Sheffield’s Olympic Legacy Park key contributor to Northern Powerhouse

The Olympic Legacy Park (OLP) will play a unique role in the Sheffield City Region’s contribution to the Northern Powerhouse. 

That’s the view of the Sheffield Local Enterprise Partnership’s (LEP) Chair, Sir Nigel Knowles, who visited the multi-million pound London 2012 legacy project. 

The OLP, currently being constructed in the East End of Sheffield, is a joint venture between Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Sheffield City Council. 

When fully operational, the 35-acre site is set to become an internationally recognised centre for health, wellbeing and innovation.  

An all-through school for two to 16 year olds, the Oasis Academy Don Valley, opened on the OLP with its first class in 2015 and construction work is now underway on site on the UTC Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park campus. Opening in September, the £10 million UTC facility will be home to 600 students aged 14 to 19 and will specialise in medical, sports sciences, and computing sectors.  

At the heart of the OLP will be Sheffield Hallam University’s Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre (AWRC) – the most advanced research and development centre for physical activity in the world, creating innovations that help people move. Toshiba and Westfield Health have already signed up to be tier one sponsors of the AWRC. 

Sir Nigel Knowles, who is also global co-chairman of DLA Piper, said: “The Olympic Legacy Park will play a central role in the growth and development of this area, and it will offer a unique contribution to the Northern Powerhouse. 

“The project will bring together knowledge, information, research and education to create a living laboratory for health and wellbeing. As the biggest of its kind in Europe, this project is an inspiring example of what can be achieved in our region. 

“It was hugely exciting to visit the site and see how quickly it is taking shape and meet the people driving it forward.”  

Richard Caborn, project lead for the Olympic Legacy Park, said: “We were delighted to welcome Nigel Knowles and LEP representatives to the Olympic Legacy Park.  

“This project is a unique example of collaborative working to achieve northern growth and establish the North as a global powerhouse.  

“Through the Innovation District, incorporating the Olympic Legacy Park and the Advanced Manufacturing Park, we’re at the forefront of partnership working to create a bank of intellectual property which is economically viable and creating wealth.” 

The world-class English Institute of Sport Sheffield, Olympic-standard twin-pad iceSheffield, and the Grass Bowl are all within OLP’s boundaries.

Richard Caborn and Nigel Knowles
Richard Caborn and Nigel Knowles

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