A host of top business leaders have thrown their weight behind a campaign to promote St Helens to the world.
Saints chairman Eamonn McManus and David Farmer, managing director of Pilks owners NGF Europe, are among those to back the initiative to “tell and sell” the St Helens story in a bid to attract investment and jobs.
Mr McManus, who is also the chairman of the newly-formed St Helens Economy Board, joined Alison Clark, Director of Arts Council, Stephen Carr, Head of Commercial Strategy of Peel Ports Group Ltd and NGF’s Mr Farmer and around 100 invited guests at St Helens Rugby Club’s Totally Wicked Stadium to launch a new drive to boost the St Helens economy.
The initiative will see businesses, major organisations and leading local figures work together to deliver a consistent message about St Helens so that the rest of the world starts to see and hear a more confident and consistent message about what makes St Helens special, regardless of which organisation is speaking.
Mr McManus said: “It was great to see so many representatives of the business community of St Helens at the launch of a bold and ambitious strategy which will both define and shape our vision and objectives to achieve significant and consistent economic growth in St Helens in the years ahead.
“St Helens is already experiencing proposed major development projects such as Peel Group’s at Haydock Point, the Bericote Group’s at Florida Farm North and Langtree’s at Parkside.
“Just these together have a total development value of more than £400 million and will create around 6,000 new jobs in logistics and associated industries. Network Space also has approval of £13 million of light industrial units which will create 500 jobs right here on the linkway.
“I was delighted that Alison, Stephen and David were able to join me in helping launch the new place initiative and ambassador programme.
“It is vital that the private sector and its representatives must be integrated and involved, and the St Helens Ambassadors programme will be a route to help further promote, position and sell the new St Helens.”
St Helens Ambassadors is a programme that will bring together the knowledge, networks, passion and determination of businesses, organisations and individuals as a powerful force.
Mr Farmer added: “It’s often said that St Helens was built on coal, glass and – quite fittingly this morning – rugby league.
“The truth is, in 21st century St Helens there’s a lot more to offer. So, do your bit. Fly the flag for St Helens, get your message out there and let’s stop keeping secrets!”