The sale of a piece of land that will enable further Council investment to create jobs and boost skills in West Suffolk has been confirmed.

West Suffolk Council has bought approximately 6.9 acres of land at Zone 3 of Suffolk Business Park, Bury St Edmunds from Churchmanor Estates Company plc.

It’s part of a wider £12.1m investment by the Council and partners in new incubation units to support locally the growth of the Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering (AME) sector. This will provide much needed space for new businesses in that sector to flourish and be supported as well as encourage jobs growth.

The Zone 3 sale, will allow the construction of 40,000sqft of industrial units which have the backing of the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership and Suffolk County Council.

The scheme is part of the Council’s wider ambitions, with partners, to simulate the local economy and grow it to meet current and future needs.

West Suffolk Council, through the former St Edmundsbury Borough, led on securing land for the creation of Suffolk Business Park and the Eastern Relief Road that serves it, as well as securing enterprise zone status.

The project recognises the potential of the Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering (AME) sector to capitalise on business growth  along the A14 corridor between Felixstowe and Cambridge. The investment in incubation units also presents wider opportunities for the business sector growth across the whole of West Suffolk as part of the Cambridge to Norwich Tech corridor

Cllr John Griffiths, Leader of West Suffolk Council, said: “We are delighted to complete this purchase and the next stage in our wider £12.1m investment in the delivery of new business incubation units and our support of the development of the advanced manufacturing and engineering sector in West Suffolk.

“This will not only create the environment for new and start-up businesses but also collaboration space, further stimulating the growth in and for West Suffolk, of this important, energetic and versatile sector. We are also of course grateful for the support of Suffolk County Council and New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership and that some of the business rates from the Enterprise Zone can be reinvested here locally, enabling this growth to take place.”

Cllr Susan Glossop, Cabinet Member for Growth at West Suffolk Council, said: “We know that STEM skills – Science Technology Engineering and Maths (STEM) – are an important part of the future in sectors including advanced manufacturing and engineering and we have already seen investment in educational facilities in West Suffolk to support this growth.

“We have supported and facilitated the establishment of a West Suffolk Manufacturing Group and this investment in incubation units is the next natural step towards securing a vibrant future for the advanced manufacturing and engineering sector and jobs growth here in West Suffolk.”

Matt Cloke, Development Director of Churchmanor Estates said “We are very pleased to be able to facilitate the development of the incubation units by West Suffolk Council. We see these as a benefit both to Suffolk Business Park as a location, complementing our plans for development of larger premises for businesses to grow into, and to West Suffolk more generally by reinforcing its status as a centre for economic growth and innovation.”

Suffolk Business Park is an exciting new gateway development at junction 45 of the A14 in Bury St Edmunds. The Park provides the opportunity for the development new highly strategically located employment units of a variety of sizes, and benefits from major infrastructure improvements including the new Eastern Relief Road.