The Crawley Economic Recovery Taskforce have published a plan – all the details are here: Crawley Economic Recovery Task Force and Town Deal Board | Crawley GOV

But what are we actually going to do? Firstly, your Labour led Council are bringing all sectors of our Town-wide Crawley community together, including the Manor Royal and Town centre BID’s, the Professional services forum, the Historic High street, the neighbourhood parades and other business and social organisations to make sure that every business has a chance to contribute to the economic recovery and to play their part in recovering our economy across the Town. This is the first time that this has been done and we think that by working co-operatively across all sectors we will generate more opportunities and jobs.

There are five key priority areas:

Diversification – making sure that we have a wide range of businesses with less dependency on the airport where possible

Green new deal – building forward better by encouraging business in renewable energy, sustainable transport, environmental improvement and other areas

Town Centre renewal – we have already begun the diversification of the Town centre by increasing residential buildings, for example, but we need to do more to ensure that the Town Centre maintains a good range of retail shops where possible, but also to encourage other uses including restaurants, social uses and small businesses.

Skills for Crawley people – working with the Crawley College to develop a wider range of training and re-training courses including Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). And working with Crawley businesses to ensure that the range of skills provided meet their needs.

Digital connectivity – more and more businesses and jobs are depending on high-speed digital connectivity. We all need higher capacity on our home internet connections especially as more people are working at home. And more people may work in smaller business premises such as tech start-up spaces. Labour have ensured that all neighbourhoods in Crawley will have access to Gigabit fibre broadband as well as the Town Centre and Manor Royal.

These are our key themes. In many cases specific projects are already underway. In others we have detailed plans and in others we are working to bring people and organisations together to make them happen.

We would like to hear your ideas. You can email: peter.smith@crawleylabour.org.uk with your suggestions and ideas, and help us improve our Crawley recovery plan further.

Only Crawley Labour has the vision, the ambition and the drive to bring all of this together, building on the work that we have done over the last seven years, to create skilled jobs for Crawley people and help us through the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic together.

Cllr Peter Smith

Ifield and Ifield West

Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development

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