Most people will have noticed the extraordinary amount of development and redevelopment that is taking place in Manor Royal Business District. For example Elekta investing in their Cornerstone building on London road, Surrey County Council have a prestigious new building on Gatwick road and permission has been granted for a grade A headquarters office building for a flight simulator company next door. Work has started on a second data centre on the former Glaxo site and Harwoods have a big new showroom on Manor Royal, to name but a few. There are hoardings and cranes everywhere!
We also see that the influential Centre for Cities 2017 report shows that Crawley has the highest employment rate and third highest wages in the UK. And Crawley has led the way in West Sussex by signing the first Growth Deal with the County Council.
Crawley Borough Council is also investing in Manor Royal and has started work on infrastructure improvements near the Crawters Brook Peoples park and similarly is supporting the new pocket park on Manor Royal, amongst other schemes. We are also protecting the Business District from the ‘scourge of permitted development’ by preventing the conversion of offices to residential without planning permission in Manor Royal.
Going forward we are working with partners including the C2C Local Enterprise Partnership and WSCC to invest in improvements to sustainable transport and infrastructure in Manor Royal to help alleviate the problems experienced by workers and businesses with congestion, parking and air pollution.
Our next big challenge is to make progress with our Skills and Employment programme where we will work with employers and training providers in Crawley to try to ensure that Crawley people get the best chance to fill the increasing number of hi-tech and high skilled jobs available in Crawley.
Your Labour led council has pro-actively worked to deliver the political vision, ambition and delivery to support all of this. Indeed many are saying that we are the most pro-business Council for many years. I would say that we are pro-business, pro-Crawley and, most importantly, pro-Crawley Residents. Only Labour speaks for the whole of Crawley and puts Crawley first.
Cllr Peter Smith
Labour Ifield and Ifield West