A masterplan to map out and ensure the success of Bury’s economy is being drawn up by the council and borough business leaders.

They are preparing an "economic development strategy", setting out shared ambitions and a vision for Bury’s future which will both safeguard and speed up the borough’s prosperity.

Bury’s aim is to stand out as a place that is achieving faster economic growth than the national average, with lower than national levels of deprivation.

The strategy places a thriving, inclusive economy at the heart of the borough and includes three interlinked ambitions:

• Bury’s Places: to create an inclusive, sustainable and prosperous place, where people choose to live, work, invest and visit.

• Bury’s People: to build the capabilities of people to find, sustain and progress in employment and achieve economic security.

• Bury’s economy and businesses base: to create the conditions for business to prosper and accelerate the transition to a fairer, greener and more resilient economy.

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Cllr Charlotte Morris, cabinet member for culture, the economy and skills at the council, said: “Our new economic strategy sets out a clear ‘Team Bury’ approach to delivering a more sustainable, competitive, inclusive, and resilient local economy which fulfils its potential.

“Like many areas across the UK, we have had to deal with the variety of economic challenges- from the impacts of Covid and Brexit to the cost of living crisis, high inflation and instability in Europe.

“Through this strategy, we aim to ensure the borough has a strong economy in the future and offers a range of job and career opportunities for all.

“The council cannot achieve this on its own. This is a system wide approach to make Bury resilient to economic shocks and able to grow in a planned and sustainable way.

"It will require a collective effort from all parts of the public sector, the voluntary, community and faith sector, local businesses and entrepreneurs and communities to achieve the results that everyone will benefit from.”

Cllr Morris said it was vital to create the conditions in which all level of businesses – from start-ups and small and midsize enterprises to world leading brands and companies – could provide long-term, higher-skilled, and well-paid employment.

She added: “We must ensure that we have enough employment land in the right locations to enable existing businesses to grow, while also attracting new businesses, particularly those in growth sectors such as advanced manufacturing, digital services and technologies, to locate here.

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“The Northern Gateway site, part of the Atom Valley Mayoral Development Zone (MDZ), offers a game-changing opportunity to expand the borough’s business base for the benefit of Bury and the wider region.”

Cllr Morris it was also vital that there were changes to the skills system.

She added: “We need to prepare young people better for careers in key growth sectors and to support existing companies with issues which are constraining the labour force, such as health and wellbeing, and an ageing workforce.

“We need to take advantage of the Greater Manchester Trailblazer Devolution deal to develop a system which is much more responsive to business needs.

"We also need to make sure that the skills system adjusts to the profound changes to our economic system being driven by a rapid move to a digital and zero-carbon economy."

Creating "vibrant town centres" and boost the transport network in Bury are priorities for the council too.

Cllr Morris said: “We will make a range of investments to modernise and future proof our key centres.

"Critical to this will be the borough’s housing strategy and ensuring this drives the delivery of high-quality, well-connected new communities, designed with green space, local amenity, community facilities and good connectivity at their heart.

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“Our transport Strategy for the borough guides investment into the strategic highway network, as well as promoting better bus services and cycling options.

"We will work with the Department of Transport and Transport for Greater Manchester to ensure major highways schemes are implemented that will open-up the Northern Gateway opportunity site, as well as bring forward a new transport Interchange for Bury town centre.”