Star Wars Force Awakens Image: Disney

The latest blockbusters in the James Bond and Star Wars franchises have provided a welcome boost to the profits at Pinewood Studios.

Pre-tax profits jumped 13.2% to £4.3 million in the first six months of its financial year, with operating profits increasing from £2.5m to £7m. Revenues dropped slightly from £38.5m to £38.2m.

Both Spectre and Star Wars: The Force Awakens were filmed at Pinewood's studio in Buckinghamshire. Star Wars: Rogue One, which will be released next December, has already started production at the studio. Pinewood is Europe's largest film studio and is planning to expand its business in order to compete with bigger Hollywood studios.

Construction of the first phase of its expansion is due to be completed in June 2016.

"The first six months of the year have maintained the positive momentum reported in our full year results in June 2015,” said Ivan Dunleavy, chief executive.

“Productions based at the studios during the period include the year's biggest films Spectre and Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens.”