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CONTENTS Introduction A welcome to Europe’s 12th largest economy. Key Sectors An insight into the region’s key business sectors. – Advanced Engineering and Materials – Biomedical – Financial and Professional Services – Digital and Creative Industries – Energy and Environmental Technologies – Food and Drink


11 23 31 39 49 61

Business Locations Five sub-regions each contributing to a thriving £120 billion economy.


Knowledge Leading universities and high business R&D expenditure.


Connectivity Comprising an excellent transport infrastructure.


Workspace and People Impressive workspace design and a diverse and well-qualified workforce.


Living Attractive landscape and rich heritage plus the cosmopolitan cities of Manchester and Liverpool.


Useful Contacts Map of the region.




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A BUSINESS GUIDE TO ENGLAND’S NORTHWEST This guide has been produced by the Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA) to provide a broad overview of the region. It provides summary information and economic data on the region’s business sectors, key locations, academic and research infrastructure, connectivity and quality of life. The guide is designed to provide at-a-glance information within a handy pocket-sized format. It should be viewed as a precursor to our Investment Services team offering potential business investors more detailed regional intelligence relative to specific business location enquiries. If your company or organisation is looking for a dynamic place to do business, we can provide you with as much support and advice as you need about locating in England’s Northwest. You can find more information about business opportunities in the region by visiting our website at or by calling us on +44(0) 1925 400 495.

*All data correct at time of going to press, June 2009.

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INTRODUCTION “To me, the size of the Northwest’s economy is such that it is not just an important factor to UK prosperity, it is now a major influence on the wider European stage”. Sir Terry Leahy Chief Executive, Tesco plc

Driven by an economy bigger than 15 EU countries, England’s Northwest operates on a truly international scale. Comprising Manchester, Liverpool, Cheshire, Lancashire and Cumbria, its competitive business climate is home to some of the world’s biggest companies that view the region’s strengths as integral to their long-term business success. In pharmaceuticals, the region is home to an internationally recognised biologics community. In the digital and creative sector, it is Europe’s second largest media hub. In other markets too, the Northwest is a major force on the world stage – advanced engineering, nuclear energy and financial and professional services. But economic success is only one part of the story; the region’s quality of life offering is one of the best in the UK. With the vibrant and cosmopolitan cities of Manchester and Liverpool, first-class schools and universities, plus its varied and attractive landscapes, England’s Northwest is a compelling choice for business location.

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INTERNATIONAL CONNECTIVITY The Northwest is a global business hub with 3 international airports and a major seaport. St Petersburg Oslo Stockholm

ECONOMY Gross Value Added (GVA): £119.7 billion. Sub-regional GVA split: Greater Manchester 39.6%. Merseyside 16.3%. Cheshire 18.4%. Lancashire 19.4%. Cumbria 6.2%. GVA per capita: £17,433. Registered businesses: 252,443. DEMOGRAPHICS Population: 6.9 million, ranked third in UK. Growth forecast: 2.3% by 2011. Average Gross Annual Earnings: £19,866. Population at working age: 61.8%. Employment rate of working age people: 72.3%. KEY SECTORS Advanced Engineering and Materials (includes Aerospace, Automotive, Chemicals and Advanced Flexible Materials). Biomedical. Financial and Professional Services. Digital and Creative Industries. Energy and Environmental Technologies. Food and Drink. EDUCATION One of Europe’s largest university concentrations. Universities: 12. Higher education institutions: 4. Further education institutions: 60. Graduates per annum: 65,000. Number of students per annum: 235,000. 25.8% of the population have NVQ Level 4 or above.

CONNECTIVITY Air: 3 international airports; Manchester, Liverpool, Blackpool. Rail: Served by West Coast Main Line – designated a Trans-European Network (TENs) route. Road: Encompasses 25% of the UK’s motorway network. HOUSING Average house price: £116,009 (April 2009). LANDSCAPE/GEOGRAPHY Area: 14,165 sq km. Stretching from Cumbria in the north to Cheshire in the south. Almost 30% is designated as National Park or Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Coastline: 1,400 km. The Lake District is England’s largest National Park. In total, the region has: 1 National Park – Lake District. 3 Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty: – Solway Coast, Cumbria – Arnside and Silverdale, Lancashire – Forest of Bowland, Lancashire. 1 Heritage coast. 32 Nature reserves. 2 UNESCO World Heritage Sites: – Hadrian’s Wall, Cumbria – Liverpool’s historic waterfront.

England’s Northwest



Dublin Warsaw




Berlin Paris





Rome Athens

Lisbon 3-4 HOURS 4-5 HOURS


Tunis Rabat

PORTS Liverpool – One of Europe’s leading container ports, a North Atlantic gateway. – Handles 32 million tonnes of cargo annually, 700,000 containers. – Home to Liverpool Freeport, the UK’s largest Free Zone with over 3 million sq ft of logistics and warehousing facilities. – New Cruise Liner Terminal hosts the world’s biggest luxury liners. – Linked to Port of Manchester via the Ship Canal. 15,000 combined annual ship movements (both ports).


AIRPORTS Manchester Airport – A global gateway handling over 22 million passengers each year. – Ranked as one of Europe’s top 20 biggest airports. – Direct routes to 210 worldwide destinations, including 12 weekly flights to USA/Canada. – The airport’s World Freight Terminal handles 166,000 tonnes of annual cargo. Liverpool John Lennon Airport – Over 6 million passengers each year. – One of Europe’s fastest growing regional airports. – Flights to over 60 European and domestic destinations. – EasyJet and Ryanair have major operations at LJLA. Blackpool International Airport – Operates scheduled Ireland and Mediterranean routes.

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UK CONNECTIVITY The Northwest benefits from an excellent UK connectivity network with 70% more motorway than the national average. Manchester’s M60 orbital system and the M62 corridor provide fast connection to the country’s main arterial networks. CUMBRIA

Rail The West Coast Main Line is one of Europe's major inter-city routes. Over 100 trains operate daily between the Northwest and the capital, with 47 services from Manchester Piccadilly to London Euston. The route is also one of Europe's leading freight routes, used by more than 2,000 trains per day.





Rail times to/from London Manchester 2 hr 5 min Liverpool 2 hr 9 min Chester 2 hr 2 min Preston 2 hr 15 min Carlisle 3 hr 20 min




England’s Northwest






M58 London

Air All three Northwest airports operate internal routes to other UK cities. The Manchester to London shuttle service offers 164 weekly flights to the capital.

M62 M66





Sea Both Liverpool and Heysham operate daily freight/passenger roll-on/roll-off services to Ireland and the Isle of Man.

M57 Liverpool


Road The region’s road infrastructure is at the centre of the strategic North-South (M6) and East-West (M62/M56) motorway system. The Northwest offers smooth motorway access to all of the UK’s main economic centres.


M62 Warrington



Within the region M6




Distance (miles) Manchester Liverpool Chester Preston Carlisle

Manchester – 34 41 35 120

Liverpool 34 – 24 38 124

Chester 41 24 – 58 144

Preston 35 38 58 – 89

Carlisle 120 124 144 89 –



Dr. Franz-Josef Paefgen, Chairman and Chief Executive, Bentley Motors

With an economy of almost £120 billion – Europe’s 12th largest – England’s Northwest is home to 252,000 businesses, over 3,000 of which are foreign-owned. In attracting overseas investment it consistently outperforms all other UK regions outside of London and the South East. It has become a prime business location due to its expertise and strengths in a number of key sectors. A host of internationally successful businesses have recognised the region’s capabilities in markets as diverse as biomedical, financial and professional services, advanced engineering, digital and creative industries, food and drink and energy and environmental technologies. England’s Northwest is: – A world leader in nuclear energy, with the highest concentration of nuclear R&D facilities anywhere in the UK. – Europe’s largest biomanufacturing region and the number one exporter of pharmaceutical products. – Europe’s second largest media hub, with a digital and creative sector expanding at twice the national average. – The UK’s largest financial and professional services centre outside the capital. – The UK’s largest aerospace and defence region, generating more sales than any other. – The UK’s largest centre for chemicals production.


Bentley Motors has been based in Crewe, Cheshire for over 60 years. Over recent times, our growth has been dramatic and we have recruited hundreds of new employees both locally and internationally across a range of disciplines; engineering, design, production and marketing. As our customer base has become global, so too has our workforce. All are proud to see Crewe as “the home of Bentley”.


ADVANCED ENGINEERING AND MATERIALS The region’s advanced engineering and materials sector encompasses four major, high-revenue industries; aerospace, automotive, chemicals and advanced flexible materials. In automotive, the region manufactures three of the world’s prestige motoring brands. In aerospace, it is a world-class manufacturing centre. In chemicals, over 25% of the UK’s entire chemicals workforce is employed in the Northwest, whilst the region is one of Europe’s growth locations for advanced flexible materials. Each of these key sectors has enjoyed a long and successful history in the region and all of them have maintained their international competitiveness through continued investment in knowledge and technology.


The Northwest hosts one of Europe’s leading advanced engineering sectors.

sustainable auto-engineering technologies. Employing over 2,200, the General Motors’ Vauxhall plant at Ellesmere Port, Cheshire produces the best-selling Astra range. The plant’s high efficiency rating has been recognised by its appointment to build the new generation Astra from 2010. It is one of only four GM plants around the world awarded the project. In Lancashire, the PACCAR owned Leyland Trucks plant has become the group’s central facility for light/medium truck development and manufacture. Servicing the main auto-manufacturing centres is a major supply-chain that comprises over 200 companies. The 55-acre Getrag Ford facility – also within the Halewood corridor – is a division of the world’s largest independent manufacturer of auto/manual transmission systems. In total the automotive sector generates an annual turnover of £9 billion, with 450 companies employing 43,000 people. 60% of output relates to overseas exports – twice the UK average.

AUTOMOTIVE KEY DATA Annual turnover £9 billion GVA £1.8 billion Employees 43,000 Businesses 450 Exports 60% of output Models manufactured Bentley Continental and Arnage Series. Jaguar X-Type. Land Rover Freelander 2. Vauxhall Astra range.


Over the past decade, almost £500 million has been invested in lean manufacturing technology at Bentley’s Crewe facility.


Automotive The Northwest is the UK’s second largest automotive region and consists of a number of lean, precision-automated assembly plants producing some of the world’s most prestigious marques. Bentley is a brand synonymous with luxury and precision engineering. Major investment in technology-based manufacturing at its Cheshire plant over the past five years has helped the business to increase sales significantly year-on-year, exceeding all historical output levels. One of the most advanced automotive facilities in the world, the Tata Group’s Jaguar and Land Rover Halewood plant in Liverpool manufactures the Jaguar X-Type and the Land Rover Freelander 2 models. The newly launched Freelander 2 TD4_e is the company’s most fuel-efficient model to date, and the world’s first SUV to feature smart ‘start-stop’ engine technology. Halewood has become a major focus for Jaguar Land Rover’s considerable worldwide investment in


Aerospace A pivotal international supplier, the region’s aerospace sector comprises over 800 companies generating an annual turnover of £6.3 billion – 75% from exports. It is home to the UK’s largest concentration of manufacturing and production, with turnover equating to approximately one-third of the UK’s total sector output. Lancashire, particularly, is an area synonymous with aerospace technology. During its 90-year association with aircraft production, it has overseen development of major aerospace programmes such as the Nimrod Reconnaissance aircraft project, the Eurofighter Typhoon and the RB-211 jet engine. In total, more than 100 aircraft types have their roots in Lancashire and the wider Northwest. The region boasts a large number of major industry players including BAE Systems and Rolls Royce. Both these businesses operate major design and manufacturing facilities in Lancashire with BAE’s Warton and Salmesbury sites renowned as world-class lean manufacturing facilities. Other leading companies include Aircelle (part of the Safran Group), Unison Engine Components (a division of General Electric), APPH and Brookhouse.

Northwest aerospace activity encompasses all key design and manufacturing disciplines. Average employee GVA equates to £75.5k.

Northwest universities are working closely with industry on numerous initiatives. One such project is the Northwest Composites Centre. This partnership between four of the region’s universities undertakes research and evaluation into high-strength composite materials. New composites technologies allow aerospace manufacturers to benefit from high-strength/low-weight materials at a viable production cost.

Generating £6.3 billion turnover, the Northwest’s aerospace industry competes with world locations such as Seattle and Toulouse.


procedures and technologies required to allow UAVs to operate in national airspace. Similarly, Rolls Royce is leading a major programme to build environmentally friendly aircraft engines, to reduce the impact of aviation on the environment. Supported by all of the industry’s key players, a nationally acclaimed Supply Chain Excellence Programme is also in progress. This will propel the region’s supplier network towards world-class capability.


On several levels, the Northwest’s aerospace sector has entered a new era. BAE Systems is working on a joint partnership with US companies Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman to develop the F-35 Lightning II (Joint Strike Fighter) short take-off/vertical landing aircraft. The company is also working on an Unmanned Aerial Vehicles project (UAVs) to develop ‘intelligent’ non-piloted aircraft. This, in turn, is linked to the ASTRAEA programme – a national collaboration focusing on the systems,

AEROSPACE KEY DATA Annual turnover £6.3 billion GVA £3.56 billion Employees 48,500 Businesses 800 Exports 75% of output Key businesses BAE Systems, Rolls Royce, Unison Engine Components, Aircelle, APPH, Brookhouse.


advanced flexible materials. Leading companies include Unilever, Fujifilm, Innospec, PZ Cussons, Brunner Mond, Shell UK and INEOS Group. There is significant R&D investment throughout the sector, whilst the region also enjoys a strong patent application tradition, with 20% of all patents related to chemistry. Successful industry-academic partnerships in the region include Chemistry Innovation – the knowledge transfer network for the chemicals industry – and leading research centres such as the Organic Materials Innovation Centre (OMIC) in Manchester and the Materials Discovery Centre at the University of Liverpool.


