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South East Cornwall businesses
invited to have their say on local investment priorities

Local businesses and traders are invited to meet with representatives of the Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and local Cornwall Councillors to discuss local investment priorities to develop the South East Cornwall economy, growing more prosperous businesses and better, higher skill jobs for local people.

An open meeting will be held in Liskeard Public Hall on Monday 14th November, 6.00 pm – 8.00 pm, and all businesses from across the Liskeard, Looe, Callington, Saltash, Torpoint and local rural areas are invited to attend.

The meeting follows 18 months' work by the South East Cornwall Collective Chambers of Commerce (SECCCC) to develop and agree a set of business investment priorities for the area, through a series of workshops, surveys and other consultations. SECCCC was set up in 2014 to bring together business representative organisations across the area and has worked closely with South East Cornwall Tourism Association, town chambers and other business groups to develop its priorities. Cornwall Councillors, the LEP and the Cornwall and Plymouth Chambers of Commerce have also been involved in the consultations.

SECCCC organiser Jane Pascoe said: "This is an important opportunity for businesses from this part of Cornwall to get involved in shaping the future of our local economy. We have so many great small businesses based here already, and I firmly believe that with the right approach to investment and support, there are massive growth opportunities for the area. We've worked closely with the LEP and Cornwall Councillors to set our priorities for the future, so it's really important that businesses from right across the area come together at this meeting to discuss how we take those forward together."

Top of the priority list for local businesses is long term investment to upgrade the A38 into a proper expressway linking South East Cornwall with Plymouth, Exeter and the M5. Investment in other specific infrastructure improvements, skills development, employment land and workspace have been identified, which will support growth in important local sectors including manufacturing and engineering, agrifood, creative and digital, marine and tourism.

The proposed investment plan recognises that the area's economy is based around the five market towns of Callington, Liskeard, Looe, Saltash and Torpoint and the rural areas around them. The investment proposals have been drawn up to benefit the whole area with specific suggestions for each town. Sue Brownlow of SECCCC said: "It's been really clear talking with local businesses that a single hub approach focused just on developing one big town simply won't work in this area. We need a five-towns approach that builds on the strengths of the area and enables each market town to prosper in its own way."

The LEP Chair Mark Duddridge, who lives in South East Cornwall and is the former Managing Director of Ginsters, and LEP Chief Executive Sandra Rothwell will be attending the meeting.

Sandra said: "The voice of business is crucial to shaping the future of our economy which is why the LEP has been working with the chambers and others to identify future investment priorities in South East Cornwall. By agreeing this collaborative vision we can work together to create a prosperous and inclusive local economy."