Growth hub a great boost for Cirencester

Paul Brown, Teresa North and Simon King of the RAU with CCDTs Jonathan Davies

Paul Brown, Teresa North and Simon King of the RAU with CCDTs Jonathan Davies - Credit: Archant

Start-ups will be able to harness their full potential with the help of a new Growth Hub in Cirencester

The Royal Agricultural University and GFirst LEP, Gloucestershire’s Local Enterprise Partnership, have announced the new Growth Hub will be based at the RAU’s campus in Cirencester.

The venture will help to grow the Gloucestershire economy by assisting local businesses of all sizes and from all sectors to accelerate their growth and exploit their full potential.

The news has been welcomed by one of its backers – The Cirencester Community Development Trust –as well as Cotswold District Council, Cirencester Town Council and Cirencester Chamber of Commerce.

The Growth Hub will build on the RAU’s existing areas of expertise by supporting businesses working in agri-technology or based in rural environments across the county.

In addition it will deliver business development, business support networks, strategy and advisory services, business information and enterprise support.

The Cirencester Community Development Trust, which was set up with the aim of facilitating the economic and community life of people in the town and surrounding area, was looking at sites for a possible hub back in 2013 and board member Jonathan Davies has been working closely with the RAU to make it happen.

“We have wanted a centre for innovation for quite a while now,” Jonathan explained. “We originally looked at facilities and buildings within the town, but are delighted that it will be up at the university.

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“Start-ups and existing businesses will benefit from this development and having a quality facility like this on our doorstep will be a great boost for the town and the business community.

“We are excited to be involved in this initiative, it is a great way to support the growth and development of businesses in the town.

“In a prelude to the hub we hosted a business forum between regional business leaders and students from Cirencester College. They showed us that there is some real talent out there. One of the ideas, SoberDrive, has gone on to win major awards for being so innovative,” he added.

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