Chemicals With a £9.4 billion annual turnover – 23% of the UK’s chemicals output – the Northwest’s chemicals industry is a major employer with 51,000 professionals working in over 800 companies. The sector is the largest in the UK with 60% of the world’s top 50 chemicals manufacturers based in the region – many of these concentrated in the important Warrington-Widnes-Runcorn triangle. It is also the Northwest’s largest exporter, with almost 60% of its output sold overseas. Sector productivity is high with GVA equating to £55,000 per employee. Overall, the chemicals sector entails a range of specialist manufacturing categories that includes agro-chemicals, detergents, petrochemicals, plastics, coatings and

With a workforce of over 50,000, the Northwest is the UK’s largest centre for chemicals manufacture and processing.

CHEMICALS KEY DATA Annual turnover £9.4 billion GVA £2.8 billion Employees 51,000 Businesses 800 Exports 59% of output Key businesses Unilever, Fujifilm, Shell UK, PZ Cussons, INEOS.

are used to enhance the latest generation of composite materials used in aviation technology. Close collaboration is also ongoing with the automotive sector where AFM manufacturers are supplying engineering components woven from high strength, ultra light carbon fibre in place of traditional steel or aluminium parts. Supporting the region’s AFM offering is a strong academic infrastructure. In addition to Materials Science departments within leading universities, Northwest institutes are leading the research behind textile and materials technology. Facilities such as the Organic Materials Innovation Centre (OMIC) and the Northwest Composites Centre carry out a range of studies into electronic textiles, 3D weaving and coloration techniques. The University of Bolton’s Centre for Materials Research and Innovation is conducting important work into flame retardant fabrics and medical textiles, while Manchester Metropolitan University’s Department of Clothing Design and Technology is furthering research into high peformance sportswear fabrics and materials.

A collaboration of four of the region’s leading universities, the Northwest Composites Centre is heading the global research into composites technology and advanced flexible materials.


Advanced Flexible Materials With 65% of the UK market, the Northwest has the largest cluster of Advanced Flexible Materials (AFM) manufacturers in Europe. This important and highly specialised branch of materials science is widely regarded as ‘platform technology’ –creating products and processes that support present or future development, which in turn generates further areas of knowledge and technology. Over 350 Northwest companies employ 25,000 staff across a sub-sector that generates £2.5 billion in sales, with 65% of output exported overseas. The AFM market serves much larger technology-manufacturing sectors including aerospace and defence, automotive, biomedical, environmental technologies and chemicals processing. Its core technology is being applied to many pioneering developments such as surgical procedures where woven materials are being used in joint replacement operations, superseding traditional titanium implants. AFM technology is also in demand from the aerospace sector where advanced fabrics


AFM KEY DATA Annual turnover £2.5 billion GVA £780 million Employees 25,000 Businesses 350 Exports 65% of output Major businesses Sigmatex, Smartlife Technology, Lantor, RFD Beaufort, Caldeira, John Holden.


BIOMEDICAL Europe’s biggest biomanufacturing region, the Northwest is also one of a handful of globally recognised bioscience communities. With almost £5 billion in annual sales, the Northwest is also the UK’s largest exporter of pharmaceuticals. The sector is concentrated within an integrated biomedical cluster that comprises Liverpool, Manchester and Cheshire. Over 200 companies operate in the sector, employing 20,000 highly skilled workers in a broad range of life science disciplines including drug development, manufacturing, research diagnostics, medical devices and healthcare products.

BIOMEDICAL KEY DATA Annual turnover £4.9 billion GVA £2 billion Employees 20,000 Businesses 200 Exports 50% of output Major employers AstraZeneca, Novartis, Lilly, Sanofi Aventis, MedImmune, Bristol-Myers Squibb.


Home to 6 biomedical multinational companies, the Northwest is also Europe’s biggest biomanufacturing region.


AstraZeneca’s Alderley Park is the company’s primary global R&D facility.


Some of the industry’s biggest healthcare companies manufacture and export their products from the region. From its manufacturing complex in Speke, Liverpool, Novartis has become the UK’s leading producer of flu vaccines for the global market, whilst close-by, Medimmune produces the only attenuated live flu vaccine for worldwide distribution. Also in Speke, US pharmaceuticals giant Lilly manufactures a range of biologics – including human growth hormone – from the largest biologics facility in the UK. AstraZeneca’s complex at Alderley Park, Cheshire is its largest global research and development facility. Employing 4,500 staff, the 400-acre site is home to some of the world’s most distinguished biomedical teams. AstraZeneca also operates a major manufacturing site in Macclesfield,

comprising primary and secondary production. Bristol-Myers Squibb’s Pharmaceutical Research Institute in Wirral is the company’s key clinical R&D facility for its UK and European activities. Alongside business research activity, the region’s main universities continue to commercialise their research expertise through a range of collaborative knowledge-transfer/start-up initiatives. The University of Manchester Incubator Company (UMIC) enjoys an excellent track record of nurturing new biomedical SMEs and spin-outs. UMIC offers accommodation for fledgling life science companies in Europe’s first campus-based bioincubator. Grow-on space for maturing companies is also available at the adjacent Core Technology Facility. Renovo, the UK’s largest biotechnology company, is based here.


The Northwest’s academic base offers excellent grow-on facilities for life science SMEs and spin-outs.

John Sullivan, Site Head, Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics, Liverpool

The region has major strengths in its academic, clinical and research bases. Between them both, the universities of Liverpool and Manchester have numerous high-quality life science divisions, whilst Manchester’s School of Biological Sciences is Europe’s largest of its kind. The Northwest is also the only region outside Oxbridge and the South East that operates both generic and specialist Department of Health Bioscience Research Centres. The region is also home to a large and growing number of specialist research institutes and organisations. Amongst

these are the Manchester Cancer Research Centre (MCRN), which together with the Christies NHS Hospital Trust, forms the largest combined cancer research and treatment facility in Europe; the Northwest Institute for Biohealth Informatics (NIBHI); the Nowgen Centre for Genetics in Healthcare, which seeks to advance the understanding of genetic medicine and is closely linked to the adjacent European Clinical Genetics Reference Laboratory; and UK Biobank, a unique project to develop the largest information resource of its kind anywhere in the world for medical researchers.


“Our Liverpool facility is one of the world's largest producers of flu vaccines and our ongoing investment is testimony to the expertise we have assembled here. Undoubtedly, the region’s quality of life helps us retain these skills, but just as important, we find that the Northwest’s international reputation as a centre for biomanufacturing excellence helps us recruit additional talent from other parts of the UK and beyond.”



The NBC enhances the UK’s capacity to commercialise and market bioscience innovation.

LSTM’s new Centre for Tropical and Infectious Diseases will ensure the institution remains an international leader in education and research.

Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine The world’s first medical institution dedicated to the teaching and study of tropical diseases, the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM) remains at the forefront of globally significant research programmes. A £23 million state-of-the-art research annexe – the Centre for Tropical and Infectious Diseases – has recently been added to the site, whilst over

$50 million of grant funding has been secured from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. This will enable the school to lead a five-year multi-million dollar research programme into the control and treatment of malaria in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Currently, LSTM has over £100 million of total research contracts on its books.

early stage clinical trials. This will help create opportunities for further investment, and will also place product development within a robust regulatory framework. The NBC acts as a beacon for the UK’s wider biopharmaceutical design and processing expertise, enhancing the country’s overall bio-sector competitiveness within the expanding global marketplace.


National Biomanufacturing Centre Located in Liverpool’s Speke bio-hub, the National Biomanufacturing Centre (NBC) is a £34 million product development and clinical manufacturing facility. Established as an international biopharmaceutical design centre, its aim is to provide the resources and knowledge for life science companies and academic groups to bridge the gap between laboratory science and


The Northwest’s strength as a major financial location is endorsed by the fact that 65 of the FTSE top-100 companies have operations in the region.

SECTOR KEY DATA GVA £11.7 billion Employees 320,000 Major employers RBS, Co-operative Financial Services, HBOS, MBNA-Bank of America, RSA, Barclays, DWF, Halliwells.


FINANCIAL AND PROFESSIONAL SERVICES Employing over 320,000 people, the Northwest is the UK’s largest financial and professional services sector outside London. The sector encompasses retail and corporate banking, stockbroking, investment, private equity, wealth management, insurance, law and accountancy. Overall sector GVA is £11.7 billion – representing over 10% of the region’s total economic output. The financial, accountancy and legal graduate supply-chain is well served by Northwest universities. In Manchester Business School (MBS) and Lancaster University Management School (LUMS), the region has two of Europe’s leading academic business and management institutions. LUMS is a world-ranked business school; in the Government’s latest Research Assessment Exercise, 75% of its research was judged as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’. MBS is the UK’s largest campus-based business and management school and was ranked in the world’s top 25 institutions in a recent Financial Times survey. Each year, 22,000 students study accountancy, finance and business management in Northwest universities.


Since 2005, the Bank of New York Mellon has seen its business grow in Manchester to the extent that it now has two major operational hubs in the city.


“The Northwest has proven itself as an ideal location to support the Bank of New York in our European growth strategy. In addition to the quality of the established financial and business infrastructure, the ready availability of talented individuals has allowed us to quickly build an 800-strong highly motivated and committed team.” Jackie Williams, Managing Director, Bank of New York Mellon.

Financial Services Some of the leading names in global banking and finance have established significant operations in the region; these include more than 80 banks – over 50% of which are overseas owned. Recent investors include Bank of New York Mellon, State Bank of India, Deutsche Bank, Handelsbanken and Bank of America. These join a significant number of blue-chip corporate and financial service providers already conducting business from the region across international

markets; brands such as Barclays, Royal Bank of Scotland and Co-operative Financial Services. Manchester’s financial sector has created a strong demand for highspecification commercial workspace as more international investors see the city as a regional European finance capital. Employing over 5,500 staff, Royal Bank of Scotland has a major banking operation in the city – including a base at Spinningfields, the city’s newly emerging

“Manchester’s size and reputation as a UK financial growth engine dictated our decision to establish the Handelsbanken regional operations centre in the city.” Anders Bouvin, Regional CEO, Handelsbanken


Liverpool’s broad financial and professional services talent pool was an important factor in JPMorgan INVEST’s decision to set up a major pensions operation in the city.

A long-established financial services niche, Chester is home to major businesses such as HBOS, M&S Money and the European HQ of MBNA. A division of Bank of America, MBNA’s huge credit card operation is supported by more than 5,000 staff at its Chester Business Park location. The Northwest also has traditional strengths in the insurance and pensions sub-sector and is home to leading businesses such as RSA, Friends Provident, Direct Line and Royal Liver – one of the world’s oldest mutual assurance companies. The region enjoys an 11% share of the UK insurance market, employing close to 40,000 people.


and stunning financial district. In Liverpool, JPMorgan INVEST operates an asset management and corporate pensions division, further strengthening the city’s financial services sector. Over the past few years, Liverpool has also become a significant location for wealth management activity. Both Barclays and institutional investment bankers Panmure Gordon have opened offices in the city, joining other major private equity and fund management specialists such as Coutts, Rathbones, Rensburg, Deutsche Bank and Midas Capital. In Bibby Financial Services and Intrum Justitia, Liverpool also hosts two of the biggest factoring/ credit management businesses in the UK.


With major bases in both Liverpool and Manchester, Halliwells is now the UK’s fastest growing commercial law practice.


“We believe Hill Dickinson’s key asset is its human capital. It is the talent, experience and diversity of the people we’ve drawn from right across the Northwest and beyond, that has helped us create one of the UK’s largest multi-disciplined law practices.” Peter Jackson, Managing Partner, Hill Dickinson

Professional services Covering accountancy, legal and management consultancy, the Northwest is the UK’s largest centre for professional services outside London. Of these, an estimated 50% are based in Manchester. From historically servicing mainly UK-based businesses, the Northwest has broadened its offering to become a significant provider of professional services to major international organisations. This is reflected in the number of multidisciplined accountancy and legal firms with major operations in the region – Pricewaterhouse Coopers, Baker Tilly, DWF, KPMG, Hill Dickinson, Deloitte, Halliwells, Grant Thornton and Cobbetts. Between them, Halliwells and Hill Dickinson employ over 1,600 staff in their Manchester and Liverpool offices. Many Northwest professional services firms excel in niche categories. These include AIM listings, venture capital investment, public-private partnerships,

fund/wealth management and sports, maritime and environmental law. The region’s main universities operate respected law faculties. These have built close working partnerships with Northwest legal firms to cultivate a high-quality graduate supply-chain. The College of Law is the UK’s premier legal education and training provider for both prospective and qualified lawyers. Its Chester college helps develop young talent to the high standards required by the region’s law firms. Such is the huge growth of legal services in the Northwest – a 25% increase over the past five years – a new 22,000 sq ft state-of-the-art College of Law has opened in Manchester’s Piccadilly quarter. Major firms such as DLA Piper, Halliwells and Pannone operate a wide range of intern and placement schemes to help nurture the working skills and hands-on knowledge of the region’s law graduates.


