Business leaders send a message to future Coventry and Warwickshire MPs on employment land

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A leading business organisation is calling on the next round of regional MPs to support its plea for more employment land in the area.

The Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce’s Property & Land Group produced a report in 2023 that showed a chronic need for more land to be allocated for business-use in order to help grow the economy and provide the jobs needed for people living in the region.

Following the announcement of the General Election, the need for more employment land has been made one of the Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce’s top priorities for local candidates in the run up to July 4, alongside skills and the cost of doing business.

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David Penn, partner at regional property agency Bromwich Hardy and past president of the Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce, is one of the driving forces behind the call for more employment land.

David Penn, past president of the Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of CommerceDavid Penn, past president of the Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce
David Penn, past president of the Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce

He said: “There is a chronic need in this area and we have to ensure that every single candidate knows just how great the need is.

“National parties will stand on a promise of growing the economy and creating good, well-paid jobs but that can only happen if places such as Coventry and Warwickshire can allocate enough land to businesses of all sizes and sectors.

“This isn’t something that will be the responsibility of local MPs alone – it has to be National Government and Local Authorities working in tandem to deliver what is needed – but we need our MPs to be behind this.

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“When supply is restricted, as it is now, it drives land prices to a point where some types of development don’t make sense financially and we end up with big shed after big shed because there is such high demand. We need big sheds, of course we do, but we need other types of commercial property too at a price that is affordable for tenants.

“So, if we want the economy to grow, if we want to attract inward investment and if we want our local businesses to be able to expand, we have to provide the land and the property to do that.

“Ultimately, these are the places that will provide the jobs for today and for the future and that’s why it is so vitally important not just for business, but for all of us.”

Corin Crane, chief executive of the Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce, said: “There are lots of barriers to business growth and the shortage of employment land is a major one for Coventry and Warwickshire.

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“That’s why we’ve made it one of key priorities in the run up to the election because it’s a really important conversation to have and is fundamental to growing our economy.”