Life sciences research can have hugely positive impacts on people’s lives. Breakthroughs that produce life-saving medications, new treatments, or technological advances to improve quality of life are all made in this field of science. Here in Leicestershire, we’re leading the way in life sciences at Charnwood Campus, the UK’s first Life Sciences Opportunity Zone (LSOZ).
Central Government has recently announced that it is expanding the number of LSOZs across the country by calling for more UK life science locations to apply for the status. The call, part of the second Life Sciences Sector Deal, will support healthcare innovation, attract businesses to create high-paid, high-quality jobs and help raise the UKs profile on an international level in this key sector.
LLEP Chair Kevin Harris said: “I’m extremely proud that Charnwood Campus is leading the way in Life Sciences research. Since its designation as a Life Sciences Opportunity Zone in 2016, Leicestershire has been a focal point for this field of research in the Midlands.
The news that central government is renewing the call for other regions to apply for LSOZ status is fantastic. It can only lead to more collaboration, more sharing of expertise and more breakthroughs that have the potential to save lives.
We welcome the chance to expand Life Sciences research through more LSOZs, and feel that Charnwood Campus, as the UK’s first LSOZ, is an ideal model on which to base new zones in the future.”
This second deal for life sciences deepens the partnerships between Government, industry, universities and charities to capitalise on the enormous opportunities for growth in this sector. These partnerships are characterised by our LSOZ, and businesses based at Charnwood Campus, supported by the Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership (LLEP) and local universities, are already taking advantage of being within an environment which inspires discovery, encourages collaboration and accelerates business growth.
The deal is backed by £79m in government funding, and a huge £1bn investment from global pharmaceutical company UCB, for research and development. It shows a huge confidence in British business and scientific expertise, and is a ringing endorsement of the LSOZ strategy and trail-blazing work of Charnwood Campus.
Gosia Khrais, Commercial and Marketing Director of Charnwood Campus said: “It is a great privilege to be named in the government’s Life Science Sector Deal. Once again not only ourselves, but also the sector we are driving, is in the spotlight. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the partners, and particularly all the companies based on site, for their hard work and involvement in the development of our LSOZ, and I would strongly encourage others to apply so we can create a network of key sites across the UK.”
James Hurst, Site Head, Almac Group, based on the Life Science Opportunity Zone, said: “Almac continues to experience the benefits of being located within the surrounding community and, by being an integral part of the LSOZ, delighted to be playing our part in leading the way in life sciences research from our Charnwood site. The opportunities to collaborate, share knowledge and attract talent as a member of the LSOZ enables companies, of any size, to grow and remain competitive on a global stage.”
To find out more about the pioneering work taking place at Charnwood Campus Life Sciences Opportunity Zone, head to our website at: www.llep.org.uk/enterprise-zones. Here you will find information not only on the UK’s first LSOZ, but on the other Enterprise Zones in Leicester and Leicestershire.