9th March 2017, 5:11pm
Local Growth Minister tours Lincoln science facilities as new funding confirmed
Andrew Percy MP tours Lincolns science facilities Communities and Local Growth Minister Andrew Percy MP visited the University of Lincoln today to tour science facilities and confirm a multi-million pound cash boost for growth in Greater Lincolnshire.

His visit coincided with the announcement today (Thursday 9th March 2017) by the Communities Secretary Sajid Javid of almost £30 million to help Greater Lincolnshire create jobs, support businesses and encourage growth in the third round of Local Growth Funding (also known as Growth Deals).

As part of this latest round of funding, the University of Lincoln has been awarded £5million towards a new Centre for Health Science at the Brayford Pool Campus and £1.95million to support an Advanced Engineering Research and Development Centre at the Lincoln Science and Innovation Park.

Mr Percy toured the newly completed Boole Technology Centre at the Lincoln Science and Innovation Park, which has received support in a previous round of the Growth Deal. He also visited the neighbouring Joseph Banks Laboratories where he met with University health researchers and discussed the institution’s aspirations to develop new health and science facilities.

The Minister toured the science park with Herman Kok and Ruth Carver from the Greater Lincolnshire LEP (Local Enterprise Partnership) and Professor Andrew Hunter, Deputy Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation at the University of Lincoln.

Professor Hunter said: “We were delighted to welcome Andrew Percy MP to the Lincoln Science and Innovation Park to demonstrate how Growth Deal funding through the Greater Lincolnshire LEP is driving strategic investment here in the industrial heart of Lincoln.
“The science park, a joint venture between the University and Lincolnshire Co-op, has been developed in close collaboration with industry to meet specific needs for skills, R&D capacity and commercial space, delivering strong, sustainable economic growth.

“More than 1,000 science students study in our Joseph Banks Laboratories, where research teams are pursuing world-class research in a variety of fields, from new drug development to the molecular basis of disease. The new Boole Technology Centre now provides space for innovative, high-tech companies to co-locate and grow and has just welcomed its first tenants.

“The latest round of Growth Deal funding will underpin further investments in science and engineering, supporting plans for a new advanced engineering centre for collaborative research with commercial partners such as Siemens and for a new health science centre, which by providing a cutting-edge new home for our Lincoln Institute for Health marks an important step towards our ambition of one day establishing a medical school for Lincolnshire.”

The planned centre for health science on the University of Lincoln campus will drive growth, productivity, higher level skills and innovation throughout the health and care sector.

Professor Mary Stuart, Vice Chancellor of the University of Lincoln, said: “We are delighted to have been awarded Growth Deal funding towards a new Greater Lincolnshire Centre for Health Science.
“Working with partners across the local NHS and wider health community, this investment will help us to develop a centre that will address some of the many challenges and opportunities facing health and medicine in our region, from supplying workforce skills to developing new medical innovations.

“We will now seek the additional funding required to make this centre a reality. As well as providing a new home for researchers from our Lincoln Institute for Health, the centre will house state-of-the-art clinical spaces for teaching and professional development across a range of health professions.

“The creation of the Centre for Health Science will be a significant step towards the long-term aspiration of establishing a medical school for Lincolnshire, supporting our ambitions to secure for the county some of the additional medical school places announced by the Government in October last year.”

This latest award of Local Growth Funding is in addition to £126.06 million of growth-related money already awarded to the Greater Lincolnshire LEP since July 2014. As well as investments at the University, it will provide support for the establishment of three Food Enterprise Zones in Holbeach, Hemswell Cliff and Grimsby and a Skills Capital Programme across Greater Lincolnshire, among other projects which aim to improve educational attainment, create jobs, build homes or improve infrastructure.

Local Growth Minister Andrew Percy MP said: “This latest £29.45 million funding will make a real difference to people in Greater Lincolnshire. As well as creating new jobs and supporting businesses, we’re investing in the next generation with a new skills programme to improve access to further education. It will give young people the tools they need to reach their potential. It is further proof that we will back the people of Greater Lincolnshire with resources to get the region firing on all cylinders, now and in years to come.”
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