ITV’s satirical comedy series ‘Headcases’ was created by Manchester’s BAFTA awardwinning Red Vision.

SECTOR KEY DATA GVA £15.8 billion Employees 320,000 Businesses 31,000 Major employers BBC, ITV Granada, Lime Pictures, Sony Computer Entertainment Europe, Trinity Mirror plc, Guardian Media Group.


DIGITAL AND CREATIVE INDUSTRIES As Europe’s second largest media hub, the Northwest is internationally recognised for the innovation, quality and diversity of its creative offering. Since the mid-1990s, the sector has expanded at twice the rate of the wider UK economy – now generating just under £16 billion GVA; 16% of the region’s total output. The sector benefits from a huge talent resource. Over 31,000 companies and 320,000 individuals are employed within the industry. Some of the world’s most respected media brands have major broadcasting bases in the region – complemented by a new generation of highly successful independent film and TV production companies. Right across the creative economy, the Northwest is a hotbed of ingenuity and talent – from computer gaming and ICT/software development, to advertising and marketing services. Richard Florida, one of the world’s leading thinkers on economic competitiveness and cultural innovation, recently identified Manchester as the UK’s most creative city and ranked it in the world’s top-ten creative locations.


popular television drama outside London. Northwest creative talent is equally strong in its producers, writers and directors. Jimmy McGovern, Oscarwinning Danny Boyle, Linda La Plante, Willy Russell, Alan Bleasdale, Caroline Aherne and Steve Coogan have all created some of the most celebrated British comedy, drama and entertainment over recent years. Complementing the Northwest’s creative offering is a wealth of in-demand TV and movie locations. Liverpool, Manchester, Cumbria, Lancashire and Cheshire all have film offices to co-ordinate both UK and overseas movie, commercials and video production. The Liverpool Film Office was the first of its kind in the UK

and the city is still the most popular film location outside London. The region is also renowned for its animation/CGI talent. Cosgrove Hall is one of Europe’s most successful animation companies. Through classic children’s cartoons and animations such as Danger Mouse and Postman Pat, it has exported its work to over 150 countries around the world – picking up a clutch of BAFTAs and Emmys in the process. Other major Northwest animation companies and post-production houses include HOT Animation, Red Vision and McKinnon and Saunders. The latter’s specialist CGI and puppet work is regularly featured in Hollywood and UK productions. The Northwest is a leading location for TV broadcasting, film making and highquality post-production.


Film and Television The Northwest is a major centre for TV and movie production. Manchester in particular, has enjoyed a long association with television broadcasting since the advent of the medium in the early 1950s. Both BBC and ITV Granada have major regional broadcasting operations throughout the city. The region has delivered some of the most exciting and innovative drama productions on British television. Its creativity and ideas are exported across the entertainment world through the work of companies such as Lime Pictures, Red Productions, Baby Cow and All Out. Employing over 500 staff at its Liverpool headquarters, Lime is now the UK’s biggest independent producer of


Over the past 20 years, Liverpool has played a major role in the growth of the UK’s computer games industry.


Digital industries The region’s digital industries, including computer games and ICT/software development, generate £6 billion GVA each year with 6,000 companies employing upwards of 70,000 staff. With one of the UK’s largest games industries, the Northwest is at the cuttingedge of design and development, with Liverpool in particular an internationally recognised location. It is home to the European headquarters of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe – one of the world’s biggest games manufacturers. Its Liverpool studio has developed some of

the most popular titles within the brand’s PlayStation games portfolio. Other major players investing in Northwest creative talent include Los Angeles-based THQ who acquired Juice Games in Warrington, and Santa Monicabased Activision who purchased Liverpool’s Bizarre Creations. Sony has also acquired Runcorn-based Evolution Studios, developers of the best-selling PS3 Motor Storm and Pursuit Force titles. Over recent years, ICT and software development have become one of the region’s highest growth export areas.

Lancashire is home to the UK headquarters of Promethean, one of the world’s leading developers of educational software and interactive teaching technologies. Employing 400 ICT specialists, USbased Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC) has established a major operations centre in Liverpool. CSC is upgrading the NHS patient records system for the Northwest and West Midlands regions. Worth £1.2 billion, the 10-year contract is part of the world’s largest civil IT project. In digital communications and e-commerce, the region is home to some

of the UK’s most innovative businesses. Both Manchester and Liverpool Science Parks host clusters of new media agencies, each strengthened by high quality graduate streams. Web agencies such as Rippleffect, Mando and Code ComputerLove are working with some of the UK’s biggest companies as the momentum behind e-commerce and online activity continues. Over 300 media and ICT courses are available within the region’s main universities, demonstrating the depth of resource and talent continually feeding into this thriving sector.


newspaper, while Trinity Mirror is Europe’s largest regional newspaper group. Additionally, German print group Prinovis has set up Europe’s most advanced high-volume gravure press at Liverpool’s International Business Park. Employing over 400 print technicians, the purpose-built 65,000 sq metre complex is designed to facilitate fast-track expansion.


Publishing Employing 8,000 people across the region, the Northwest’s publishing sub-sector includes leading names such as Guardian Media Group and Trinity Mirror who between them publish regional news titles such as Manchester Evening News, Liverpool Daily Post and the Liverpool Echo. The MEN has the UK’s largest circulation of any regional

Since the mid-1990s, the Northwest’s digital and creative sector has expanded at twice the rate of the UK economy.

Marketing and creative services Generating over £1.25 billion GVA, the Northwest is the UK’s largest advertising, design and marketing centre outside London. Several multinational advertising and communications groups have major offices in the region – McCann Erickson in Cheshire and TBWA and Cheetham Bell/JWT in Manchester. These agencies handle high-spend advertising and communications accounts for some of the UK’s leading consumer and trade brands, with McCann Erickson recognised as a leading healthcare and

pharmaceutical marketing specialist. In addition, several international media buying agencies are based in the region – mediaedge:cia, PHD North and MediaVest, the largest media buyer outside of London. Although smaller in scale than the London advertising sector (one of the world’s biggest), the Northwest advertising and communications industry features regularly in the UK’s top awards for creative excellence and sales effectiveness.


KEY FACILITIES MediaCityUK will help global media brands such as the BBC further extend their international activities.

Caroline Thomson, Chief Operating Officer, BBC


MediaCityUK Located in Salford Quays, Manchester, MediaCityUK is the country’s first purpose-built, large-scale ‘convergent media’ complex. The BBC has identified the site as a major cornerstone of its development strategy for the next two decades by relocating five London-based departments to the site by 2012. These include BBC Sport, Radio 5 Live, Future Media and Technology and Childrens’ Learning. Once complete, MediaCityUK will be the biggest of its type in Europe and will rival a handful of globally significant projects also currently under construction in locations such as Dubai, Seoul and Singapore. The iconic 200-acre ‘mini-city’ will house over 1,000 mediarelated businesses in a striking cluster of steel and glass buildings and state-of-theart media facilities. Designed around an advanced digital content and technology platform, the project will boast the UK’s largest HD-broadcast capability. An education partner with the BBC, the University of Salford is creating an innovation, learning and research faculty on site. Designed with postgraduate research and business-led collaboration in mind, the facility will contain broadcast and digital media zones, a virtual laboratory and performance-creative space for teaching and project-based research and learning. Once complete, the MediaCityUK project will create employment for 15,000 skilled creative and production staff.

“In Salford, the BBC has committed to establishing the UK’s largest production centre outside London. This state-of-the-art highdefinition broadcasting centre will be at the heart of MediaCityUK. The aim is to be a catalyst for change and regeneration that will bring new opportunities to talented individuals all over the region.”


The Northwest’s nuclear sector is playing a key role in the UK Government’s £70 billion decommissioning programme.


ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENTAL TECHNOLOGIES Employing more than 50,000 people and with a turnover of £6.5 billion, the Northwest’s energy and environmental technologies sector makes a vital contribution to the region’s economy. With approximately 3,000 companies within the supply-chain, the Northwest has world-class skills in a range of key energy technologies. In particular, West Cumbria has become an international centre for nuclear technology with 50% of the UK’s workforce concentrated there. In Sellafield, it has the UK’s most advanced nuclear facility, employing 10,000 highly skilled workers across key production disciplines. In other areas too, the Northwest is a major contributor to the national energy supply. In offshore oil and gas production, 18 fields supply 12% of the UK’s natural gas requirements; and in environmental technologies, over 100 renewable energy companies are developing the next generation of sustainable energy systems and services to capitalise on the Northwest’s sizeable wind and tidal resource.


fuel reprocessing, waste management (MOX fuel fabrication and decommissioning) at Sellafield. The sector is dominated by operations in West Cumbria, singularly the UK’s most important nuclear location and home to Sellafield. Together with facilities at Calder Hall, Windscale and the national Low Level Waste Repository near Drigg, Sellafield employs over 10,000 staff. The recent formation of the National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL) within the Sellafield complex – from the amalgamation of Nexia Solutions and the British Technology Centre – will provide the nuclear industry with training, research and a national support structure, with a strong emphasis on the decommissioning process. The NNL is the UK’s only

dedicated R&D facility for analysis and testing of highly active nuclear material. Additionally, all of the UK’s non-radioactive test-rig work is now incorporated within its remit. The Northwest is also a key location for the sector’s regulatory infrastructure. The HSE Nuclear Directorate is based in Liverpool, while the Environment Agency’s Nuclear Regulation Group is situated in Cumbria. The region and its businesses are also playing a critical role in the Government’s long-term plan for the nation’s nuclear energy supply – both in the £70 billion decommissioning programme and the new-build strategy. Exemplifying its specialist status, West Cumbria is also home to the headquarters


Nuclear A world pioneer of nuclear energy, the Northwest is home to one of the world’s largest concentrations of nuclear facilities and expertise. Over 25,000 skilled professionals – half of the UK’s total nuclear workforce – are employed in 300 companies across the region. Combined turnover of the sector’s key Site Licence Companies is approximately £3 billion each year. The Northwest has an internationally renowned skills-base and is unique in that nearly all primary aspects of the nuclear fuel cycle are represented – fuel enrichment at Urenco UK, Capenhurst; fabrication and uranium conversion at Springfield Fuels, Lancashire; electricity generation at the British Energy, Heysham plants; and

SECTOR KEY DATA Annual turnover £3 billion Employees 25,000 Businesses 300 Main sites Sellafield, Heysham, Windscale, Drigg, Capenhurst, Calder Hall, National Low Level Waste Repository. Key Institutions Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, National Nuclear Laboratory, Nuclear Regulation Group, HSE Nuclear Directorate, National Skills Academy, Energus, British Technology Centre. Leading companies British Energy, Nuclear Management Partners, AMEC, Aker Kvaerner, Nuvia, Fluor, Doosan Babcock, AREVA, URS Washington, Westinghouse, Urenco UK.

50% of the UK’s civil nuclear workforce is based in the region.


Besides its partnership with other worldleading research foundations, the Dalton Nuclear Institute is involved in numerous inter-university research assignments.


“When the Government created the NDA in 2004, West Cumbria was the natural choice for its HQ and centre of operations. Our presence here not only places us at the very heart of the UK’s nuclear energy industry, we’re also situated in one of the world’s leading locations for nuclear technology, science and innovation.” Richard Waite, CEO, Nuclear Decommissioning Authority

of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA), responsible for overseeing safe decommissioning at UK sites. Almost 60% of the NDA’s annual £2.8 billion budget is expended in the Northwest – primarily at Sellafield, which accounts for £1.4 billion of expenditure. NDA’s opening up of the market to competition is presenting many opportunities for the region’s major industry specialists. These include businesses such as AMEC (one of the UK’s largest nuclear engineering companies), Aker Solutions, Nuvia, Fluor, Doosan Babcock and the Washington division of URS Corporation. The NDA has also appointed Nuclear Management Partners (NMP) as the new Parent Body Organisation to manage

all operations at Sellafield previously owned and administered by BNFL. NMP is a consortium comprising AMEC, AREVA and URS Washington. Helping businesses meet the challenges of decommissioning and newbuild is the new National Skills Academy for Nuclear. Sited in Cumbria, this key project will deliver a national framework for education, training and skills across the sector. Its flagship delivery arm, the new £19 million Energus facility, is located at nearby Lillyhall. Northwest institutions enjoy a wealth of expertise in academic research and nuclear science. Amongst these, the Dalton Nuclear Institute is the main focal point for Manchester’s highly

regarded nuclear academic base. Collaborating with international bodies and research partners, it aims to become a world-leading centre of nuclear research and education. The institute is also in the process of establishing its Centre for Nuclear Energy Technology (C-NET) in West Cumbria. This joint initiative with the University of Manchester and the NDA will help professionals develop a range of skills for the global nuclear industry, whilst providing specialist facilities for advancing research into radiation sciences and engineering decommissioning. The universities of Liverpool, Central Lancashire and Lancaster are other key HE institutions with acknowledged nuclear expertise.


