Film and TV stars have spoken of their fond memories of working at Twickenham Film Studios and warned of the impact on the industry if they close.

Award-winning actor Sir Ian McKellen said he was “alarmed” that the studios, in the Barons, St Margarets, were up for sale.

Sir Ian, whose roles included Gandalf in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, was one of many high-profile figures from the British film industry who have added their voice to the Save Twickenham Film Studios (STFS) campaign.

Actors Martin Freeman and James Nesbitt have also made videos expressing their concerns.

The studios went back on the market last week after a company that won the bid to buy them pulled out, and the administrator was confident the studios would be retained.

Sir Ian said: “The loss of a film studio in London is very serious for the industry as a whole, for the actors and technicians who work there and of course for audiences who, over the years, have been seeing the wonderful films that have been made in Twickenham.

“I’m alarmed that it should be thought appropriate, at a time when the British film industry is booming artistically, to think we might have one less place to make our films and tell our stories on screen.”

Mr Freeman, who grew up in Teddington, said his early experiences of the studios were when sound director Gerry Humphreys, a family friend, invited him for screenings.

The actor, who shot to fame playing Tim in the Office, recently filmed there for his role as Doctor John Watson in the BBC series Sherlock.

He said: “My association with Twickenham Film Studios has been a long and happy one.

“It’s one of the studios that had a presence in my life and in the lives of many technicians and actors and crew, people all over Britain.

“I think it would be a great shame, a travesty, if they went.”

Actor James Nesbitt, who starred in romantic comedy Cold Feet, added: “To those of you involved in the decision making process I urge you please to reconsider.”

Gerald Krasner, of administrator Begbies Traynor, has insisted the buildings would not be sold for property development and was confident they will remain as studios.

The 45 bidders who previously expressed an interest in buying the site and business will get another chance after they went back on the market last week.

It comes after a purchaser pulled out – losing a £100,000 deposit – on May 18, but Mr Krasner said the decision was due to “personal reasons” and not because of financial concerns.