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North East Connected

Hopping Across The North East From Hub To Hub

Reasons to Invest in North East England

ByDave Stopher

Sep 2, 2021

What makes North East England work? For decades now the at times government-supported, development emphasis has been concentrated outside of London and the South, and more specifically the North of the England. The phrase “Northern Powerhouse” has been on the lips of UK politicians for years now, specifically referring to investment (and attracting investment) in the North. Many regions have already felt the benefits of this initiative, with Manchester and the North West in particular now having a real reputation as an excellent location for business investment. Less well known as a business hub – but every inch a competitor – is the North East region. So should you invest here?

There are many reasons to invest in this part of the country. Right now, the region is known for excellent connectivity to the global market, business accommodation, and for having a highly skilled and flexible workforce. There is no doubt that the North East is a great region to invest in, and adding the low-cost base of the area makes for a real winning combination.

Although up and coming, investing in North East England, and its three major cities Newcastle, Durham, and Sunderland, is far from a venture into uncharted territory. Hitachi Rail Europe and the car manufacturing giant Nissan have already taken the plunge. Nissan now exports cars to Europe and beyond thanks to the strategic port access offered the region’s major settlements. By investing in North East England, you will not only find a region already geared towards enterprise, but also a tailor-made package of support and several incentives that make doing business in the area a profitable venture.

North East England is one of the UK’s fastest growing economies, and the short to long term future looks bright for the area. Specialising in business services, digital industries and the life sciences, the North East is also known for booming car manufacturing and subsea and offshore enterprises, situated as it is upon the North Sea, a global hotspot for the oil and energy industry.

Should you decide to invest in North East England, you will be joining global companies such as Siemens, GlaxoSmithKline, Caterpillar, as well as the aforementioned Nissan and Hitachi Rail Europe in a thriving business community making the most of this remarkable region.

History, Identity and Rejuvenation

The North East is no stranger to industry and commerce. In fact, you could say that the very identity of the place is intimately connected to its hundreds of years as an industrial and trading centre. Locally, residents of the two major industrial cities in the North East, Newcastle and Sunderland, have affectionate nicknames for each other, specifically “makum” for a resident of Sunderland and the slightly less common “takum” for a resident of Newcastle. These nicknames reflect the past shipbuilding industries that used to thrive along the River Tyne. Sunderland being the place where the ships where actually built, the demonym reflects the phrase “we makum (make them) and they takum (take them)”, with the latter section referring to the fact that the ships would then be taken down the river to be outfitted on the Tyne.

Such local nicknames reflect the history of the area, with the North East being one of the first industrialised places in the world. Newcastle itself was also traditionally known for a manufacturing industry that continues to this day. With several ports in the region, the culture has long been intimately connected with North Sea trade and, later, the oil industry that thrived after the discovery of oil there in the early 70s. The world over, the North East of England has always been associated with industry and the hard-working ethos of the local population. In line with the rest of the country, the decline of heavy industry in the area was felt sharply, but it was never wiped out. And as the presence of high-tech automobile manufacturing in the area today attests, the North East has never really lost its reputation for making things.

Yet it would be wrong to consider the North East a region ever tethered to heavy industry and hard industrial resilience. The city of Durham makes for something completely different. Boasting some of the most beautiful and historic architecture in the country, the town has been home to one of the world’s best universities for nearly 200 years, The University of Durham, which thrives to this day. This is perhaps where the region’s parallel reputation for innovation and a highly skilled workforce comes from. Modern railways were pioneered here, the lightbulb was invented here, and you can still visit what was the first electrified home in the world. Durham University continues to supply a stream of highly skilled graduates, many only too happy to stay and work in the area.

Industrial facilities in the North East are not old and dirty; they are modern, high-tech and bear the mark of the most cutting innovation. Again, in line with the rest of the country, the region has more than overcome the decline of traditional heavy industry and has supplanted it not only with modern light industry and business centres, but modern heavy industry and manufacturing. A tour of the average factory or car plant around here will show cutting edge facilities, kitted out with everything from innovative labour-saving machines, safety infrastructure, signage, and asset tags.

True Diversity

Old industry and new industry, heavy industry and light, academic excellence, a strong working ethos and a skilled workforce; the North East can certainly be seen as a region that offers a true diversity of investment opportunities. The variety of distinct industrial models is considerable, whether that be the energy industry, manufacturing, transport, technological development, innovation and even a thriving service sector. There is so much to invest in, and the skilled workforce to really make things happen.

And despite popular images of past heavy industry, the area is one of the country’s leaders for innovation into green technology and sustainable energy solutions, all supported by a network of academic excellence and industry support.

There is no doubt about it, the North East may be nominally up and coming, but it has actually been up for over 200 years. By investing in the region, you join a proud tradition – and lead it into the future.