KEY FACILITIES The British Technology Centre and the National Nuclear Laboratory The British Technology Centre (BTC) is the UK’s flagship nuclear research and development facility and focal point of the newly formed National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL). This £250 million investment at Sellafield signals the Government’s commitment to protect the UK’s nuclear capability, but is also a clear recognition of the knowledge, infrastructure and expertise prevalent throughout the Northwest. As the key operational hub of NNL, BTC is involved in a broad range of R&D activity – in addition to training and facilities support. Its research programmes encompass key deliverables such as reactor design and build, system stability, fuel processing, generation, fabrication and decommissioning. Within its national remit, NNL is also developing the UK’s nuclear science and facilities-base through the creation of strategic technology and environmental programmes. Its activities will raise the sector’s expertise levels, thus enhancing national nuclear performance to ensure the UK’s lead position within the international energy arena. As well as its main Central Laboratory at Sellafield, NNL’s other research facilities include those at Preston (based on the Springfields site), Windscale and Workington.

Based at Sellafield, the NNL offers commercial partners world-leading scientific research and nuclear knowledge.


Providing first-class product development facilities to start-ups, the Energy Innovation Centre also offers wideranging support from industry and the academic sector.

Recent research by the Northwest Tidal Energy Group suggests that energy from the Irish Sea could support almost 50% of the region’s total electricity needs, or 6% of national demand. Key tidal projects are currently underway on the Mersey Estuary, Solway Firth and at Morecambe’s ‘Bridge across the Bay’. With the support of four of the UK’s electricity distribution companies, the Energy Innovation Centre at Capenhurst helps start-up businesses to develop new ideas into commercially viable projects – particularly those relating to power transmission and distribution, energy efficiency and renewables. Several of the UK’s key environmental research institutes operate from the region. The Joule Centre, based at the University of Manchester, is a national centre of excellence for research and development into low-carbon wave, tidal and micro-hydro technologies. Housing the largest concentration of environmental scientists in Europe, Lancaster University’s Environment Centre is the UK’s main integrated research, teaching and knowledge facility for environmental science. The complex

SECTOR KEY DATA Annual turnover £3.5 billion Employees 53,000 Businesses 1,500 Main companies Vestas, Peel Energy, AMEC, Westinghouse, Scottish Power, United Utilities, Scottish and Southern Energy, Electricity Northwest. URS Washington, Urenco UK.


Environmental Technologies Environmental technologies and services is one of the Northwest’s fastest growing sectors. Up to 1,500 companies operate from the region, developing products, expertise and knowledge for the global market. 53,000 employees work across a range of disciplines including waste management, energy efficiency, recycling, land remediation and renewable energy. With its technology and services exported around the globe, Warrington-based United Utilities is the UK’s largest operator of water and wastewater networks. In the renewables sub-sector, the region has a fast-growing innovation base, developing assets and services for wind, biomass, wave and tidal power initiatives. The Northwest’s wind potential is estimated to be worth over £3 billion each year – additional onshore/offshore wind projects planned for 2010 will supply the region with enough electricity to power a city the size of Manchester. The Northwest’s enviable geographical location offers huge tidal power potential. By capitalising on its tidal assets, the region will make a substantial contribution towards the UK’s renewable energy targets.


With its considerable wind resource, the region has become a leading centre for onshore/offshore renewable energy development.

also houses the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, an important focus for scientific research into both terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems. Based at the University of Manchester, TyndallManchester is a part of the UK-wide Tyndall Centre – an influential, multidisciplinary research network that brings together leading academics, economists, engineers, ecologists and social scientists to develop long-term and sustainable policies to meet the carbon emission and climate change challenge.

In marine research, the Proudman Oceanographic Laboratory in Liverpool carries out world-leading research and monitoring of storm surges responsible for flooding, global sea level rises, oil spill movements and dispersal of pollutants. The facility is responsible for the raising and lowering of London’s Thames Barrier and also hosts the British Oceanographic Data Centre, one of the world’s most important and comprehensive libraries of ocean data.

“An inflow of talented engineering, science and technology graduates is vital to an organisation like ours. The strength of this region’s internationally acknowledged university infrastructure is a major asset to us and a key advantage for expanding our range of commercial activities in the future.” Robert Davis Managing Director, EA Technology


FOOD AND DRINK With an overall sector turnover of £9.5 billion, the Northwest is the country’s largest food and drink-producing region. It generates approximately 14% of the Northwest’s total income, employing 103,000 people across 2,000 companies – the UK’s highest concentration of food and drink manufacturing businesses. The Northwest is home to some of the biggest international food brands including Kellogg’s, United Biscuits, McVities, Nestlé, Fox’s, Princes Foods, Warburtons and Patak Foods. Heinz’s 55-acre site in Wigan is the largest food processing plant in Europe. In the drinks and spirits market, major businesses such as InBev, Halewood International, G&J Greenall and Nichols/Vimto also run large-scale operations from the region. The region boasts broad expertise in a number of food manufacturing areas including dairy produce, foodstuffs, red meat, milling, cereals processing and speciality/regional food production. Population expenditure on food and drink in the region is almost £20 billion each year.

SECTOR KEY DATA Annual turnover £9.5 billion Employees 103,000 Major employers Kelloggs, Heinz, Halewood International, Warburtons, United Biscuits, Nestlé.


The Heinz ‘super-plant’ in Wigan has its own distribution facility to accommodate the 1.34 billion cans produced annually.


In addition to its food production capabilities, the Northwest is leading the way in several key categories of food science and technology including hygiene, food traceability and lean manufacturing. In advanced food packaging, companies such as Alcan in Cumbria and Quinn Glass in Cheshire are international leaders. Other major exporters include Kappa, SCA and Mondi – producers of innovative corrugated packaging materials. From its research facility in Cumbria, Innovia Films is currently developing a range of technologies and materials to increase the quality levels of environmentally-friendly food labelling and wrapping within the wider food packaging industry. Cumbria is also the location for the Food Technology Centre (FTC). Based at Redhills, this unique business incubation centre provides the latest food and drink manufacturing facilities for SMEs across the sub-region. The FTC houses five professionally equipped commercial kitchen units, together with shared ambient, chiller and freezer storage areas. In addition, the centre also offers an automated packing and labelling line for the benefit of regional producers, as well as a fully operational logistics hub for fast nationwide distribution.

Continuous investment in manufacturing systems and technology has helped Manchester-based Victoria Foods to maintain its position as one of the leading ‘own label’ suppliers to the UK’s supermarket sector.



‘‘If a business is to compete internationally, then I truly believe it needs to base itself in a region that has the energy and confidence to test its skills and knowledge against the very best. History clearly demonstrates the Pilkington business couldn’t be better located.” Stuart Chambers, Group Chief Operating Officer, Pilkington NSG


England’s Northwest consists of five diverse sub-regions. Manchester has the largest economy and population with its growth over the past decade fuelled by an influx of major businesses, elevating its economy and corporate structure to an international level. The continuing renaissance of Liverpool is reshaping its iconic skyline. Major projects are attracting new investors to its established business base. A long-established knowledge and finance centre, Cheshire’s other key sectors – automotive engineering and chemicals – continue to generate billions in exports. An area rich in manufacturing tradition, Lancashire is a global defence and aerospace location, whilst Cumbria enjoys a diversified economy with its world-renowned nuclear sector, shipbuilding and tourism making a major contribution to its economic output.


“In the top 20 European cities to locate a business ...” Cushman & Wakefield, European Cities Monitor, 2008

Northwest’s top 500 companies are also based there. Manchester is particularly strong in a number of leading industry sectors whose rapid expansion has been instrumental in its continued growth. It is the UK’s largest financial and professional services centre outside London. Accounting for 7% of the country’s total output in this sector, it is home to some of the biggest financial institutions in the market with Barclays, Bank of New York Mellon and the Royal Bank of Scotland, all overseeing major operations in the city.

Over 2,000 foreign-owned businesses have made a major contribution to Manchester’s economic growth.


MANCHESTER International in its outlook and ambition, Manchester is the UK’s fastest growing city-region. Modern and cosmopolitan, it is redefining itself through its urban style and commercial growth. With a £45 billion GVA it is the driving force behind the Northwest’s wider economic success. The 2008 Cushman & Wakefield European Cities Monitor ranked Manchester as one of the best cities in Europe to locate a business, eclipsing many established European capitals. It is no surprise that 65 of the UK’s top 100 companies have a presence in the city and 40% of the

status in the heart of Manchester’s business district. The project’s scale is hugely impressive with a total offering of 4.5 million sq ft – 2.5 million sq ft of which is office space, all Grade A. The scheme’s design and sustainability have been recognised with a series of UK and international accolades including a Civic Trust award, plus several RIBA awards for the new Civil Justice Centre. This impressive construction was also shortlisted for the prestigious Sterling Prize. The city also enjoys excellent connectivity. Accommodating three international-domestic terminals, Manchester Airport is the major gateway from the North of England. It serves more worldwide destinations than any other UK A modern and vibrant city, Manchester is rich in culture and enjoys an excellent quality of life.


MANCHESTER KEY DATA GVA £44.78 billion GVA per head £17,535 Population 2.56 million Population % under 16 yrs 19.6 Average weekly pay £373.7 Average house price (April 2009) £108,520 % of pupils at the end 64.9 of Key Stage 4 gaining 5+ A* – C GCSEs and equivalent (2007/8) NVQ4 or above 24.5

academic and clinical research strength. It boasts expertise in specialist areas such as tissue regeneration, bioinformatics and clinical trial processes. Leading businesses such as Avecia, Renovo and Intercytex are based here as well as the UK Biobank, the largest genetic database of its type in the world. In addition, the University of Manchester’s Core Technology Facility supports the commercial exploitation of university research activity. Accommodating the city’s expanding corporate infrastructure are some of the UK’s most imaginative and striking commercial property schemes. Spinningfields is one of the most significant developments in Europe, offering a collection of high-quality officeled/mixed-use buildings of international


Manchester’s reputation as an international media hub has been further enhanced by the construction of MediaCityUK in Salford Quays. This major scheme is one of just a handful of similar large-scale ‘convergent media’ projects around the world. When fully operational, over 1,000 companies – including five major BBC broadcasting departments – and 15,000 industry employees will be based in this state-of-the-art media location. Such is the scale of MediaCityUK, it is expected that other global media brands will join the BBC as high-profile tenants, managing their pan-European operations from the 200-acre complex. Manchester is also home to a rapidly expanding biomedical community comprising internationally renowned


The UK’s largest regional airport, Manchester connects to 210 worldwide destinations.

airport including daily flights to New York and Chicago. Manchester also benefits from a modern, integrated transport infrastructure. The M60 orbits the city offering smooth access to both the regional and national motorway networks. With four universities, the city offers a first-class higher education infrastructure as well as Europe’s largest undergraduate population. The University of Manchester is the UK’s biggest single-site campus, with almost 35,000 students and an annual turnover approaching £640 million. Recognised as a leading biomedical, science and engineering institution, it enjoys an international reputation for the level and scope of its teaching and research. The university is also a major stakeholder in many of the region’s acknowledged academic research institutes. Befitting an international centre of commerce, the city also enjoys a highquality conference offering with a range of top-class venues including Manchester Central, the Bridgewater Hall and University Place. Manchester is also an outstanding cultural, shopping and lifestyle location. It is home to an impressive selection of museums, theatres, galleries and festivals,

including the biennial Manchester International Festival, the world’s first festival to commission contemporary original work. For music lovers, the MEN Arena is Europe’s biggest indoor concert venue. With a capacity of 21,000 it provides regular opportunities to see some of the world’s best artists. The city also offers a wealth of shopping options to cater for all tastes including designer boutiques and high-end department stores. For out-oftown shoppers the Trafford Centre is one of the UK’s largest indoor retail malls containing over 230 stores. From a sporting perspective, Manchester enjoys a leading international profile. Its excellent sports infrastructure and facilities include the world famous Old Trafford Stadium, the City of Manchester Stadium and Sportcity – Europe’s largest integrated sporting complex. As well as staging the 2002 Commonwealth Games, the city has hosted many other prestigious sporting events. Amongst these are the World Track Cycling Championships at the Manchester Velodrome, the FINA World Swimming Championships, the Paralympic World Cup, and both the Champions League and UEFA Cup Finals.

£800 million. This included 3.5 million people visiting the city for the first time whilst 15 million people attended a cultural event or attraction. Its famous waterfront, designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2004, has been further enhanced with completion of a new canal section by British Waterways, connecting the Pier Head to the national canal network. The link-up – together with the new Museum of Liverpool, one of the world’s leading museums of its type – will see the city continue to attract hundreds of thousands of extra visitors each year. The culmination of all of these major schemes has significantly enhanced the city’s quality of life and reputation as an international cultural destination. With the opening of Liverpool’s new Arena and Convention Centre, the city

has quickly established itself as a national events and conference destination, with events such as the MTV Music Awards and the BBC Sports Personality of the Year. Liverpool is also attracting major investment to its key business sectors. Its biomedical and biopharmaceutical manufacturing base comprises 80 companies including several multinationals such as Lilly, Novartis, Bristol-Myers Squibb and MedImmune. The Novartis plant is the UK’s biggest flu vaccine manufacturing facility; the majority of its output is supplied to the lucrative US market. Also in Liverpool is the National Biomanufacturing Centre – a leading European bio-design facility and the first of its type in the UK. Liverpool’s financial sector has also experienced strong growth. JPMorgan


LIVERPOOL Liverpool has undergone an impressive economic renaissance over recent years. With a £18.5 billion GVA, major capital projects are restyling its unique skyline. Contemporary steel and glass structures now sit comfortably alongside its classic architectural assets. Resurgence has been driven by almost £4 billion of capital investment and a series of beacon projects. These include the city’s host status as European Capital of Culture 2008; the opening of the new £1 billlion Liverpool One project, Europe’s largest retail-led, city centre development; and the new Cruise Liner Terminal which hosts some of the world’s biggest cruise liners. Staging an ambitious programme of national and international appeal, Capital of Culture year boosted the Liverpool economy by an estimated


The opening of Liverpool’s new Cruise Liner Terminal has further boosted the city’s thriving visitor economy.

