Last Wednesday saw the launch of Wirral’s Enterprise Club (WEC) set up by Wirral’s Chamber of Commerce and Invest Wirral at Egerton House.
WEC is one of the first in the country to be established, as Merseyside has been chosen as the pilot area to launch these Clubs. I was at the launch representing the Minister of Employment Chris Grayling MP, as his PPS.
Both of us are strong advocates of Wirral, as Chris was the Shadow Minister for Merseyside for the last two years before the election and this scheme is his baby.
The Conservative Party has always been, and remains, the party of small business, so the WEC has been established to help create new start ups as well as to expand small and medium sized companies. The clubs will provide business support, business mentoring as well as links to the £185M North West Fund.
March’s jobless figures fell by 17,000 across the UK in the quarter to March and the number of people in work increased by 143,000. Added to that 1,300 new jobs are to be created over the next few months in Wirral – many of them in new retail and leisure opportunities, including around 700 jobs at New Brighton.
And over the last four weeks, 100 new companies have applied to set up on Wirral, all coming through JobCentre Plus and will be assisted by WEC.
We know it’s not going to easy to turn the economy around and get Britain back on its feet, but these figures and this initiative are certainly steps in the right direction.