Northern Powerhouse Director, Henri Murison, met with business leaders from across Lancashire on Wednesday morning to discuss Devolution and its effect on business. The event, located at Recycling Lives Centre in Preston and hosted by Downtown’s Chris Mckenna, summarised an exciting series of events in Lancashire over the first quarter creating debate and discussion around the big devo question.
Henri was confident that business leadership would encourage government interest, yet highlighted that the stalling political interests deter the deal further. While the timescale is difficult to predict, there is no case to suggest the devo deal would have a negative impact on Lancashire but the burning question is what is right for Lancashire now.
Kristen Durose from Red Star Wealth commented; ‘Devolution would be good for Lancashire as a whole but it’s difficult for local councils to not see past their boundary and next door neighbours.’
Commenting on skills in Lancashire, Henri said; ‘The skills agenda in Lancashire is very important as the discussion at last weeks event showed. Business and commerce want to invest locally in talent and industries should aspire to make apprenticeships part of the norm – not an additional extra.’
Anthony Camm, Head of Business Support for Downtown Lancashire added; “We have met with the private sector over the last few months and it’s been exciting to hear the different points of view. Different counties seem interested in their own patch whilst some are interested in the wider challenge of devolution. We have heard fiscal explanations, mayoral pitches and what’s right for now examples from across the political spectrum. It will be interesting to see how the private sector reacts over the coming months and years.”
For information on the next Downtown event near you, click here.