News - 05 June 2014

Graham Allen MP to host city’s leaders for ‘rebalancing project’ conference at NCN Basford Hall

Graham Allen Peter Richardson & Lord Heseltine 

Leaders from the worlds of business, local government and the third sector will come together to commence the second stage of Graham Allen MP’s ‘rebalancing project’ tomorrow (Friday 6th June).

Mr Allen’s vision is to rebalance the economic prospects of large estates located on the edge of major cities, such as Bulwell, Aspley and Basford which lie within his Nottingham North constituency.

Speakers at the cross-party event will include Government advisor Lord Heseltine, CEO of The Big Lottery Fund Dawn Austwick, and chair of Labour’s Policy Review John Cruddas MP.

Discussion panels with the visiting speakers – who will be joined by Nottingham City Council leader Jon Collins – will be chaired by ncn Principal Dawn Whitemore, D2N2 Local Enterprise (LEP) Chair Peter Richardson, managing director of BEST Social Enterprise Anna Mimms MBE and Tony Travers of the London School of Economics.

Topics up for debate will include; ‘The Challenge of our Outer Cities’,  ‘Enabling the Community to Drive Change’ and ‘How Devolving Real Power can Change Communities’. Delegates will then break out into discussion groups focused on employment and skills, local businesses, community participation and how the new Basford Hall campus will be a catalyst for development.

By the end of the event, Mr Allen hopes to have the beginnings of a business plan for the rebalancing project, with a view to garnering further support in the city and cross-party political backing.

Graham Allen MP said: “We need to make sure every young person is ‘work ready’ and that means a work advisor in every school and a careers academy for those young people who want to go on to further or higher education. The Basford Hall revamp is central to this as is building on the fantastic work of all our partners at the conference. The ‘rebalancing Nottingham North estates’ project is an investment that will pay hundreds of dividends for the taxpayer and above all, the young people concerned.”

David Ralph, Chief Executive of D2N2, the Local Enterprise Partnership for Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire, said: “The rebalancing of the outer city estates is a good example of how the LEP is looking to ensure the benefits of growth can be felt by all, by the whole area.

“We are delighted with the progress made to date and want to push on to help real delivery on the ground. This has all-party support, which is demonstrated at Friday’s event, and is a key component in making this a success.

“We fully support the proposals being developed to tackle social problems and bring about sustainable change. 

“It has been submitted to Government as part of our Strategic Economic Plan. We will bring partners together to tackle the issues faced by these estates and demonstrate how the economic growth we are striving to achieve can benefit some of our more challenged communities.”

Dawn Whitemore said: “We are absolutely delighted to be hosting this important event at ncn Basford Hall. Our new campus, due in September 2015, will have a huge role to play in the development of Basford and beyond. Education and training is the key to giving people better life chances and we are determined that the new campus and the opportunities on offer there will have a positive impact on the whole community.”

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