Lancashire Enterprise Partnership to lead senior delegation at Convention of the North conference
The Lancashire Enterprise Partnership (LEP) has confirmed it will be leading a delegation of county representatives at the forthcoming Convention of the North conference in Manchester on January 25th.
With Levelling Up Secretary Michael Gove MP and Shadow Secretary of State Lisa Nandy MP due to be in attendance, the Convention of the North will bring together business, political and civic leaders to discuss the challenges facing the North.
This year’s event will also feature an investor zone, allowing individual northern regions such as Lancashire the chance to present investment opportunities to the private sector.
The LEP’s Chief Executive Andy Walker will be spearheading the Lancashire delegation, joined by Phillippa Williamson, Leader of the Lancashire County Council, and Rachel McQueen, Chief Executive of Marketing Lancashire.
Other key private and public sector organisations, including the county’s universities, large employers, and major institutions such as the AMRC North West, will be represented.
Andy Walker, who also leads business growth and innovation strategy for Lancashire County Council, said: “In the same way the county has recently united behind the Lancashire 2050 initiative, this year’s Convention of the North will see both private and public sector partners coming together from across the county to highlight the economic, cultural and political importance of our region. It will also give us the chance to make the case for more immediate investment, and more strategic long term support, directly to government.
“In addition, we will be taking the opportunity promote the incredible commercial opportunities which Lancashire has to offer. This will include not only our world-leading aerospace and advanced manufacturing strengths, but also emerging and fast growth sectors such as cyber, healthcare, low carbon energy, future mobility, electech, and the digital industries.”
County Councillor Phillippa Williamson, Leader of Lancashire County Council said: “Lancashire is at an exciting stage in realising our collective potential and transforming the local economic outlook. Through Lancashire 2050 public, private and third sector partners are working as a team to achieve our ambitious shared goals. Our county has a huge amount to offer for those living here and as an investment prospect, and our plans for levelling up will enable our county to thrive.”
A core theme which will underpin Lancashire’s pitch to policymakers and investors will be the county’s rapidly growing innovation ecosystem which is anchored by global businesses like BAE Systems and Westinghouse, and supported by world-leading R&D from Lancashire’s universities.
The AMRC North West at Samlesbury, the RedCAT centre in East Lancashire, UCLan’s Engineering Innovation Centre, and Lancaster University’s Health Innovation Campus in Lancaster, all of which support innovation within the SME sector, will further be showcased, as will the success of co-working technology hubs such as Fraser House (Lancaster), Strawberry Meadows (Chorley) and The Landmark (Burnley).
The arrival of the National Cyber Force at Samlesbury, the benefits of transformational projects like Eden North, and Lancashire’s global ambitions as set out in its new Internationalisation Strategy, will be also be highlighted.
Marketing Lancashire’s recently launched Make our Lancashire yours initiative – which celebrates the very best of the county including its fantastic quality of life offer – will be another unifying element at the event.
The Convention of the North 2023 is being delivered by Greater Manchester alongside NP11 (the consortium of all 11 northern local enterprise partnerships).
Sir Roger Marsh OBE DL, Chair of NP11 and Co-Chair of Convention of the North, said: “With the levelling up agenda at a critical juncture, the Convention of the North provides an invaluable opportunity to assess the current situation and define priorities for the coming years. The work being done to ensure the region reaches its full potential requires a continued, open dialogue between Government and local leaders from across the North.
“Much has changed since the last Convention of the North, but our message remains the same. A levelled up North has the skills, enterprise and innovation to address some of the biggest challenges facing the country. The region can lead the green energy revolution while delivering sustainable economic growth and a competitive, global Britain.”
The Convention of the North It is sponsored by Growth Flag (in partnership with the Growth Company and Red Flag Alert), MAG (Manchester Airports Group), and The University of Manchester.