New company to attract investors

Chris Dixon with business leaders from the Fylde. Pictured is Damien Bourke.
Chris Dixon with business leaders from the Fylde. Pictured is Damien Bourke.
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A NEW body has been set up to attract investment to the Fylde coast.

Blackpool Fylde and Wyre Economic Development Company has launched the Blackpool Bay Area Company to encourage inward investment.

EDC chief executive Damien Bourke, (right) said: “The recent news of jobs cuts at BAE Systems, losses in the public sector and youth unemployment more than anything emphasise the fragility of the Fylde coast economy.

“Blackpool Fylde and Wyre rely heavily on the visitor economy, civil service employment and public sector contracts as well as a small number of large employers.

“Consolidation in the public sector, the low productivity of the visitor economy and vagaries in Government policy on defence and nuclear technologies create huge risks for the economy of the coast.

“We need to do whatever we can to start to redress that balance, and introduce a greater degree of diversity and higher value jobs into the economy. This is why the Blackpool Fylde and Wyre Economic Development Company is launching a brand new approach to encouraging inward investment.”

The new company is about presenting the Fylde coast offer to potential investors and creating aspiration and increased confidence, the connectivity and skills of the work force.

The initial website has been launched at www.blackpoolbayarea.com highlighting areas ripe for investment across the Fylde coast – notably the Hillhouse site in Thornton, Blackpool’s new Central Business District and the National Savings and Investment site in Blackpool, where land is available for development.

The concept has been developed with potential investors and businesses and the organisers found the things which resonated the most with them about Blackpool Bay Area as a place to invest in was: Quality of life, affordability, can do attitude, (the “can do” coast), selling success examples of how other businesses are making it happen.

Mr Bourke added: “It will also tackle some perceptions people may hold about this area.

The project will be given a full launch in December.