Cultural group protests leasing of Good Hope Centre

On 12 August 2015, the Southern African Clothing and Textile Workers’ Union (SACTWU), the Cape Malay Choir Board, The Bo-Kaap Civic Association and the District 6 Working Committee announced their RAAK WYS! campaign, which went against the City of Cape Town’s decision to lease the Good Hope Centre to an international film company. The organisations felt that leasing the venue to film crews, as is planned over the next three years, would mean cultural activities – which are usually hosted at the venue – would be interrupted.

Demand has increased in the Cape for more film production studios as the industry continues to grow and thrive. According to a report by The Voice of The Cape, the City believes this plan will create further employment opportunities and contribute positively to the local economy.

According to a report by The Cape Argus, Garreth Bloor, the City’s mayoral committee member for Tourism, Events and Economic Development, said: “No lease agreement had been entered to date. There is no lease agreement in place. It is being used on a temporary basis until December 2015.” The publication reported that upon visiting the venue at the end of August 2015, they found a production crew making sets for a documentary series on the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb.