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Item 4: Notes of meeting held on 26 January 2015 Meeting held at the Stadium of Light
01/15 Present Gary Hutchinson (Chair) Stuart Smiles Kevin Rooney Lynne Oliver Daniel O’Mahoney Chris Lakin Gemma Gadomski John Devitt Paul Elliott John Craggs Richard Sice Lee Carlin Sue Hewison Paul Harrison Hirohito Imakoji Andy Trafford Mike Smith Richard Morgan Lauren Saul Gavin Winter
Sunderland AFC Alex Smiles Baker Tilly Bizspace Bradley O’Mahoney PR BWC UK Counted4 Commercial Counted4 Commercial Ettrick Health & Safety Gentoo Going Global Skills Grundfos Handelsbanken Interserve Construction Liebherr MacDonald Martin Mike Smith Management Services Nigel Wright Recruitment North East BIC Watson Burton
Ernie Johnson Kevin Clark David Roberts Louise Morritt Michael Dixon Sally Pearson Kevin Leonard Debbie Bowman Gemma Dishman Dave Smith Catherine Auld Stephanie Rose Iain Nixon Jane Thompson John Green Jeni Banks David Donkin Hendrix Odigie Thorben Haenel
North East Vending NorthEast Press Northern Risk Solutions One Awards Premier Tennis League Press Ahead Rentokil Specialist Hygiene Sun FM Sunderland BID Sunderland City Council Sunderland City Council Sunderland City Council Sunderland College Sunderland College The Bridges TTR Barnes University of Sunderland WAMOT WAMOT
Andrew Heavisides Arthur Hodgson
Ashmore Consulting Durham Community Foundation Donnelly McArdle Adamson Gentoo Handelsbanken Liebherr NECC NECC New Results Training North Pennines AONB NorthEast Press
Joy Yates Lorraine Ellison Mick Thurlbeck Sue Stott Julian Carter Ken Dunbar Paul Lund Andy Bradley David Cook Shirley Atkinson
NorthEast Press Simply Additions Sixcor SMS Business Support Sun FM Sunderland BID TDR The Bridges TTR Barnes University of Sunderland
In Attendance Mark Stephenson Julie Digman
02/15 Apologies Allison Thompson Jane Robson Lyn Rowe John Walker Paul Sinclair Ralph Saelzer Andrew Heavisides Eamonn Leavey Nicola Tynemouth Helen Hambleton Stephen Plews
03/15 Welcome Gary Hutchinson extended a warm welcome to members.
04/15 Work Discovery Week Presentation The Chair invited students from Monkwearmouth Academy to give a presentation on their vision for Sunderland in 2050. The students presented a video and the following ideas were highlighted: Hover shopping, solar powered LED road lighting, click & go technology, solar powered buildings, up dated schools (using new technology). NECC Sunderland Area Meeting: Tuesday 19 May 2015
In reply to member’s questions the students advised:
The biggest change foreseen would be up dated schools (robotics a possibility) Although the future will be electronic some people may still prefer books.
The Chair thanked the students and congratulated them on being runners up in the problem solving challenge set during work discovery week.
05/15 Notes of the Previous Meeting The notes of the meeting held on 21 October 2014 were agreed as a correct record. All matters arising covered in the agenda of the meeting.
06/15 NECC Update Chair’s Remarks
Economy – positive, seeing signs of recovery (faster in some sectors then others). o Dave Smith will elaborate on the Growth Hub being established in the heart of Sunderland o Investment in the city centre. Siglion, the joint venture company (Carillion & Igloo) leading the transformation o New bridge confirmed, two hotels opening, investment from the university and college, Advanced Manufacturing Park o Cultural sector engaging - Sunderland Music, Arts & Cultural Quarter (MACQ) o Hitachi in Newton Aycliffe (university involved) o Economic Masterplan 2010 is due for a refresh Work Discovery (backed by the private sector) delivering enterprise and employability skills (21 secondary schools involved). Credit to Stephanie Rose at Sunderland City Council for driving this forward (unique to the region). Members were encouraged to get involved, small businesses as well as large. Contact [email protected] Vibrancy agenda, picked up by eight agencies (Gentoo, SAFC, Sunderland BID, Sunderland College, Sunderland City Council, Sunderland Live, The Bridges, University of Sunderland) pooling resources/funding/ideas to drive footfall which will benefit the city and accentuating the positive stories SAFC – Focus on climbing table and Ladies team won promotion to WSL1 Events – collaboration starting o Concerts at Stadium of Light, successful 2014, Foo Fighters in 2015 and further announcements shortly o Credit to Sunderland Empire attracting West End Shows (Lion King). Work at how to disperse footfall into the city centre o African Festival, a new event. Having a debrief following the Christmas event programme o Won Tall Ships Race for 2018 Still challenges – late night shopping
John Craggs, Gentoo, advised that the housing market quite strong but volatile. Demand for rented property and sales but still a shortage of confidence. A nation of renters being created (difficulty in finding deposits to buy coupled with student debt). High on the election agenda. Product called Genie developed in partnership with the Greater London Authority (investment from them to support Genie). Significant job creation.
NECC Sunderland Area Meeting: Tuesday 19 May 2015
First meeting since JC has taken on the role of Chair of the Sunderland BID. Met with KD to discuss how to harness spending in the city. Collaboration important to make the most of what Sunderland has.
Manifesto & Policy Report Mark Stephenson introduced the January Manifesto and Policy Report (circulated with the agenda) the bulk of which was taken as read.
MS made reference to the NECC Manifesto 2015 (circulated with the agenda) which had been launched on NECC’s 200th Anniversary on 5 January at the Guild Hall in Newcastle. The manifesto is the main lobbying document which sets NECC’s campaigning activity for the year and also makes a clear statement about the region’s business priorities. It is therefore important for members to engage. GH added that he represented Sunderland members on all groups and that he could challenge on a multitude of issues on members’ behalf. Budget Submission – NECC would be writing to Chancellor George Osborne ahead of his Budget on March 18, the final budget before the General Election, calling for Government to recognise the North East’s role as an asset and to support the region to deliver further growth. Air Passenger Duty (APD) would be one of the major issues raised. Contact [email protected]
Area Report Mark Stephenson introduced the Area Report (circulated with the agenda) which provided an update on NECC activity in Tyne & Wear and asked that the report be taken as read.
Sunderland City Council Budget - 3rd February 2015 As part of the annual consultation process for Sunderland City Council’s budget, members were invited to a meeting with the council’s political and executive leadership in order to set out the business community’s priorities for the coming year. Contact [email protected]
07/15 Sunderland City Council The Chair invited Dave Smith, Chief Executive, Sunderland City Council, to give an update on the challenges facing the Council in light of further budget cuts, as well as the on going investment in the city centre and the advanced manufacturing park.
Regeneration - Creating conditions to attract investment, “a prosperous and well connected waterfront city centre” o Vaux site – Central Business District (city centre is currently under resourced in terms of top end office accommodation) Realignment of St Mary’s Way complete Siglion – Partnership between Carillion & Igloo formed to lead development (Chief Executive appointed). There will be opportunities for new and existing businesses o Minster Quarter Exploring retail-led redevelopment proposals for Crowtree site. NECC Sunderland Area Meeting: Tuesday 19 May 2015
Sunderland Music, Arts & Cultural Quarter (MACQ): on-going project development by Sunderland Music, Arts & Culture Trust. HLF Stage one approval. o Investment Corridor – investing in public realm improvements (£4m programme) East – West axis enhancing pedestrian connectivity between University campuses and city centre: High St West, West St, St Michael’s Way. engagement with Traders Association & University Holmeside –Sunderland College has collaborated with the Council (£29m investment in Sunderland College City Campus). Area important in bringing footfall into the city o Station – working with Nexus and Network Rail (not Council led). £8m investment to improve the area, give a different look to the gateway. o Seafront – in partnership with commercial investors Positive coverage (Christmas lighting extended) o IAMP (Advanced Manufacturing Park on land west of Nissan) – part of City Deal. A huge challenge, some of the land on Green Belt and a lot of work to undertake. If successful it will create thousands of jobs, o Housing - work is on-going on the 2014/15 Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment (SHLAA), currently this is indicating a housing land supply of around 16,000 dwellings for the next 15 years Automotive and Software Sectors o Software – growing significantly and attracting international interest. Real opportunity and the Council will continue to build on demand and work with partners o Automotive - a cluster of 25 'tier one' automotive suppliers. Challenges and Opportunities: Emerging Technologies Development of offshore wind Affordable / deliverable sites Inward Investment – the most successful part of the region in a challenging environment. Needs to be sustained Economic Masterplan – produced in 2010 to be refreshed North East Combined Authority – formed in April 2014 to be a strong voice for the North East to achieve investment for the region. Functions include: o Transport functions of the Durham and Northumberland Constituent Authorities o Those economic development and regenerations functions which are to be exercised concurrently with the Constituent Authorities
During questions and discussion the following points were raised:
Regarding a question on the change of use of sites (reference to housing on Leechmere Industrial Estate), DS made reference to planning limitations and the planning process. He offered to have a conversation with the member following the meeting Software City – a member suggested it was difficult for a lay person to access the facilities. DS advised that Catherine Auld would investigate. A member made reference to the on going effects of austerity measures. DS advised that the Council needed to save another £35million in 2015/2016 and the budget would be reduced by £150m by 2020 if no change. He concurred that the cuts were severe but the Council had aimed to protect services and facilitate economic development.
08/15 State of Trade Members were invited to give a brief update on current trading conditions and business issues: NECC Sunderland Area Meeting: Tuesday 19 May 2015
Retail o Launched late night shopping on a Thursday night and pleased with the early results o New owners of the Bridges keen to discuss the Crow Tree site o Footfall increased up to Christmas (40% up). High value did well International Trade – helping businesses from the UK promote and sell their branded products in Zhengzhou China. An exhibition centre where UK firms can showcase their products and services, store products in the bonded building and have payment in hard currency guaranteed had been established and two of the companies involved in the first visit to China are hoping to achieve big orders. A second outbound mission is scheduled around a meet the Buyer event in May and there is availability for companies to be represented. An inbound mission bringing Chinese businesses to the UK is planned for June 2015. University – Nationally, graduate prospects looking better, hopeful this will play out in Sunderland. DD thanked businesses for their help in placing 70 unemployed graduates. Have a good relationship with SAFC and a number of students placed at the club. Vending – re-launched website with help from Sunderland University. The response and the quality of the work was superb Public Relations - Oil prices highlighted as an issue. Whilst lower fuel costs are attractive there is a need to be mindful of the impact on employees in the offshore sector. Met with NOF Energy last week. Confidence level in the sector is still high. Manufacturing – manufacture of offshore cranes affected by the oil price (reflected in sales figures). Manufacturing capacity has been shifted to Sunderland (mobile cranes). Apprenticeship scheme going well. Specialist substance misuse and mental health testing support and treatment - New NECC member trying to share expertise across the region. Working with the university and social workers to try and change working practices (public and private) NECC – Using the Quarterly Economic Survey as a guide, conditions are looking good. More people are employed in the private sector than ever before and there is a lot of positivity.
09/15 Future Meetings To continue to start at 4.00 pm at the Stadium of Light on the following dates: 28 April 14 July 20 October The Chair thanked members from a wide cross section of sectors for their attendance and contributions and encouraged them to engage with NECC through the Chair, vice-chair and NECC staff.