Amended to link to the The Society's critique of the Strategy.
Guildford Bororough council are finalising a Economic Development Strategy for Guildford that will be agreed with the full council.
The main ambition of the Strategy is:
“We will re-establish Guildford as the beating heart of Surrey’s economy. We will be widely known for our modern, innovative, progressive, productive, inclusive and green economy, characterised by unique clusters of high growth knowledge- and production-based economic activity.
Attracted by our world-class university, ground-breaking hospital, regenerated town centre, intensified employment areas and unrivalled heritage, cultural and natural assets, we will become the number one place in the South East for workers, entrepreneurs and businesses to locate.
Enterprises that choose Guildford, or have roots here, will receive first-class support from our pro-business partners to help them start-up, scale and grow, and, most importantly, clear and obvious connections will be created with our residents to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to benefit from economic success”.
Guildford Borough Council (GBC) will play the role of ‘lead custodian’ for our local economy, but emphasises that no one body can deliver economic growth on its own so the responsibility for these is shared across our organisations. GBC recognise that this includes Waverley Borough Council (WBC) given the new partnership. Note the report is Guildford Centric and it is not clear that the statistics etc have been revised to include Waverly.
The Guildford Economy has not doing well compared to a variety of town around London, and on a range of economic comparisons the borough is ranking well below the average for England. A summary Comparison Chart from the report can be viewed below.
Issues identified include:
The Report proposes a series of actions to support the local economy including more provision of high-quality office space, focusing on certain sectors etc. The proposed Economic Strategy will be fed into the Shaping Guildford Future plans. The Society has yet to review the recommendations in detail but will post a response shortly.
The Society has sent a critique of the proposals in the draft document to the councillors concerned with Regenertion and the local Economy See below.
The Evidence Base, Report and Action Plan are attached below.
Help us make Guildford better
We want our town to be vibrant, attractive and liveable. We support development that brings a sense of place and enhances the best aspects of our town. If such aims can be embraced, we believe Guildford has the chance to lead the way in enabling sensitive and sustainable development.
Pressures for development are increasing. Planning rules are being eased. The Society’s commitment to standing up for Guildford is needed more than ever.
Getting involved allows the society to continue its work. We welcome new members, from every age and background. Membership provides an opportunity for you to contribute to the continued health of the town and surrounding area, and to meet other people who care about Guildford.