Nurturing Growth in Lancashire - Marcus Angell
In September, I attended the North Lancs Expo at the Lancaster Brewery. Hosted for the third consecutive year, the Lancaster & District Chamber of Commerce team did a fabulous job of endorsing North Lancashire and promoting the region’s business community.
However, unfortunately, I couldn’t help but feeling that we were hiding away rather than shouting to current and prospective businesses about what an excellent city centre we have in Lancaster.
A well-connected part of the UK that combines a unique culture with a proud regional identity, Lancaster is an attractive city with great transport links. The city’s business community should be using events like the Expo to promote Lancaster to the wider region and country in general. But, before we can do that, we must be bolder in our approach to attracting new business. Imperatively, we need modern, quality office space with complimentary F&B offerings and social activities, if we are going to rival Preston and Manchester.
The Eden Project in Morecambe – due to be completed in 2023 – will bring with it a huge increase in regional jobs and will also increase tourism numbers. We can’t let that opportunity pass us by. But, other than Eden we have only two major employers in Lancaster city centre, with the other large and medium private sector businesses tucked away in corners of industrial estates, or increasingly relocating to Manchester.
Lancaster should be the place where employers are choosing to grow their businesses and where employees are seeking out opportunities for relocation. We need to act now in order to retain the fabulous companies and opportunities the city currently has or we risk sitting back and risk losing them.