Business leaders have revealed that up to 2,000 jobs are secured or in the pipeline as a result of the Ceramic Valley Enterprise Zone.
The zone is one of the most successful of its kind in the UK, providing a huge boost to the economy in Stoke-on-Trent and North Staffordshire.
The news comes as an event was held today to mark the achievements to date and to officially launch Network Space’s £11 million Tunstall Arrow development on the site.
Attendees were given a sneak peek inside Tunstall Arrow, which has seen three of its five units let prior to completion with each of the new occupiers agreeing 15-year lease terms. Negotiations are at an advanced stage with occupiers for the two remaining units.
Unit three, which is 10,208 square feet, has been pre-let to Netherlands-based Boels Rental, the largest provider of hire equipment and tools in Europe.
Pramac-Generac UK, which manages and distributes its world-leading brands, Pramac Power Generation and Generac Mobile Products to the hire, rail, construction and infrastructure sectors, amongst others throughout the UK, has completed an agreement for lease for unit four, comprising 20,465 square feet and will be relocating from its present location in Crewe.
Premium international balustrade manufacturer Q-Railing has taken unit one, a 43,500 square foot space, with early access provided for fit-out works. The company has outgrown its existing premises in Wolstanton and is relocating to a 43,500 square foot unit at Tunstall Arrow, allowing it to stay in the local area.
Tuesday’s celebration included 200 invited guests. There were presentations by key representatives from across the project, covering subjects such as skills, the growth of the local economy, partnership working, the Tunstall Arrow site, and commercial property.
Conservative Councillor Abi Brown, Deputy Leader of the City Council and Chair of the Ceramic Valley Enterprise Zone Board, said: “The potential of the Enterprise Zone has always been huge and the success to date shows just how attractive it is. The interest we have received from national and international businesses is fantastic for this city.
“We have worked with developers such as Network Space from a very early stage to understand their needs. There has also been a significant push to promote the benefits of the enterprise zone, including work at international trade shows and on innovative marketing projects.
“The fantastic news on jobs which are secured and in the pipeline is a direct result of the hard work by everyone across the enterprise zone project and we are extremely excited about the further benefits this will bring for Stoke-on-Trent.”
The 130,000 square foot Tunstall Arrow development includes five industrial units, ranging from 10,208 square feet to 43,500 square feet.
The scheme has been developed by Network Space and is being built by Caddick Construction. All the units come with self-contained yards as well as office space.
The development, based in Tunstall, has fantastic links to the transport network including the nearby A500 and M6.
Tunstall Arrow is being delivered in partnership with the city council, with grant funding coming from the Ceramic Valley Enterprise Zone Development Fund.
The Ceramic Valley is one of only 48 enterprise zones across the country and has the potential for 6,700 jobs. The zone has the potential to include 3.3 million square feet of commercial floor space – the equivalent of more than 50 football pitches – with six key sites along the A500 corridor.
Enterprise zone status helps to reduce the costs and barriers to business growth, making the site a real pull for international investors.
Benefits to businesses include a significant rate reduction over a five-year period on five of the sites, enhanced capital allowances at the Etruria Valley site, and in certain circumstances, gap funding can be considered to support development.
The six areas will regenerate largely brownfield land, with the potential for many multi-million pound investments over the next decade.
The Ceramic Valley was launched in 2016 following a successful bid to the Conservative Government.