The creative industries, along with ICT, the financial services sector and biotechnology seem to be paving the way for a slow growth in Nottingham’s economy. Despite the plethora of empty shops, Nottingham’s GVA (gross value added) has consistently grown since 1995 and now stands at 12.1 billion pounds, leading the way in the East Midlands region.
Furthermore, company registrations in Nottingham reached an all-time high during the first half of this year. 1945 companies were formed, the highest half-year figure on record for the city. Alongside this we seeing a slowing down of company closures, a 13% decrease when compared to 2011.
This all seems good news for Council leaders who earlier this week signed a £60m City Deal at a Cities Summit attended by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg and Cities Minister Greg Clark. As part of the package, Nottingham’s bid will pump up to £60m into the local economy, with the investment focused on the city’s flagship Creative Quarter. It is hoped that the ‘Creative Quarter’, will become a business ‘incubator without walls,’ supporting new business growth by offering mentoring, training and business rates discounts for up and coming young businesses. Alongside this there will also be investment in more tram lines, developing the Enterprise Zone on the Boots campus, and the establishment of a £35m venture capital fund to ensure that Nottingham companies have access to finance to enable them to grow.
This may still be a long way off (5 to 10 years), but for the many people who will be attending the Annual Jobs’s fair next week, it may offer some good news.
For further details about the Nottingham City Deal go to the One Nottingham website.
The Nottingham Jobs Fair is on Tuesday 25 September from 10am – 4pm at the Capital FM Arena. Go to the City Council website here for further details
Jagdish Patel is a Nottingham based photographer and a Director at the Nottingham Photographers’ Hub a social enterprise helping vulnerable communities enter the creative sector.