown Partnership said: “Esports is a sector experiencing explosive growth, however London doesn’t have a dedicated home for businesses in this sector to come together and grow.
“Royal Docks is already well positioned with ExCel London attracting thousands of fans for Comic Con and Game Mania; paving the way for Silvertown to create an eco-system of gamers, publishers, content creators and distributors enabled by fast connectivity and the latest technology.”
Of course, London’s Royal Docks is home to the MCM London Comic Con, which recently attracted more than 130,000 visitors and hosted the ESL UK Premiership finals. The Royal Docks was also used for the announcement of the World Esports Association (WESA).
James Dean, MD of ESL UK, added: “London has a big part to play in the growth of esports. The Royal Docks is already an area with a firm esports foundation and the plans at Silvertown will give this a big boost, accelerating the growth of esports and reaching as many gamers as possible around the world.”
Dom is an award-winning writer who graduated from Bournemouth University with a 2:1 degree in Multi-Media Journalism in 2007.
As a long-time gamer having first picked up the NES controller in the late ’80s, he has written for a range of publications including GamesTM, Nintendo Official Magazine, industry publication MCV as well as Riot Games and others. He worked as head of content for the British Esports Association up until February 2021, when he stepped back to work full-time on Esports News UK and as an esports consultant helping brands and businesses better understand the industry.