A week of activity focused on helping businesses in the region recover from the devastating impact of the coronavirus lockdown is to be staged by The Marches Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP).
The LEP – the business-led body responsible for driving economic growth across Herefordshire, Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin – says next month’s Business Recovery Week will focus on action needed to rebuild the regional economy as it begins to emerge from the shadow of the virus.
The Marches Business Recovery Week will run from October 12 -16 and examine in detail how the business community can be helped to thrive in the new post-Covid world.
Marches LEP chair Mandy Thorn said the week would include the launch of a new digital strategy for the region, an extensive focus on skills and training and a major Economic Recovery Summit bringing together all the region’s business groups and partners to map the road ahead for the region.
The week would also see the launch of the LEP’s own annual report highlighting the huge programme of work it has undertaken across all the region’s communities in the last 12 months and the new projects and investments planned for the coming year.
“This week is about far more than just how this region and its wonderful businesses recover from Covid,” Mrs Thorn said.
“It is about how we rebuild our business community for the future to ensure it can take full advantage of the changes the past six months has brought. We know that business will never return to the way it was at the start of this year and we want to do everything in our power to bring people and groups together to plan for life in the new world.
“That is why the launch of our digital strategy is so important. We need to ensure we have the technological infrastructure in place which supports these changes to our working habits and allows all our companies to thrive in the new digital environment.
“We will also place a huge emphasis on skills so that everyone has the resources they need to make the most of their potential and we do not see any part of our society left behind in this new world. By ensuring our skills provision is aligned to the needs of business we can help deliver the sorts of high-value jobs which will help drive our economy into the future.
“Our Marches Economic Recovery Summit on October 15 will bring together all the partners we work with – business boards, chambers of commerce, small business groups, farmers’ representatives, skills, training and education providers and local authorities – to chart a route which will help drive this region towards the prosperity all our communities deserve.
“By bringing together all the talents in this region in this way we can deliver a united, comprehensive plan for the future and lobby Government most effectively for the resources we need to deliver it.”
The LEP’s annual report will be launched at a virtual event on October 12 with the launch of the digital strategy to take place on October 13. Skills and training will be under the spotlight on October 14. All events will be held online with details of how to register and take part to be announced shortly.