“We estimate that Liverpool is now the UK’s third-biggest wealth management centre outside the traditional locations of London and Edinburgh”. Andy Pomfret, Chief Executive, Rathbones Investment Management

PlayStation games. Other high-profile games developers include Bizarre Creations and Evolution Studios. In higher education, Liverpool’s three universities educate over 50,000 students each year. Specialising in medicine, sciences and engineering, The University of Liverpool is home to 21,000 students and almost 5,000 staff. A Russell Group institution, it has research strengths in a range of science disciplines – amongst them bioscience, tropical medicine and chemistry. In 2007, the university generated almost £79 million in research income, collaborating on major projects with over 500 private sector partners. The city is also home to Liverpool John Moores University and Hope University. Liverpool’s excellent transport infrastructure provides access to all UK, European and international markets. By rail, London can be reached in just over 2 hours, whilst by air, Liverpool John Lennon Airport (LJLA) has direct flights to over 60 destinations, carrying 6 million passengers annually. Easyjet and Ryanair are its two biggest operators whilst KLM’s three-times daily service to Amsterdam now connects LJLA passengers to over 650 global destinations across its own and partner networks.


INVEST has set up a major pensions division, joining established financial companies such as RSA, Royal Liver and Alliance & Leicester, now part of the Banco Santander Group. The city’s private equity market is also growing with Barclays Wealth Management and Panmure Gordon joining existing businesses such as Rathbones, Deutsche Bank and Coutts. In maritime trade, the Port of Liverpool – one of Europe’s busiest – has capitalised on its location, securing 40% of the UK’s container business with North America. A planned second terminal will enable the port to handle the largest postPanamax vessels, thus doubling annual capacity to 1.5 million units. In advanced auto-engineering, Tata Group’s Halewood complex is a centre of excellence for ‘lean production’. Jaguar Land Rover exports its prestige X-Type and Freelander 2 models across the globe from the site. Liverpool is also widely recognised as one of the world’s most important locations for computer gaming; 75% of the Northwest’s games industry is based in or around the city. Sony Computer Entertainment has sited its main European creative studio there, employing almost 600 designers and animators to develop many of the world’s most popular


LIVERPOOL KEY DATA GVA £18.43 billion GVA per head £13,615 Population 1.35 million Population % under 16 yrs 18.6 Average weekly pay £362.2 Average house price (April 2009) £117,354 % of pupils at the end 66.4 of Key Stage 4 gaining 5+ A* – C GCSEs and equivalent (2007/8) NVQ4 or above 21.6

Hill Dickinson’s new headquarters at St. Paul’s Square, Liverpool, is located within one of the region’s most prestigious office developments.


The iconic Lovell Telescope in Cheshire is the flagship of the Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics.


CHESHIRE Home to some of the world’s most successful multinational pharmaceutical and R&D businesses, Cheshire is also a major location for financial services, automotive and chemicals processing. AstraZeneca’s Alderley Park facility is the company’s largest global research centre whilst Japanese brand leader Fujifilm also operates its major European R&D facility in Cheshire. From there, its research scientists are developing new digital imaging products for the world consumer market. The Bentley manufacturing facility in Crewe produces one of the world’s most sought-after luxury motoring brands. Investment in design and manufacturing technology at the site has resulted in a significant increase in global sales over the past five years. Similarly, in the highvolume car market, Vauxhall Motors’ Ellesmere Port plant – home to their bestselling Astra range – is one of GM Europe’s most environmentally efficient auto-engineering facilities.


£20.82 billion £20,822 1.03 million 18.9 £394.21 £151,7441 68.1


These figures exclude Halton and Warrington.

Chester Business Park is home to MBNA/Bank of America’s European headquarters and credit card operations.


CHESHIRE KEY DATA GVA GVA per head Population Population % under 16 yrs Average weekly pay Average house price (April 2009) % of pupils at the end of Key Stage 4 gaining 5+ A* – C GCSEs and equivalent (2007/8) NVQ4 or above

over 4,000 staff at Chester Business Park, whilst M&S Money and Halifax Bank of Scotland both manage large-scale financial operations from the same location. Some 12% of Chester’s workforce is employed in the financial sector. With expansive rural areas, picturesque villages and traditional market towns, Cheshire is home to some of the UK’s most desirable living spaces. Its £20,822 GVA per head ranks as the highest in the Northwest region.


In advanced chemicals processing, Cheshire is the UK’s largest producer. The level of overseas investment in the area demonstrates its reputation for chemicals production with multinational businesses such as Ineos Chlor, Shell UK, CIBA Speciality Chemicals and Innospec contributing towards an annual regional sector GVA of £9.4 billion. In financial services, Chester is a key location. MBNA/Bank of America’s European credit card operation employs


LANCASHIRE Over recent decades, Lancashire’s traditional manufacturing sector has transformed itself into a thriving hightechnology/high-skills economy. With a GVA of just under £22 billion, Lancashire enjoys a varied economic base with many respected international businesses represented. But it is in the highly specialised aerospace and advanced manufacturing sector where Lancashire is recognised as a world-class centre of excellence. Across the sub-region, global aerospace businesses such as BAE Systems and Rolls Royce Jet Engines operate multisite facilities, employing almost 40,000 highly skilled technicians and engineers in what is now the UK’s largest concentration of aerospace and defence activity. Investing for the future, BAE’s 350-acre Salmesbury Business Park is expected to become one of Europe’s premier aerospace business locations. In engineering and chemicals, the presence of major businesses such as Alstom Traction, Baxi Group and Akzo Nobel underlines the region’s continued manufacturing expertise. In commercial vehicle manufacture, the Leyland Trucks plant is one of Europe’s most advanced commercial truck facilities. Over recent years, the site has benefited from a wideranging capital investment programme and it now employs 1,500 staff. The hi-tech complex assembles 25,000 light and


Lancashire’s aerospace and defence industry represents the UK’s single largest concentration of design, manufacture and assembly activity.


LANCASHIRE KEY DATA GVA £21.96 billion GVA per head £15,145 Population 1.45 million Population % under 16 yrs 19.2 Average weekly pay £375.5 2 Average house price (April 2009) £114,2922 % of pupils at the end 64.3 of Key Stage 4 gaining 5+ A* – C GCSEs and equivalent (2007/8) NVQ4 or above 24.7 2

These figures exclude Blackburn with Darwen and Blackpool.

75% of Lancaster University Management School’s research activity is ranked as ‘world-leading’ in the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise.

Lancashire has three universities: Lancaster University, the University of Central Lancashire and Edge Hill. Consistently ranked in the UK’s top-10, Lancaster University is a member of the N8 Group of research universities that also includes Manchester and Liverpool. The university’s Management School is one of only two UK business schools rated as a centre of world-class research. The University also has key strengths in environmental research and is home to the Lancaster Environment Centre, a

major facility that brings together leading academic teams including those based at the National Environment Research Council’s Centre for Ecology and Hydrology. The combined resource forms one of Europe’s largest environmental research groups. Lancaster also excels in ICT and computer science; its InfoLab21 facility is a high-quality research, knowledgeshare and business environment for academic researchers, students and the wider ICT business sector.


heavy-duty vehicles each year – 35% of which is earmarked for international export. Lancashire also enjoys excellent connectivity. The Northwest’s motorway network traverses much of the sub-region, providing rapid access to other parts of the Northwest and UK. As well as Blackpool International Airport, Lancashire is well located for both Manchester and Liverpool airports, whilst the ports of Heysham and Fleetwood handle much of the roll-on/roll-off trade between Ireland and the UK.


Lakeland’s 80,000 sq ft national distribution centre in Kendal, Cumbria. The company is one of the UK’s leading kitchenware retail chains.

CUMBRIA Covering an area of just under 6,800 sq km, Cumbria is England’s second largest sub-region. Whilst half of its land mass is designated as National Park or Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the region is internationally recognised in several key business sectors. At the forefront of the UK’s nuclear industry, Cumbria is home to one of the world’s largest concentrations of nuclear facilities and support infrastructures. Almost half of the UK’s combined nuclear workforce – 25,000 employees in total – are based in Cumbria. Its nuclear

capability encompasses all production and decommissioning disciplines; research, development, training, technical support and industry regulation – the last of which is co-ordinated by the Government’s Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, established in Cumbria in recognition of its specialist skills base. Relative to this, Cumbria is playing a pivotal role in the £70 billion decommissioning programme for the UK’s civil nuclear sector. Responsible for over one-third of all UK nuclear activity, Sellafield is regarded as a centre of excellence for energy production.


CUMBRIA KEY DATA GVA GVA per head Population Population % under 16 yrs Average weekly pay Average house price (April 2009) % of pupils at the end of Key Stage 4 gaining 5+ A* – C GCSEs and equivalent (2007/8) NVQ4 or above


Employing 10,000 personnel, Sellafield is the largest and most complex nuclear site in the UK.

£6.97 billion £14,044 496,900 17.5 £360.6 £128,956 63.2

27.7 The complex carries out some of the most advanced and innovative nuclear decommissioning work anywhere in the world. Established by major regional stakeholders, Britain’s Energy Coast is a long-term strategy that will enable Cumbria to build on its expertise in energy production – nuclear, oil, gas and renewables. It is envisaged the 20-year plan will culminate in the creation of 16,000 jobs, and will add up to £2 billion to the Cumbrian economy. Cumbria is at the heart of the specialist marine and offshore engineering sector.

With a workforce of over 5,000, BAE Systems operates a major submarine and shipbuilding facility at Barrow-inFurness, whilst a growing number of businesses have channelled their marine expertise towards the offshore oil and gas technology sector. This has helped to consolidate Cumbria’s position at the forefront of deepwater sub-sea engineering and construction. The tourism sector contributes over £1 billion to the Cumbrian economy. Approximately 15 million people visit the region each year, with the Lake District, England’s largest National Park, and

Hadrian’s Wall, a World Heritage Site, two major attractions for UK and overseas visitors. Over recent years, Cumbria has also become an increasingly popular location for the growing ‘home enterprise’ market encouraged by a major programme to ensure 95% broadband coverage across the sub-region. Created in 2007, the University of Cumbria is one of the UK’s newest academic institutions, and will play a major role in recruiting and retaining key talent. The university has set a target of attracting 20,000 students by 2017.


KNOWLEDGE “A key site in the AstraZeneca global network, our facility at Alderley Park is home to some of the world’s most skilled science professionals working at the frontiers of pharmaceutical research. It is here that several of the world’s most important medicines have been discovered and developed.” Rodger McMillan, Site Leader for R&D, AstraZeneca


The Northwest has achieved a unique position in the advancement of knowledge, innovation and technology. Over the past 200 years, the region has played a pivotal role in major industrial, scientific and technological discoveries. No fewer than 30 teachers or alumni from the universities of Manchester and Liverpool have gone on to achieve the Nobel Prize. Today, the tradition of research and learning continues and thrives in the private sector. The Northwest is home to four of the UK’s top-10 research-led businesses – all undertaking large-scale Research and Development (R&D) activities. Annual private sector R&D investment in the region is £2.2 billion, some 40% higher than the UK average and bigger than that of many European countries. Many of the key players work in close collaboration with the university sector – ether directly with academic departments or through the expanding network of universitybacked research institutes. With 12 universities in total, the Northwest accommodates one of Europe’s biggest academic concentrations with 235,000 students. The region also hosts a large international student population with 25,000 overseas students choosing to study in Northwest universities each year.


Unilever’s Port Sunlight facility in Wirral is the company’s main research centre for its home and personal care product ranges. Accommodating over 700 science and research staff, the ongoing work integrates research from fields as varied as material, physical, biological and process science, helping Unilever develop new brands for the worldwide consumer market. Rolls-Royce’s aero-technology centre in Barnoldswick, Lancashire, is its key research facility for developing lighter, more energy-efficient aircraft engines. Already, Rolls-Royce’s ‘wide chord, hollow fan blade’ technology is incorporated into the RB211 and Trent engine programmes, positioning Rolls-Royce as the global market leader in engine technology for wide-body aircraft. Outside these top level investors, a second-tier of major international companies make a significant contribution to the region’s R&D output. Businesses such as Pilkington, whose R&D centre in Lancashire is one of four such centres worldwide, and Bristol-Myers Squibb, whose long-established Pharmaceutical Research Institute (PRI) in Wirral acts as the company’s primary UK research centre for discovery and development of new medicines. Other businesses undertaking significant research activity in the region include Nuclear Management Partners and FujiFilm.


The strength of Northwest research and development is borne out by the fact that private sector R&D in the region is 40% higher than the UK average.

