To sustainably grow Keighley as a forward-facing, premier manufacturing, engineering and technology hub, celebrating its rich heritage across industry, culture and sport.
The town will be known for its wealth of opportunity, delivering access to jobs, skills, training and education to help its residents and businesses thrive, and prepare the next generation for future employment.
With its diverse economy, quality infrastructure, thriving town centre heart, and superior digital connectivity it will be the place to invest, live, work, play and shop, where people, young and old, can enjoy a strong sense of community, healthy lives and a prosperous future.
A place for all to want to be part and proud of.
Strategic objectives for Keighley
- To build growth in Keighley’s key sectors of manufacturing, engineering and technology by facilitating inclusive economic growth, supporting SMEs and entrepreneurial opportunities including start ups, and getting young people into employment
- To provide high-quality digital infrastructure to support continued economic growth and address digital inclusion to enable Keighley residents to access training and technology and support up-skilling and future employment
- To improve physical accessibility in and around Keighley to support business and housing growth including by improving access to sustainable active travel modes to address congestion and support Net Zero
- To reinvigorate Keighley town in general by identifying opportunities for acquisition, preparation, remediation or development of land uses including housing, and in addition within the town centre by delivering stronger streetscapes, corridors and heart, cultural and leisure space, overall diversifying the offer to increase footfall and activity throughout
- To support the health and well-being of Keighley through providing access to a range of sport, leisure, cultural, creative and recreational facilities, services and activities and access to clean, safe and green spaces
- To utilise the rich heritage and character of Keighley to strengthen its position and make the most of its local economic assets
- To support the growth of arts and cultural tourism and Keighley as a destination, maximising the benefits of wider association with nearby attractions
- To provide access and infrastructure to enable training and educational opportunities working in conjunction with Keighley College, its partners and other organisations to address skills gaps and increasing employability associated with continued growth in manufacturing, engineering and technology sectors
Keighley represents the fifth highest Town Deal investment offer nationally. Investments over £25m are limited to the most ambitious Town Investment Plans that promise to deliver transformational impacts not only for towns, but also the wider region and/or the country. In respect of Keighley, the Town demonstrated the regional significance of the manufacturing and engineering sector to achieve an investment offer that exceeds £25m on the basis of the following:
- Leeds City Region (LCR) enjoys a global reputation for its advanced manufacturing sector and has the highest number of manufacturing jobs in the UK – the sector comprises just under a fifth of the West Yorkshire economy.
- Keighley has a high concentration of manufacturing jobs (19%) and has the potential to become a key driver for the UK economy, improving resilience. This is higher than Bradford District (13%), LCR (10%) and more than double the figure for England (8%).
- Keighley has a diverse and well-established manufacturing sector with a quarter of the local workforce employed by it and the sector could grow quicker with investment and support through the TIP.
- Keighley’s fastest growing sub sectors (motor vehicles, chemicals, textiles, electrical and drinks manufacturing) are all included as key sectors in the Leeds City Region Strategic Economic Plan.
- Local stakeholders report a strong demand for good quality industrial stock in Keighley and the wider Airedale area.
- Market failure – high demand for quality industrial stock is not being met due to site constraints and viability such as abnormal development costs typical of brownfield land in a flood area; sustainable energy costs and remediation and site infrastructure.