Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg visited Norwich Research Park yesterday as part of an announcement of a 'City Deal' which is expected to create 3,000 jobs at the park. During his visit Mr Clegg saw the results of BBSRC investment in research, innovation and infrastructure.
Mr Clegg was given a tour of the park, which is home to BBSRC strategically-funded institutes, the Institute of Food Research (IFR), The John Innes Centre (JIC) and The Genome Analysis Centre (TGAC), and met BBSRC's Executive Director, Innovation and Skills, Dr Celia Caulcott.
The tour included a visit to the construction site of the Centrum Building which will be a new innovation hub for NRP, a meeting with JIC spin-out company Procarta and a demonstration of advanced genome sequencing machines at TGAC. Each of these has received significant BBSRC investment.
As well as supporting the institutes to conduct world-class bioscience, BBSRC is in the process of investing £26M into the park to build two new buildings and improve infrastructure, which will be a catalyst for economic growth.
The Norwich City Deal is an investment strategy which it is hoped will bring 39,000 jobs to the Norwich area by 2026, including 3,000 'high value' jobs at the research park.
The plan has targeted securing an additional £100M of private investment in Norwich's high-tech expertise.
Mr Clegg said: "It's great news for Norwich because just look at its laboratories and look at its hub for science innovation. What we want to do with the City Deal is give support to the businesses that are being spun out from these laboratories."
Norwich Research Park is one of six UK research and innovation campuses that make a key contribution to the UK innovation ecosystem, enabling economic growth, assuring national security, contributing to interactions with important international trading partners and supporting key economic sectors.
For more information on UK research and innovation campuses, visit: www.bbsrc.ac.uk/organisation/research-innovation-campuses