We heard from the senior team and board members on a range of issues and opportunities for the Local Industrial Strategy (LIS) which we will be consulting on in the coming weeks.
Chief Executive Jonathan Sharrock gave an update on our ‘year of change’ since the launch of Gatwick 360. Jonathan explained how our innovative projects are making our area ‘the place to be’ for local businesses and that our services are providing more business support than ever with our innovative Escalator programme. We are also helping to prepare businesses for Brexit with more details coming shortly.
Chris Paddock, Director at Hatch Regeneris then explained how we have collaborated to complete an economic profile for the area, which is the most comprehensive research report into urban centres for Coast to Capital ever completed. Issues and opportunities for the LIS include commercial space, affordable housing and digital connectivity in rural areas.
Newly appointed Board member Claire Mason spoke of the importance of telling the story of our area. The Coast to Capital area is facing some critical challenges including stagnating growth and productivity which has not recovered from the economic crisis and we are being left behind by other LEP areas which are growing much faster. Claire also highlighted that you can now send your LIS ideas to email@example.com.
We were delighted to welcome newly appointed Vice Chair Julie Kapsalis to the stage to interview the Head of Rose Review Implementation at RBS, Wincie Wong. Wincie explained the evidence and findings of the Rose Review, reflecting on the challenges for women in business including access to finance, family care and risk awareness. Our Banker in Residence, Vicky Stevens was also welcomed to the stage who talked through her work with the Growth Hub to help support women in business.
Finally, Coast to Capital Chair Tim Wates confirmed Board members and thanked the team. The minutes from the formal part of the AGM meeting will be hosted on our website shortly.