News - 11 August 2023

D2N2 LEP CEO Will Morlidge broadcasts live on BBC Radio Derby

Will Morlidge, our CEO, was live on BBC Radio Derby this lunchtime, talking with Ian Skye on the importance of mental health support in the workplace.

Will is a strong advocate for mental health support in the workplace, having been open about his own experiences of mental ill health during his career. Will recently spoke at the ‘Voices for Change’ event at the Museum of Making, hosted by the University of Derby, to advocate for businesses to provide support for mental health, such as identifying and training up mental health first aiders – there are five in D2N2 LEP – and ensuring that employers take care of their most important asset: their people.

Will said “You can’t burn the candle at both ends. You’ve got to be kind to yourself. Investing in mental health support in the workplace is not only good for your people but it also makes good economic sense – it’s good for your business too.”

He followed on by saying there was a lot of good advice out there, such as at the Work Health Club, a kind of ‘GP service for businesses’ led by the University of Derby, noting it was much easier now to talk about mental health now than it has been in the past.

There was also an opportunity to hear Will’s thoughts on the economy and the opportunities ahead for Derby and the wider region. Will said he warmly welcomes the opportunities that upcoming devolution will bring. He particularly welcomes the intent for our region to elect a mayor, who will be a unique regional figurehead, with a strong voice and remit to sit at the top table with the Government, negotiating deals for our region. As we transition away from carbon, Will strongly believes that Derby and the wider region is in a great position to build on its impressive manufacturing heritage to become the home of the next green industrial revolution.

The live conversation also dipped into Will’s taste in music, his love of history and Dr Who, and the trials and tribulations of following a football club that’s been through tough times – having grown up in Bolton, Lancashire, Will is a lifelong Bolton Wanderers fan.

Will said “I’m delighted to have been invited to chat to Ian. I know that the BBC is as keen as D2N2 LEP to support its staff when they face difficult health challenges, and I hope that, between us, Ian and I were also able to bring out the lighter side of life too”.

For media enquiries contact:

Nicola Swaney, Head of External Affairs, D2N2 LEP

nicola.swaney@d2n2.lep.org

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