Health and Wealth don’t just rhyme. A healthy economy is necessary for wellbeing. So it should be no surprise that Councils are being encouraged to make the most of their industrial assets.
Leicestershire County Council owns a range of industrial properties in Coalville. The Springboard Centre next to Memorial Square is the most visible. Workspace 17 is hidden away on Highfield Street. There is also the Hermitage Industrial Estate including Vulcan and Comet Way.
Leicestershire County Council has a “Strategy for Industrial Development in Coalville”. They intend to re-develop sites at Vulcan Way and Samson Road using money from a Regional Growth Fund. I am being told the new development will provide an additional 60,000 sq ft of new workspace, with opportunities for 92 businesses and 275 jobs. All sounds very nice, doesn't it?
The trouble is, the LCC land is still occupied by a local transport company and has been for the last ten years. I am told there are 68 established jobs being put at risk by this plan.
The Highland Clearances, two centuries ago, allowed Landlords to evict tenants on short-hold leases. The owners, often living far away, wanted to make more profit from the land. As a Landlord, LCC are assessing their properties and looking at ways they can increase the rental income.
When asked at December Full Council how many established jobs were being threatened by the Council’s industrial strategy, Tory Cllr Blake Pain (Market Harborough) appeared oblivious to the risk to businesses in Coalville. He has, however, promised to meet with me this January.
I will keep you posted.