Business R&D Reflecting the region’s knowledge offering, some of the world’s leading biomedical, aerospace and healthcare businesses operate major Research and Development centres across the Northwest. These include four of the UK’s top R&D investors; AstraZeneca, BAE Systems, Unilever and Rolls-Royce. Each company carries out high-level research activity, which is then transferred and used across its worldwide operations. Almost £2.2 billion of R&D is carried out by the region’s businesses each year. AstraZeneca’s global research centre at Alderley Park is a pharmaceutical centre of expertise that attracts scientists and research teams from around the world. From this impressive, large-scale complex in rural Cheshire, AstraZeneca maintains its world-leading position at the cutting edge of pharmaceutical R&D, investing £400 million in R&D each year. BAE Systems’ extensive R&D facilities in Lancashire ensure the latest aerospace technology is assimilated into some of the world’s most advanced aircraft. Research teams are currently engaged in several multinational R&D programmes including a 25-year Joint Strike Fighter project with US aerospace company Lockheed Martin, as well as leading the international research into new areas such as autonomous non-piloted aircraft, plus the new generation of low carbon engines.


In subjects ranging from Infection and Immunology to Architecture and Materials Science, the University of Liverpool was ranked highly in the Government’s 2008 Research Assessment Exercise.

Universities The Northwest is famous for its contribution to ‘major science’ breakthroughs. The splitting of the atom and the creation of the world’s first modern computer are both attributed to research programmes at the University of Manchester. Today, the region remains at the forefront of high quality international academic research with hundreds of specialist research groups collaborating with other universities and private sector partners on important scientific projects. Over 235,000 students attend Northwest universities, with 65,000 graduating each year. Of these, 15,000 qualify with a Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) degree. In institutional research, the region’s universities have created an exceptionally strong and competitive knowledge base. Activity is structured around the universities’ own academic research teams, in addition to a thriving portfolio of pioneering, multi-disciplinary research institutes. In the Government’s 2008 Research Assessment Exercise (RAE), Northwest universities performed strongly. The exercise is a definitive evaluation of the quality of research undertaken in UK universities and it demonstrated that the three universities of Manchester, Lancaster and Liverpool head the region’s academic research offering.

Highly ranked in all the leading UK academic indices, Lancaster University has world-class strengths in both business and management and environmental science. Its Lancaster Environment Centre is one of the most modern research facilities of its type in Europe. Lancaster University Management School enjoys an international profile; on virtually all measures it is in the UK’s top four of university business schools and amongst the world’s most highly ranked. With almost 5,000 staff (2,000 of whom are academic/research) the University of Liverpool is leading the city’s commercialknowledge renaissance. Specialising in biosciences, veterinary science and engineering, the university collaborates

with a large group of private sector organisations. Multinationals such as Ford, RBS, BAE Systems, AstraZeneca, Rolls Royce, GlaxoSmithKline and Unilever are all beneficiaries of its applied research and expertise. For every £1 million expended, the university creates £1.52 million for the wider regional economy. Liverpool’s ranking in RAE 2008 showed strong improvement with 53% of staff in the top 4* and 3* bands. Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU) is one of the largest providers of science, engineering and technology education in the national system. Its School of Physiotherapy is the UK’s biggest, while the Institute of Education is one of the country’s principal centres for educational research.


At the University of Manchester 65% of research conducted is judged as 4* (world-leading) or 3* (internationally excellent). In terms of volume of staff proportionate to 4* and 3* ratings, the university is placed third in the UK behind only Cambridge and Oxford. With a turnover of £637 million, 34,500 students and 12,000 annual graduates, Manchester is the UK’s largest single-site campus. The university has renowned strengths in life sciences, medicine and economics, and has helped to create more than 100 spin-out companies. Within the UK academic system, it consistently registers one of the highest numbers of applications for Intellectual Property Rights.


Already internationally regarded, the University of Manchester has set itself an ambitious target of a world top-25 ranking by 2015.


TOP 3 NORTHWEST UNIVERSITIES KEY DATA MANCHESTER UNIVERSITY: Annual income £637 million Students 34,500 Graduates 12,000 Research grants and contracts £174 million Staff 11,700 Research/ academic staff 5,700

LANCASTER UNIVERSITY: Annual income £148.7 million Students 17,300 Graduates 4,100 Research grants and contracts £22.5 million Staff 2,500 Research/ academic staff 963

In addition to campuses in Lancaster, Carlisle, Penrith and Ambleside, the University of Cumbria operates a specialist teacher education centre in London.

A contemporary academic institution, Liverpool John Moores University’s key strengths include astronomy, astrophysics, sports science and media science. Its Astrophysics Research Institute operates the world’s largest robotic telescope and is a lead partner in an international network of space science research projects. As well as acknowledged strengths in Architecture and the Built Environment, the University of Salford is developing a new state-ofthe-art higher education centre at the MediaCityUK development at Salford Quays. The centre will encompass high-specification

digital broadcast zones, creative laboratories and performance space for teaching, research and industry collaboration. The university is already a specialist higher education partner to the BBC. Established as recently as Summer 2007, the University of Cumbria has quickly built a student body of 15,000 undergraduates. Already, it has developed valuable research partnerships with the commercial sector on a range of projects covering public health, consumer trends and social science.

OTHER NORTHWEST UNIVERSITIES: Manchester Metropolitan University, Liverpool John Moores University, University of Central Lancashire, University of Salford, University of Chester, Liverpool Hope University, University of Bolton, University of Cumbria, Edge Hill University.


LIVERPOOL UNIVERSITY: Annual income £304 million Students 21,000 Graduates 7,000 Research grants and contracts £78.6 million Staff 5,000 Research/ academic staff 2,100


Research Institutes and Centres Complementing research departments within universities, the Northwest has over 50 Research Institutes and Centres, many multi-institutional. These act as autonomous research facilitators and revenue generators, working with all levels of business – from large multinationals to SMEs. The world’s first medical school of its type, the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM) is recognised by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for world-class research in developing vaccines for tropical infectious diseases. The Lancaster Environment Centre is one of Europe’s largest environmental research centres, bringing together over 300 researchers and lecturers, all working to find solutions to major environmental problems. The Joule Centre for Energy Research provides a focal point for the region to make a growing contribution to national and international research in the field of sustainable energy. Part of the University of Manchester, the Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics is an internationally renowned astronomical facility and home to the Lovell Telescope, the world’s third largest. The centre coordinates research into radio astronomy and astrophysics, in addition to carrying out a lead role in the MERLIN project – a national programme of linked telescopes involved in high-resolution radio observation and data gathering.


Lancaster University’s £35 million Environment Centre provides specialised laboratories and controlled ecospheres for over 300 environmental researchers.


The Organic Materials Innovation Centre conducts specialist research and development into subjects as diverse as biomaterials, composites technology and advanced surface coatings.

Lancaster University’s InfoLab21 is a leading facility for research and development in ICT. It is a high specification knowledge and incubation environment providing ICT research, training and support for established companies, academic spin-outs and businesses in the technology enterprise sector. Since its creation, InfoLab21 has become one of the UK’s foremost ICT knowledge transfer hubs, supporting the university in developing close working partnerships with many leading telecom and innovation specialists; Microsoft, BT, Orange, Cisco and Nokia amongst them. Other major research facilities in the region include the National Centre for Zoonosis Research, the Knowledge Centre for Materials Chemistry, the

Manchester Cancer Research Centre, UK Biobank, Wolfson Molecular Imaging Centre, the Dalton Nuclear Institute, the Northwest Composites Centre, the UK Centre for Tissue Engineering, the Molecular Materials Centre and the Organic Materials Innovation Centre. Key drivers to economic growth, the Northwest’s five major science parks are important contributors to the region’s R&D and innovation offering. Enjoying close links to universities and research institutes – many of which are stakeholders – they provide a knowledge infrastructure that is helping to shape the growth of both new and existing businesses. Designated by UK Government as one of only two major national science

research facilities, the Daresbury Science and Innovation Campus hosts the internationally acknowledged Daresbury Laboratory and the Cockcroft Institute – the UK’s national centre for accelerator science and technology. Daresbury Laboratory is home to the Synchrotron Radiation Source, a world-class facility dedicated to the study of radiation for both academic and applied research. The laboratory employs around 550 staff, with more than 5,500 scientists and engineers – mostly from the academic research community – using its facilities each year. Manchester Science Park plays a pivotal role in supporting the growth of innovative companies across industries such as digital media, biotechnology and ICT, providing business incubation and

facilitating knowledge transfer between the city’s academic base and its thriving enterprise community. One of the UK’s fastest growing, Liverpool Science Park has recently added a second phase of high-specification office and laboratory workspace to enable it to meet demand from the area’s science and technology community. Westlakes Science and Technology Park in Cumbria is an important knowledge centre for the Northwest’s nuclear, healthcare informatics and environmental science sectors. The Heath Business and Technology Park in Cheshire, provides serviced office and laboratory space for over 200 sciencebased and IT businesses of all sizes.


CONNECTIVITY “The Northwest’s integrated transport and logistics infrastructure is vital to the business performance of a business like ours. Its road, air and maritime connectivity is a major contributor to the delivery of BAE Systems’ advanced aero and defence projects around the globe.” Nigel Whitehead, Group Managing Director, Military Air Solutions, BAE Systems


With fast rail links, a major international air hub and one of Europe’s busiest deep-sea ports, the Northwest offers first-class connectivity. Serving over 28 million air passengers each year, the region’s three international airports connect to over 250 worldwide destinations. Its European coverage means that approximately 300 million continental consumers are within a mere three hours flying time of the region. Rail connectivity is equally strong. The major investment programme now complete on the West Coast Main Line is resulting in faster and more frequent services to London. Complementing the rail network is an extensive road infrastructure comprising 70% more motorway than the UK average. Its excellent proximity to the country’s main arterial routes has helped to create a thriving transport and logistics sector, centred around the region’s key motorway access points. The high concentration of motorways provides excellent crossregion connectivity, linking the rural economy with major urban centres. From a maritime perspective, the Port of Liverpool handles over 32 million tonnes of cargo each year, serving over 100 trading routes stretching from China to the South American continent.


The region’s three international airports connect the Northwest to the world’s main economic centres.


Norway Sweden Scotland Denmark ENGLAND’S NORTHWEST Belarus Netherlands Poland Ireland Belgium Germany Czech Republic Guernsey Slovakia Jersey Lux’bourg Austria Hungary Switzerland Slovenia Romania Bulgaria France Italy Corsica Croatia Spain Sardinia Greece Turkey Portugal Malta Syria Cyprus Tunisia Israel Libya Morocco

Vancouver Hamilton

Toronto New York Philadelphia

Chicago Las Vegas Atlanta Sanford Orlando


Canary Islands



Dominican Republic Antigua & Barbuda

Jamaica St Lucia


Cape Verde


Qatar Egypt

Dubai Saudi Arabia India







AIRPORTS Of the Northwest’s three international airports, Manchester is the region’s main global gateway. The largest airport outside London and ranked among the world’s top 20, Manchester is home to over 100 airlines and 300 tour operators, collectively serving 210 worldwide destinations. Services include routes to all of Europe’s major capitals, as well as long-haul flights to 15 North and South American destinations. Manchester also schedules direct flights to Dubai, Singapore and the sub-continent. In addition to its international routes, the airport operates a London shuttle service with 23 daily flights to the capital.


From Manchester, key European capitals such as Brussels are within a convenient 1 to 2-hour flight time.

become a major operations centre for two of Europe’s biggest low-cost carriers – EasyJet and Ryanair. The former carries almost 2.5 million air travellers each year. In addition, Dutch national airline KLM now operates three daily flights to Amsterdam Schipol, which in turn connects air travellers to over 650 worldwide destinations within the KLM and partner networks. Already a significant contributor to Liverpool’s economy, LJLA’s 30-year vision is to create an major international airport that will interface with the city’s maritime offering to create an intermodal cargo super-hub. Handling over half a million passengers each year, Blackpool International Airport offers scheduled UK internal flights as well as a range of holiday charter flights to various Mediterranean destinations. The airport also serves as a base for helicopter operations servicing the Northwest offshore oil and gas industry.


Manchester also offers excellent regional interconnections for travellers arriving and departing. The city centre is just 20 minutes away via car, or travellers can use the rail shuttle that forms part of the airport’s integrated transport interchange – the first of its type in the UK. The airport also operates the World Freight Terminal, the UK’s largest air-logistics facility outside London. Processing upwards of 166,000 tonnes of international cargo each year, the terminal’s operation has attracted several global operators including US logistics business, FedEx. The airport is a major employer with 19,000 people working onsite. With annual passenger levels approaching 6 million, Liverpool John Lennon Airport (LJLA) has been one of Europe’s fastest growing airports in recent years. It now operates scheduled services to over 60 domestic and European destinations. Since 2000, LJLA has


RAIL The Northwest’s rail network is a major regional asset. The West Coast Main Line is one of Europe’s most important routes, linking the region to London, Scotland and mainland Europe via the Eurostar network. Major investment in track modernisation has significantly reduced journey times from the region to the capital – a Virgin Pendolino departing from Manchester arrives in London just over two hours later. Demand from the business community means that 47 trains operate daily between the two cities, demonstrating both ease of connectivity and the inter-relationship between the two biggest economic centres in the UK. In total, over 100 trains run from the Northwest to the capital each day.

