Skip to content

Positive developments are happening in Lancashire says Lancashire Growth boss

Downtown In Business hosted Simon Lawrence, Director of Growth and Regeneration at Lancashire County Council, at the latest event in their popular In Conversation with' series.

On Thursday 27th June 2024, business leaders from across Lancashire gathered for an engaging evening of insights and networking at the latest instalment of Downtown’s ‘In Conversation with’ series.

Downtown in Business hosted Simon Lawrence, Director of Growth and Regeneration at Lancashire County Council, at this impactful dinner event, in the superb surrounding of Stanley House Hotel and Spa.

The ‘In Conversation with Simon Lawrence’ round table dinner provided attendees with a unique opportunity to connect with key figures in the region and delve into the challenges and future of growth and regeneration.

Drawing upon over three decades of experience in local government and regeneration projects, Simon shared his invaluable insights into the future of the Lancashire region. He provided a comprehensive overview of the region’s development landscape and discussed the pressing issues facing Lancashire today.

Simon feels there are still a lot of positive developments happening in the region, for example the Business board is being formed for Lancashire. This will be comprised of around 17 people coming together from across the county who will represent different sectors.

As Director of Growth and Regeneration at Lancashire County Council, despite only having held the role for the past 18 months, Simon has been instrumental in driving impactful change and fostering growth across the county.

Simon was part of the group of people who put together a devolution deal for Lancashire and his leadership roles in various projects and initiatives shows his expertise in navigating the challenges of growth and regeneration.

He explained how prior to the devolution deal, counties weren’t speaking and communicating effectively enough with each other, but now they are working a lot more closely. He pointed out that although the general election has slowed this collaboration down, it has not knocked them off track.

Simon underscored the importance for the incoming government of developing an economic strategy and setting a vision of how we want the economy to look like in the next 12 months.

Simon’s insights extended beyond his professional experience, touching on the importance of collaboration and communication in driving successful regeneration projects. He emphasised the need for a coordinated approach to maximise the impact of development initiatives.

He explained that despite funding currently being on hold until the general election takes place, there are many funding opportunities within the county such as the Eden project in Morcombe and the new Cotton Parkway train station in Preston.

He believes that there is a lot of potential for Marketing Lancashire and that we could do better with this as a region.

Simon will be taking part in ‘Convention of the North 2025’, to be held in Lancashire in February next year at UCLAN in Preston.

Downtown Lancashire’s Chief Executive Frank McKenna spoke on the importance of events like these in driving dialogue and shaping the future of the region.

“I think Simon’s passion for driving positive change and his commitment to Lancashire certainly left a lasting impression on us all and we’re extremely grateful to him for joining us to share his vision for the future. Events like these are so important when it comes to showcasing the importance of collaboration and how together we can really start to make a difference and hopefully pave the way for a successful future for Lancashire.”

For more information about upcoming Downtown Lancashire events, please contact Alice Evans at

Downtown in Business