Press release

Burnley named most enterprising place in Britain

Lancashire town received the accolade for commitment to small and medium sized businesses and successfully reframing perceptions of Burnley.

Burnley is celebrating after being named the most enterprising place in Britain. The Lancashire town received the accolade for its ongoing commitment to support small and medium sized businesses and for successfully reframing perceptions of Burnley.

The Burnley Bondholders scheme sets Burnley apart from the rest of Britain, an initiative that brings together over 100 local firms that work together to promote Burnley as a place for business. Through the consortium’s combined passion and hard work to promote local enterprise through media channels they have attracted £10 million to the area.

The Burnley Bondholder scheme stood out from other entries in this year’s ‘most enterprising place’ category of the Enterprising Britain Awards because it demonstrated how collaborative thinking can make a real difference to an area.

This scheme was one of 4 UK winners from a record number of 44 entries to this year’s Enterprising Britain Awards. The awards honour and celebrate the best public initiatives and public-private partnerships that are working hard to promote business development in communities across the UK.

Other UK winners in the awards were:

  • The Premier League for Promoting Enterprise
  • Hackney Council for Promoting Exports
  • Aberdeen College for School/FE College Community Enterprise

Business and Enterprise Minister Michael Fallon said:

The Burnley Bondholders scheme is reinvigorating the local economy and helping to change perceptions of Burnley. Initiatives like this are working hard to boost growth and thoroughly deserve recognition and the opportunity to represent the UK at the European Awards in November.

These awards showcase the entrepreneurial spirit that can be found in local authorities, businesses, schools and colleges across the country.

Councillor Julie Cooper, leader of Burnley Council, said:

This is fantastic news for Burnley.

We are punching above our weight and we have big ambitions. Burnley is well on its way to forging a strong international reputation as a centre of excellence for manufacturing, particularly in the aerospace industry.

This award reflects Burnley’s growing stature in showing the way to the rest of the country in promoting manufacturing in Britain and puts us on the map as a place where enterprise and innovation are thriving.

It’s great that we’re the most enterprising area in the UK but it’s only the start. It reflects what’s happening in our town but it’s nowhere near the end of the story. Work which is underway to create an innovative aerospace ‘supply village’ in the former Michelin tyre factory is just one excellent example of how an old manufacturing site that was symbolic of Britain’s industrial past is being transformed into a shining example of our country’s high-tech manufacturing future.

Burnley – Britain’s most enterprising area – absolutely right.

The Premier League won the UK category for Promoting Enterprise for its great work in using its brand to provide tailored support for enterprise in local communities across the UK.

Richard Scudamore, Chief Executive of the Premier League, said:

It is great to see our Premier League Enterprise Academy programme being recognised with this Enterprising Britain Award. Since first collaborating with the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills in 2008, we established Enterprise Academies at 20 of our clubs.

Through these Enterprise Academies we have now engaged over 80,000 11 to 19 year olds in enterprise activity; building on the interest they have in football and their local club to teach them a wide range of valuable skills.

The hands-on nature of the project means that these young people take on real-life business challenges that our clubs face, giving them the practical experience to move into the working world well-equipped to get their first job.

Other winners of this years awards include; Hackney Council’s ‘Hackney House’ initiative for Promoting Exports and Aberdeen College for School/FE College Community Enterprise. Hackney was recognised for its ambitious promotion as a place for inward investment whilst Aberdeen College successfully built enterprise into its core curriculum, embedding an entrepreneurial culture throughout the school.

The Enterprising Britain Awards 2013 is being run on behalf of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills by Young Chamber.

Young Chamber Chief Executive Kevin Smith said:

2013 was an excellent year for the Enterprising Britain Awards with a record number of impressive applications received from all over the UK. I would like to congratulate all of the very worthy winners in this year’s competition.

Small businesses account for over 59% of the total private sector workforce in the UK, and these awards serve to recognise the importance of small and medium sized businesses both in the UK and in the European Union.

Burnley and The Premier League will go on to represent the UK at the European Enterprise Promotion Awards in Vilnius, Lithuania in November.

Notes to editors

  1. For more information visit the European Enterprise Promotion Awards website and you can follow the awards on Twitter. For case studies, please see last year’s national and European winners.

  2. 44 high quality applications were received; these were scored against assessment criteria and then this was considered by a stakeholder judging panel.

  3. Initiatives that won last year’s Enterprising Britain Awards were:
    • Northamptonshire County Council, who won the Most Enterprising Area in the country category, for helping to generate economic prosperity across the county
    • Northamptonshire County Council also picked up the award for Encouraging Export, thanks to the positive work undertaken by the Local Enterprise Partnership
    • YTKO Ltd’s Outset project, who went on to win the 2012 European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) Grand Jury’s Prize (a special a prize awarded to the entrepreneurial initiative considered the most creative and inspiring in Europe) for its unique approach to supporting start-ups by helping society’s most vulnerable groups to find work through self-employment and enterprise
  4. The Premier League established Premier League Enterprise Academies (PLEAs) over 4 years ago. They have since successfully engaged a large number of professional football clubs in the enterprise agenda, including delivery of a wide variety of enterprise courses and local, regional and national events for young people. Key achievements of the programme to date have been:
    • PLEAs established at 20 clubs 80,000+ young people engaged in enterprise activity
    • 660 courses delivered including core programmes, Level 1 and Level 2 qualifications and other qualifications with 92% success rate
    • 77% secondary school engagement, 16% primary, 2% FE/HE, 5% other
    • 600 PLEA events organised, involving a total of 51,000 people
    • 4 Premier League Enterprise Challenge events delivered in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 during Global Entrepreneurship Week
    • £1.3 million granted to PLEA projects from the Premier League and Premier League Professional Footballers Association Fund
    • £3.8 million cash partnership funding secured to date
  5. The government’s economic policy objective is to achieve ‘strong, sustainable and balanced growth that is more evenly shared across the country and between industries’. It set 4 ambitions in the ‘Plan for Growth’, published at Budget 2011:
    • to create the most competitive tax system in the G20
    • to make the UK the best place in Europe to start, finance and grow a business
    • to encourage investment and exports as a route to a more balanced economy
    • to create a more educated workforce that is the most flexible in Europe

Work is underway across government to achieve these ambitions, including progress on more than 250 measures as part of the growth review. Developing an industrial strategy gives new impetus to this work by providing businesses, investors and the public with more clarity about the long-term direction in which the government wants the economy to travel.

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