The recently completed £8 billion upgrade of the West Coast Main Line will see passenger services increase by 30% and freight by 70%.


All major UK cities are within a 4-hour driving radius of the Northwest.

ROAD The Northwest is at the heart of England’s motorway network. With one-quarter of the nation’s motorway miles within its borders, the region benefits from comprehensive road coverage and excellent connectivity to the national UK motorway system. The region’s road infrastructure is strategically placed at the intersection of the main North-South (M6) and East-West (M62/M56) arterial routes. These, in turn, offer access to all major UK cities and ports. The M62 provides an important economic corridor linking three of the region’s main commercial centres: Manchester, Liverpool and Warrington. Benefiting from the excellent road connections, some 16,000 freight haulage companies operate across the region. The M62 is the focus for two important regional strategic projects. Kingsway, near Rochdale, is a 450-acre mixed business and industrial park adjacent to the motorway. It will bring together local, national and international businesses within a large-scale commercial environment. Similar in ambition and scale, the 575-acre Omega development is part of a regionally important long-term project designed to become one of Europe’s largest business, technology and logistics hubs. Intersected by the M62 at Warrington, construction of this ‘super-complex’ will be phased-in over the next 25 years.


Liverpool is adding a £100 million post-Panamax container terminal to its already impressive handling capacity.

ICT Served by a group of leading telecommunications providers that includes Virgin Media, BT, Cogent and Global Crossing, the Northwest enjoys over 99% broadband coverage. Manchester is the UK’s only city outside London to have its own dedicated Public Internet Exchange Point, which means its broadband infrastructure has direct, local connection to the global internet. The region will also be among the first to profit from BT’s £1.5 billion investment in super-fast, fibrebased broadband technology. The initial rollout will see 140,000 homes and businesses in the Manchester area benefiting from average connection speeds

of 40 Mb/s – more than 10 times faster than those currently available. As demand increases for highly connected and secure server environments, a growing number of colocation and independent data centre specialists are providing vital services and facilities to the business and knowledge sectors. IT partners such as TelecityGroup, based at Manchester Science Park, operate a network of customised data centres that act as highly secure connectivity and content data hubs. These allow businesses and organisations to store, share or distribute high-value information, content and media in a protected environment.


PORTS Spread over 1200 acres and handling 32 million tonnes of cargo annually, the Port of Liverpool is one of the largest in Northern Europe. It has capitalised on its west coast location by securing 40% of the UK-North Atlantic container trade. Correspondingly, it has developed global trade routes to more than 100 maritime destinations. The Seaforth Container Terminal handles almost 700,000 containers each year and is the UK’s leading gateway for the import of grain, animal feed and oil. The port complex also comprises Liverpool Freeport, the UK’s largest Free Zone accommodating more than 3 million sq ft of storage, warehousing and logistics facilities The expanding roll-on/roll-off trade with Ireland has considerably increased Heysham’s handling capacity to 4 million tonnes each year. The port also acts as a major service route for the offshore oil and gas industries. Businesses such as BP, Shell and Conoco supply their Irish Sea platforms from Heysham.



“I love coming back to this region – particularly to my home city of Liverpool. The Northwest has so much to offer; its vitality and creative pulse have never been more tangible. You can see it in the region’s amazing cities with their exciting and constantly evolving skylines… and of course in its culture and music, which in my view is equal to that on offer in any other European region.” Sir Simon Rattle, Principal Conductor, Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra

The Northwest’s vibrant lifestyle and cultural offering reflects the diversity of its natural environment, its cities and its people. The region is composed of attractive landscapes encompassing mountains, lakes and coastline, as well as modern and cosmopolitan urban centres. Approximately one-third of the region is designated as National Park or an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The Lake District is known throughout the world for its inspiring scenery and sweeping locations. But with miles of beautiful coastline, ancient forests, precious natural habitats and traditional market towns, the region offers true diversity in its lifestyle offering. Complementing this, the cultural offer of Liverpool and Manchester includes world-class symphony orchestras, acclaimed museums and a wealth of galleries and arts institutions. Several internationally acclaimed arts and cultural festivals are staged in the region’s cities and the Northwest remains a world-famous location for popular culture and music. With first-class education, competitive housing costs and shorter commuting times than many UK regions, the Northwest offers an excellent quality of life.



AVERAGE HOUSE PRICES (APRIL 2009) Manchester Liverpool Cheshire1 Lancashire2 Cumbria The Northwest benefits from shorter commuting times and a competitive housing infrastructure.

warehouse and heritage developments, as well as carefully preserved Victorian and Georgian quarters or striking new-build apartment schemes. Producing some of the UK’s most imaginative inner-city regeneration projects, Northwest architectural-development companies such as Urban Splash and Beetham are driving urban renaissance. For those who prefer a suburban environment, the region’s cities have some of the most established residential areas anywhere in the UK. Places such as Didsbury and Chorlton in Manchester and Calderstones and Woolton Village in Liverpool are leafy suburban areas within convenient travelling distance of their


Figures exclude Halton and Warrington.


Figures exclude Blackburn with Darwen and Blackpool.

respective city centres. Cheshire, Lancashire and Cumbria also offer an abundance of highly desirable and soughtafter locations. In Cheshire, the area surrounding Chester and to the south of the county is dotted with villages and tranquil rural communities. Additionally, affluent areas such as Knutsford, Altrincham and Wilmslow reflect the economic success the region enjoys. In Lancashire, the Ribble Valley and Trough of Bowland provide hugely attractive living locations. Cumbria’s wonderful landscape and wide-open spaces offer broad scope for an attractive work-life balance.


HOUSING The Northwest offers both diversity and quality in its range of urban and rural locations for living, yet house prices are significantly below the national average. All main centres of commerce are complemented by a varied and affordable housing infrastructure. From chic waterside apartments to compact family homes, rural conservation areas to stylish urban living spaces, the region boasts a broad selection of medium-cost, established or higher-end living options. Both Manchester and Liverpool now have two of the largest city centre residential communities in the country. Generally populated by younger professionals, they offer an eclectic mix of converted loft,

£108,520 £117,354 £151,744 £114,292 £128,956


SCHOOLS The Northwest has some of the UK’s best performing state and independent schools. In the 2008 school league tables, five of the 25 highest attaining primary schools in England were located in the region. The region also has 10 of the country’s top 75 performing schools at A-level. Many other schools consistently perform above the national average. The Northwest is home to nine of the UK’s remaining 164 state grammar schools. In the broader independent sector it hosts 193 schools in total, catering for pre-preparatory age up to university entrance level. Schools such as Manchester Grammar and Manchester High School for Girls, Merchant Taylors and Blue Coat School in Liverpool, Lancaster Royal Grammar School, Stonyhurst College in Lancashire, Queen Elizabeth Grammar School in Cumbria and the King’s School, Macclesfield, all enjoy a long-standing academic tradition. Examination results consistently place these schools in the top quartile of national GCSE and A-level league tables. LIVING

The Northwest has a first-class education offering, including 10 of the country’s top 75 A-level performing schools.


The Northwest has over 30 major public art galleries, many containing internationally recognised collections.

Manchester’s Hallé Orchestra – the UK’s oldest – and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra are two of the most respected names in international classical music; both regularly perform on the world’s leading concert stages. The Northwest has one of the largest concentrations of theatres outside London. Over 100 professional theatre venues are based throughout the region including the Everyman, Playhouse and Empire theatres in Liverpool; the Lowry, Royal Exchange and Opera House in Manchester; and Bolton’s famous Octagon. As well as high-quality locally based theatre, many high-profile touring productions – including plays, opera and musicals – visit Northwest theatres as a part of their international schedules.


CULTURE The Northwest is home to a multi-faceted cultural offering. Its creative talent – artists, poets, writers, musicians and performers – has made a significant impact in the world of arts and culture. Internationally, the region is celebrated for the range and wealth of its cultural assets; art galleries, museums, theatres, concert halls, international festivals, public art, heritage sites and acclaimed architecture. Liverpool has both the largest number of museums and galleries outside of London, as well as the largest collection of Grade I and II listed buildings outside the capital. The city is home to Tate Liverpool, the Walker Art Gallery, FACT and the World Museum. In Manchester, the city hosts the Whitworth and Manchester Art Galleries, Urbis and the Imperial War Museum North.

La Machine’s exciting mechanical spider was a keynote event during Liverpool’s 2008 European Capital of Culture year.


Manchester’s MEN Arena and Liverpool’s new Echo Arena are two of the country’s most popular indoor concert venues. Hosting over 1 million visitors each year, the 21,000-capacity MEN Arena is an international location that attracts some of the biggest names in contemporary music. Liverpool’s Echo Arena is an impressively appointed, stateof-the-art 10,000-plus seater auditorium – a versatile space, ideal for concerts, sport and other major events. In youth culture and popular music, the Northwest remains one of the world’s most important locations. Liverpool is regarded as the UK’s most musical city, producing more number 1 records than any other. The Beatles legacy is still a major factor in the city’s tourism offering, whilst Manchester’s music pedigree is defined by the ‘Madchester’ scene of the 1980s/90s, producing bands such as the Smiths, Stone Roses and Oasis. The Northwest can also claim some of the most iconic music and dance venues with the Cavern, Hacienda and Cream well known across the world. The region offers a myriad of cultural events and experiences for visitors from all over the world. Staged biennially, the performance-based Manchester International Festival is the world’s first major arts festival for showcasing new and original works by contemporary artists. The Liverpool Biennial is now the biggest contemporary visual arts event outside the Vienna Festival – exhibiting some of art’s most innovative and groundbreaking work in locations across the city. Liverpool’s European Capital of Culture year in 2008 was a dazzling celebration of its art, music, literature, architecture, heritage and sport that leaves a remarkable legacy and springboard for its future cultural offering. The exciting calendar of 7,000 events, 60 premieres and 10,000 artists culminated in 15 million visits to the city’s many cultural venues. Highlights included the staging of the Turner and Stirling Prizes,


The Northwest’s public art offering has also won international acclaim with a large number of bold and ambitious art installations. Panopticans is a unique series of public artworks set within some of Lancashire’s most inspiring rural locations. Featured are eye-catching works such as The Atom on Pendle Hill, Halo near Haslingden and Singing Ringing Tree, perched high above the hills surrounding Burnley. Antony Gormley’s Another Place in Crosby, north Liverpool, has received much international attention for both its imagination and scale – 100 life-size, cast-iron figures looking out to sea and positioned along a 3 km stretch of shoreline. Also in Liverpool, Taro Chiezo’s iconic Superlambanana sculpture has demonstrated the effectiveness of public realm art projects in engaging with local communities. Designed by Spanish artist Jaume Plensa, Dream in St Helens is an imposing 66ft-high high statue overlooking the M62 motorway. Other major public art ventures in the region include Bolton’s Spirit of Sport installation, Serena de la Hey’s 16ft-high Land Giant steel and willow sculpture overlooking the M65 and Simon Hitchen’s Coast Line in Workington, comprising 14 large illuminated stone seats carved from locally-quarried Cumbrian red granite.


The Singing Ringing Tree musical sculpture is part of Lancashire’s Panopticans network of major public artworks.

MTV Music Awards, the Tall Ships Race, Gustav Klimt at the Tate, Sir Paul McCartney’s concert at Anfield, La Machine’s 50ft mechanical spider and Sir Simon Rattle conducting both the Berlin Philharmonic and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestras. In Cumbria, visitors can enjoy a range of attractions made famous by the Lakeland writers and poets. Dove Cottage and the Wordsworth Museum in Grasmere are dedicated to the life of William Wordsworth, one of Britain’s greatest Romantic poets. The National Trust now runs Hill Top, the picturesque 17th-century farmhouse in Ambleside where Beatrix Potter created many of her much-loved characters and children’s stories. Set in Roman and Jacobean gardens, Tullie House Museum and Gallery in Carlisle is home to an important Pre-Raphaelite collection of artworks, together with historical exhibitions covering Cumbrian civilisation during Roman occupation and the Dark Ages. Cumbria has also set in place an exciting 4-year programme of international arts and performance. Lakes Alive will feature some of the world’s top outdoor performers in street festivals, fringe theatre, contemporary circus and cultural events staged across Lakeland villages, towns and much of its rural landscape.


Energetic and exciting, Manchester buzzes with great nightlife and quality restaurants.

Harvey Nichols, Louis Vuitton, Hermes and Armani all have outlets in the city, whilst Liverpool’s retail offering has been comprehensively transformed by Grosvenor’s £1billion Liverpool One project. As one of Europe’s biggest shopping/mixed-use schemes it will position Liverpool as a major retail destination. The Northwest also hosts two major out-of-town retail locations. Ideally located on the M60 orbital system, the Trafford Centre has a catchment area larger and more populated than any other regional shopping complex (5.3 million

people within a 45-minute drive). Over 30 million retail consumers visit its 230 stores each year. The Cheshire Oaks Designer Outlet complex near Chester enjoys excellent connections with the M53/M56 motorway network. It is the UK’s largest outlet village, attracting over 6.7 million shoppers to its 145 stores portfolio each year. Chester itself offers first-class shopping within its historic Chester Rows. Here, high street names and designer boutiques are situated within one of the city’s most attractively preserved medieval quarters.


