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£35m backing to create 2,700 new West Midlands jobs

Government confirms new cash injection to help 'Whitney South' development get started and support automotive supply chain the region

Aerial view of JLR's head office and the new Whitley South project

More than 2,500 new manufacturing jobs are to be created in the West Midlands after the Government announced it would be injecting £35 million to support development of a new industrial hub.

The 60-acre 'Whitley South' infrastructure project will be home to highly skilled engineering and advanced manufacturing jobs and open up new growth opportunities for local manufacturers and businesses in the automotive supply chain.

It is expected businesses will be on site and hiring from 2017/18 with Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) due to occupy some of the land.

The £35 million investment, which was confirmed today, will also improve industrial transport links on the A45, including a new bridge to connect Whitley South to the existing JLR engineering centre and global HQ.

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The site near Coventry is being developed with support from Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (CWLEP), Warwick District Council and Coventry City Council, who have secured further local contributions of £10 million to secure the project.

Business and Energy Secretary Greg Clark said: "Our world-class auto sector is leading the way and this new development will create thousands more skilled jobs.

"It shows how private and public sector can work together to make a difference to the economy.

"That's why every member of my ministerial team has been appointed as a local growth champion, to work with local enterprise partnerships like CWLEP to support key opportunities and increase prosperity."

To coincide with the funding announcement, CWLEP has also confirmed it will publish its refreshed 'Strategic Economic Plan', which includes unlocking growth potential and advanced manufacturing and engineering as its core priorities.

Business minister Margot James added: "The resurgence of advanced manufacturing and the automotive industry in the West Midlands is a real success story.

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"It's vital we maintain this momentum and keep creating high-skilled jobs and don't let any opportunity slip through our fingers.

"This £35 million investment unlocks land that will help to cement the region as a leading destination for investment."

Work on development at the site is due to start within the next few months with final employment numbers there expected to be around 2,700.

Jonathan Browning, chairman of the Coventry and Warwickshire LEP, said: "This is very good news for Coventry and Warwickshire and allows us to further build on the success that has been achieved by our advanced manufacturing sector.

"The CWLEP and its partners have worked hard over several years to help ensure the sector can fulfil its potential - including improvements in infrastructure, skills and the supply chain.

"That work and our overall vision which is set out in the updated Strategic Economic Plan has been well supported by central government, our local authorities and the private sector who all understand our vision for the economy of Coventry and Warwickshire."

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