Recent research by national commercial property consultancy Lambert Smith Hampton (LSH) shows that Yorkshire cities such as Leeds and York are in a strong position for sustaining economic growth in 2014.
The index ranks regional towns and cities on a combination of demographic, educational attainment, business activity levels, economic output, general affluence, sustainability and commercial property data,before awarding an overall score.
The results reveal that York has the third most highly-educated population in the country – alongside Reading and Warwick, and behind only Edinburgh and Guildford. Hull is the seventh greenest destination, alongside Bristol and Exeter. Leeds and Sheffield – the region’s larger centres for business – ranked in the top 30 for entrepreneurialism and fastest growth respectively.
However, despite strong results for the cities in the sub-indices, the overall top 10 remained dominated by cities in the South East, such as Guildford (2), St Albans (4) and Milton Keynes (9).
Matthew Scrimshaw, regional head of Yorkshire at LSH, said:
“As the UK climbs back to its pre-recession stability we look to local economies with the ambition and entrepreneurial zeal recognised in the study to support the national recovery.
“During the recession, northern cities have worked hard to provide the UK with thriving business bases outside of London, an effort mirrored in the results for growth and productivity.
“The naming of York as the third most highly educated city is particularly promising for the future of the region, as a number of bright young graduates look poised to further this success over the next few years.”
“Although the list is still made up of predominantly South East cities, this should not downplay the achievements of their northern counterparts.
“The North/South divide might still be present, but could also be advantageous to those thinking of setting up a business in the north.
“The study draws attention to the advances in construction, development and other production across Yorkshire, and the region has the added benefit of being better value for money than investors might find in the southern property market.
“The region now has the opportunity to maximise its value for local businesses and those looking to do business in the region, putting Yorkshire in good stead for a prosperous 2014.”