Northampton has an interesting industrial history. By 1831 a third of all the men living in the town were shoemakers, most of them working from home – making shoes in their cellars or garden sheds. Warehouses were built in the town to receive, inspect, pack and despatch the finished shoes. During WWI, the factories in the town supplied over 23 million pairs of boots for the armed forces.
In 1959 the M1 motorway was opened to the south-west of the town. Along with the already existing rail links, this meant that Northampton was now in the running to become a London commuter town. Undoubtedly, the existence of the M1 still plays a part in the fact that one year ago, Experian named Northampton as the ‘best performing town for business in the UK’.
Distribution, transport and communications are now the most important employment sectors for jobs in Northampton, mostly due to the town’s geographical position. Regeneration is preparing Northampton as a key area for future economic growth. ‘Northampton Alive’ is the collective name for the regeneration projects in the town. Some of the projects that are currently being developed are:
A. Improvement of Northampton’s Waterside
The development of ‘Northampton Waterside Enterprise Zone’ is still underway. Located in the centre of England, Northampton is a in a great position for the further development of a business destination that could benefit both national and international markets. The town is based on the M1 between London and Birmingham, and less than an hour away from five major airports. The aim is to attract 700 new companies to the zone by 2026. ‘FOUR St Peter’s Waterside’ is a new 50,000 sq ft large contemporary office development on the riverside in Northampton, which will include shops, coffee shops and cafes.
B. Redevelopment of Greyfriars
This week, Northampton made the news as the former Greyfriars bus station was completely demolished. The plan is to build a retail and leisure scheme, which is expected to open in autumn this year creating new jobs in Northampton. The new £7 million new bus station has already opened on the side of the old fish market, which again has brought new employment opportunities to the area.
C. Grosvenor Centre
£10m is being invested in the Grosvenor Centre, a retail destination. A range of large retailers are opening new stores here later this year, with the wider facilities also planned to be updated.
D. Project Angel
Project Angel is an important building development that will address the issue of a lack of modern office space in Northampton. The new building is expected to bring 2,000 professional workers, more office space and an additional £12 million to be put into the town centre economy.
Finally it was also announced this week that the green light has been given to build a £51.6 million bio power plant in Northamptonshire. This is forecasted to create over 100 jobs in Northamptonshire and will support local business growth.
If you are looking for a job in Northampton, you could download the Zoek App to let your new job find you. The app can be downloaded on IOS or Android.
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