More than half our young people ‘plan to leave’

LANCASTER VIEWS 4
Looking down the Lune from Carlisle Bridge, St George's Quay and Millennium Bridge looking toward's St Peter's Cathedral.
LANCASTER VIEWS 4 Looking down the Lune from Carlisle Bridge, St George's Quay and Millennium Bridge looking toward's St Peter's Cathedral.

The future growth of the Lancaster district will be discussed at a seminar at Lancaster and Morecambe College next week.

Lancaster Vision will host the event seeking to understand what skills and jobs are needed to improve the economy and well-being of residents.

At a recent event over half (57.14 per cent) of young people said that when they had finished their education they planned to move away from the area, and the majority (64.29 per cent) did not think that there were job opportunities in the area for a career of their choice.

The discussion suggested a wide range of careers and many thought that there were more opportunities elsewhere.

Half did not think that there were enough work experience opportunities with local companies.

A spokeswoman for Lancaster Vision, which was established in 2012 by a group of citizens “fired by a shared pride, commitment and enthusiasm for Lancaster” said: “Lancaster Vision’s seminar aims to bring together academics, councillors, the Chamber of Commerce, employers and heads of schools/sixth forms and colleges to discuss these issues, inspired by a question and answer session with an expert panel headed by Professor Wolf, author of Review of Vocational Education: the Wolf Report.

“There are many challenges to unimpeded growth in the district and some of these were identified in the Turley Report.

“The Turley Report was published in 2015 as an independent report to inform Lancaster City Council’s local plan. Although mainly looking at housing need in Lancaster district the Turley Report recognises that housing, transport and employment are inextricably linked and has some comments to make on risks to the economic growth of the area.

“The main problems as outlined by Turley are lack of appropriately skilled workforce, insufficient business development along the Heysham-M6 corridor, lack of focus on encouraging local business start-ups and no clear vision or investment framework for the city centre.

Some of these problems were discussed by local groups as part of the local plan consultation, and conflicting opinions were thrown up. The Business Event brought comments from many that the district currently has a strong economy and that significant opportunities exist to maintain and strengthen the economy further. There was an acknowledgement that there are challenges around graduate retention and providing sufficient opportunities for business start-ups.

The challenges are crucial to the future growth of the local economy and the well-being of its residents.”

The seminar entitled From Education to Employment: Challenges and Opportunities, will be hosted at Lancaster & Morecambe College on March 15.