URBAN LIVING Thriving and vibrant, Manchester and Liverpool are two of Europe’s most dynamic cities. Their cosmopolitan style and contemporary built environments make them exciting places to live, work and relax. Both offer broad diversity in the range of living locations they provide for city dwellers. Café-bars, restaurants, theatres and exciting nightlife are just on the doorstep, together with the expansive cultural infrastructure major cities offer. The region also boasts an impressive retail offering – Manchester is home to some of the UK’s top lifestyle-fashion brands.


The inspiring Lakeland landscape surrounding Derwentwater is a popular attraction for visitors from all over the world.


OUTDOORS AND HERITAGE Stretching from the Scottish border to the South Cheshire Plain, England’s Northwest spans an area of just over 14,000 square kilometres. Within its boundary are some of the UK’s most beautiful and inspiring natural landscapes. With the Lake District, the Northwest boasts England’s largest national park. In total, the region has three areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, 32 nature reserves and a magnificent heritage coast. Passing through some of the most beautiful parts of England, the Hadrian’s Wall National Trail is an unbroken 84-mile pathway that stretches the length of this historic World Heritage Site. As well as its inspiring setting, the Lake District offers numerous water-based activities – sailing, canoeing, kayaking and windsurfing. For adventureseekers, a wide range of outdoor sports are catered for. The Lake District is a popular location for mountain biking, rock climbing, trekking and high-energy water sports.


Chester’s Eastgate Street. The famous Victorian clock above the Eastgate arch is the world’s second most photographed clock after Big Ben.

famous Chester Walls – based on the original Roman fortifications – are some of the city’s key attractions. Over half a million visitors take a tour of the walls every year. Lancaster, too, is rich in history, being home to some of the most important surviving examples of Norman and medieval building and architecture including Lancaster Castle – one of the best preserved castles in the country. Gardens also play a significant role in the region’s cultural offering with an extensive choice of locations for visitors of all ages to enjoy. Cheshire is one of the country’s foremost destinations for garden lovers with one in eight of all UK garden visits taking place there. Tatton Park is one of the finest examples of a complete country estate, with its extensive gardens forming the backdrop to the prestigious RHS Flower Show staged every July. Throughout the year, the mansion house, gardens and deer park welcome over 750,000 visitors. Other locations include the internationally regarded Ness Botanic Gardens and Arley Hall, recently voted one of Europe’s top 50 gardens. In Liverpool, the 200-acre Sefton Park includes the famous glasspanelled Palm House – a living museum housing part of the renowned Liverpool Botanical Collection.


For those who prefer more leisurely pursuits, the region has a wealth of visitor attractions and places of interest spanning all periods of history. Port Sunlight Village is an historic and much visited attraction in Wirral. Built in 1888, this ‘model village’ was created by industrialist Lord Leverhulme for workers at his Lever Brothers soap factory. It comprises 900 beautifully preserved Grade II listed houses, cottages and public amenities, as well as attractive gardens and the acclaimed Lady Lever Art Gallery. This unique gallery contains many outstanding British 18th and 19th-century paintings, an acknowledged Wedgwood collection, tapestries and embroideries. The National Trust manages many historic locations ranging from ancient castles and grand country estates – Dunham Massey, Little Moreton Hall and Lyme Park for example – to places of more contemporary history such as the childhood homes of John Lennon and Sir Paul McCartney – restored to how the properties were during the famous duo’s formative years in Liverpool. In terms of heritage, Chester is arguably the UK’s most celebrated site for Roman and medieval archaeology and architectural preservation. Its amphitheatre, medieval Rows and world-


The scale and imagination behind Liverpool’s Another Place has been rewarded with wide international acclaim.

walkers as well as the Northwest’s longest coastal walk. Almost 30% of England’s native sand dunes can be found in the region, with the hills at Ainsdale and Formby, near Liverpool, forming one of Europe’s largest undeveloped dune systems. Home to protected seabird colonies, the area around St Bees in Cumbria has achieved Heritage Coast status – its birdlife attracting observers and naturalists from across Europe. A Site of Special Scientific Interest and a Special Protection Area for Birds, the Morecambe Bay estuary is the UK’s most important breeding ground for waders, whilst further south, the Wirral Country Park is a

network of trails and rolling countryside that take in some of the region’s most striking coastal scenery. Following the course of a disused railway line, the park’s main trail, the Wirral Way, overlooks the mudflats and salt marshes of the Dee Estuary and Hilbre Island, two nationally recognised habitats for oystercatchers and grey seals. Comprising dunes and natural pine woods, the Sefton Coastal Path is home to one of the few remaining populations of red squirrel. This rare native species attracts visitors from across the region. A short distance down the coast at Crosby beach, Antony Gormley’s Another Place – 100 cast-iron sculptures

of the artist himself – has become a major feature of the local shoreline. The Northwest also offers an abundance of traditional seaside resorts. Blackpool is still Europe’s largest and most visited seaside holiday destination, attracting over 7 million tourists each year. Its Pleasure Beach complex boasts Europe’s fastest rollercoaster ride, whilst its world-famous illuminations (lit by over 500,000 bulbs) bring hundreds of thousands of visitors to the resort each autumn. The region’s other established seaside resorts – Southport, Morecambe and Lytham St Annes – remain enduringly popular with UK holidaymakers.


COASTLINE The Northwest enjoys a coast of exceptional beauty and diversity. Comprising dramatic seascapes, cliff formations, estuaries, peninsulas, sandy beaches, maritime ports, wildlife habitats and key nature reserves, it runs almost 1,400 km in length. More than 80% of the coastline is designated as internationally important for wildlife – particularly the region’s indigenous and migrating bird populations. Much of the coastline can be explored on foot, or by the numerous cycle and trekking routes that navigate its landscape. The Cumbria Coastal Way offers an outstanding number of routes for hikers and


The region’s Premier League clubs host some of the biggest stars in world football.

SPORT With a host of world-renowned teams, high-profile events and Olympic-standard facilities, the Northwest is a major international sporting location. Rich in tradition and pedigree, the region is a hotbed of top-class football. Manchester United and Liverpool – two of the world’s most successful football clubs – are joined by six other Northwest teams in the FA Premier League. The strength of the region’s football offering is further endorsed by the presence of the National Football Museum at Preston’s Deepdale Stadium. The Museum displays one of the world’s finest collections of football memorabilia including its centrepiece, the FIFA collection. The quality of the region’s sporting facilities and infrastructure is reflected in its hosting of many prestigious international events. The Grand National, staged at Aintree’s impressively refurbished horseracing venue, is the sport’s greatest steeplechase and watched by over 600 million people across the world. A legacy of Manchester hosting the 2002 Commonwealth Games is the City of Manchester stadium – the venue for the 2008 UEFA Cup Final. It now forms part of the Manchester Sportcity complex – integrating some of the best aquatics, squash, tennis, athletics and cycling facilities in Europe. The Manchester Velodrome is the home and national training base of Team GB’s hugely successful cycling squad at the Beijing Olympics. In Paralympic sport, Manchester has hosted the Paralympic World Cup four years in succession. Lancashire’s famous Old Trafford ground is home to international test cricket, whilst the prestigious British Open Golf Championship is a regular visitor to the Northwest. The Northwest is also a hotbed of Rugby League, being home to four engage Super League teams and annually hosts one of its flagship events, the Super League Grand Final at Old Trafford.


The Northwest has the world’s largest concentration of championship links golf courses.

GOLF COAST Known as England’s Golf Coast, the Northwest coastal area offers one of the finest stretches of links courses anywhere in the world. It boasts 20 first-class courses, including three ‘Royal’ Championship venues – Lytham & St Annes, Birkdale and Liverpool. Since 1897, these world-famous courses have together hosted the Open Championship no fewer than 29 times; twice since 2006. In total, the Northwest has 160 golf courses – most within an hour’s drive of the coast. Besides its Championship venues, other famous courses include Southport and Ainsdale – the first course to host two Ryder Cups – and Hillside, adjacent to Royal Birkdale, and regarded as the best course never to have staged an Open Championship.


USEFUL CONTACTS NORTHWEST REGIONAL DEVELOPMENT AGENCY (NWDA) The NWDA leads the economic development of England’s Northwest and is responsible for attracting foreign direct investment, supporting businesses and promoting the region’s outstanding quality of life. Tel: +44 (01925) 400 495



The NWDA covers investment opportunities across the entire Northwest region and provides free and confidential advice to companies looking to invest here. We also work with key investment agencies who have detailed knowledge on specific areas of the region.

The NWDA works closely with a number of industry organisations across the region who provide specific expertise in key sectors. Automotive Northwest Automotive Alliance T: +44 (0) 1695 567 255

Financial and Professional Services Pro. Manchester T: +44 (0) 161 833 0964

Manchester MIDAS Tel: +44 (0) 161 877 3000

Aerospace Northwest Aerospace Alliance T: +44 (0) 1282 604 444

Professional Liverpool T: +44 (0) 151 795 0125

Liverpool The Mersey Partnership Tel: +44 (0) 151 237 3931

Advanced Flexible Materials Northwest Textiles Network T: +44 (0) 1204 374 840

Energy and Environmental Technologies Envirolink Northwest T: +44 (0) 1925 813 200

Cheshire Cheshire and Warrington Economic Alliance Tel: +44 (0) 1606 738 083

Biomedical Bionow T: +44 (0) 1925 400 345

Food and Drink Food Northwest T: +44 (0) 1928 511 011

Websites Corporate Business/Investment Tourism Culture OVERSEAS CONTACTS USA Chicago 001 312 379 5383 Atlanta 001 404 995 7083 Boston 001 617 973 5053 West Coast 001 949 798 5626 Bay Area 001 949 798 5649 Canada 001 416 202 6126 Australia Tel: +61 2 9818 0980 Japan Tel: +81 3 5472 3060

China Tel: +86 136 36 526219

Cumbria Invest in Cumbria Tel: +44 (0) 1768 895 350

Chemicals Chemicals Northwest T: +44 (0) 01928 515 678 Digital and Creative Industries Northwest Vision and Media T: +44 (0) 870 609 4481


India Tel: +91 9833 6161 45

Lancashire Lancashire Economic Partnership Tel: +44 (0)1254 300 460

ENGLAND’S NORTHWEST IS MADE UP OF FIVE DIVERSE SUB-REGIONS MANCHESTER – GVA of over £44 billion, the Northwest’s largest economic sub-region – The UK’s biggest financial and professional services centre outside London – 65 of the UK’s top 100 companies have a base in the city – Ranked by Cushman & Wakefield as one of Europe’s top 20 cities to locate to – University of Manchester is the UK’s biggest single-site academic campus LIVERPOOL – GVA of over £18 billion; hosts one of Europe’s largest biomanufacturing clusters – Port of Liverpool is the UK’s biggest importer of oil, grain and agricultural feed – A world location for interactive games; hosts Sony’s European design centre – Renowned cultural assets; Liverpool waterfront is a UNESCO World Heritage Site CHESHIRE – GVA of over £20 billion; a major R&D location and home to AstraZeneca’s global pharmaceutical research facility – International centre-of-excellence for advanced chemicals processing – Strengths in advanced automotive production; major manufacturing plants at Bentley and Vauxhall – A recognised financial services location; HBOS, M&S Money and MBNA manage large-scale operations at Chester Business Park LANCASHIRE – GVA of £21.9 billion; a global centre for aerospace and defence activity; hosts the UK’s largest aerospace workforce – Lancashire University Management School is a world-recognised faculty of research and teaching – BAE Systems and Rolls-Royce Jet Engines manage major research facilities across Lancashire – joint partnerships with other aerospace businesses/ international regions CUMBRIA – GVA of £6.9 billion; the Northwest’s largest geographic sub-region – One of the world’s leading areas for nuclear energy processing, research and expertise – Half of the UK’s nuclear workforce is employed in West Cumbria – Headquarters of the UK’s Nuclear Decommissioning Authority – A leading centre for shipbuilding and submarine construction; BAE Systems has large-scale operations at Barrow-in-Furness


Airport City Town


Motorway Rail Major Port Port

Carlisle Airport SOLWAY FIRTH


Carlisle European Freightliner Terminal

Silloth University Science Park Lake District National Park Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty

Penrith Workington Keswick






Barrow-in-Furness Lancaster Heysham FOREST OF BOWLAND

Lancashire Blackpool Blackpool Airport




To Leeds and East

Bolton Wigan



St Helens


To Sheffield


Stockport Manchester Airport

Liverpool Airport

Macclesfield Wales Chester

Cheshire Crewe

Source: Ordnance Survey Crown Copyright 2009. All Rights Reserved GD021102.

To Midlands, London and South East

20762-1 Covers for web edition:covers



With an economy of almost £120 billion, bigger than 15 EU countries, England’s Northwest operates on a truly international scale. The Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA) leads the economic development of the region and works with companies in a variety of industries and countries in attracting foreign direct investment. We have one of the UK’s strongest track records in assisting large companies and SMEs with their location and expansion decisions. Our range of services includes: – Advice on availability and costs of sites and premises – Guidance on grants and financial incentives – Introduction to research and technology expertise – Information on staff recruitment and training – Networking with potential supply-chain partners – Introductions to other business professionals, including lawyers, accountants, property agents, business consultants and recruitment agencies – Organising briefing visits to the region for key company personnel For further information about our services visit or call us on +44 (0) 1925 400 495.

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