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District deal in West Sussex and Crawley aims to drive economic growth

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West Sussex County Council and Crawley Borough Council have signed a new district deal to increase joint collaborative working between the two councils.

The Crawley Growth Deal identifies a number of key projects which feature in the Crawley Place Plan, which was endorsed by both authorities earlier in the year.  Both councils will now focus on these key projects to create the conditions for economic growth residents experience and to unlock investment opportunities.

Leader of West Sussex County Council, Louise Goldsmith, said: “This is a fantastic opportunity to work closely with our local authority colleagues in the county. This is the first of our district deals, more will follow next year.

“The Crawley Growth Deal is the first in West Sussex and I am delighted that this council is once again jointly pioneering new approaches to delivering projects and services for the people of West Sussex in the best and most efficient way possible.”

Councillor Peter Lamb, Leader of Crawley Borough Council, said: “Crawley Borough Council is working to build a better future for Crawley.

“Regenerating the town centre and improving the quality of jobs for local people means attracting new investment into our town and the Growth Deal with West Sussex is an important step in making it happen.”

Key features of the agreement include:

  • Regenerating Crawley town center
  • An improvement program for Manor Royal
  • Closer working relationship with Gatwick Airport, including establishing a Gatwick Skills Laboratory to overcome potential skills shortages
  • Working to improve resident skills and employability in the Crawley area

 

For more information, follow West Sussex County Council on twitter at WSCCNews

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Business

Crawley jobs at risk as DW Sports goes into administration

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Jobs at DW Sports in Crawley town centre are at risk along with 1,700 hundred jobs across the country as the company announced it is to wind down the business.

The sports website has also been closed with immediate effect.

According to reports closing down sales are due to begin at the remaining stores as the business comes to an end.

Fitness First, a sister company of DW is to continue to operate as a separate company and its 43 clubs are not to be affected by the news.

Chief executive Martin Long said:

“As a consequence of Covid-19, we found ourselves in a position where we were mandated by Government to close down both our retail store portfolio and our gym chain in its entirety for a protracted period, leaving us with a high fixed-cost base and zero income.

“Like many other retail businesses, the consequences of this extremely challenging operating market have created inevitable profitability issues for DW Sports.

“The decision to appoint administrators has not been taken lightly but will give us the best chance to protect viable parts of the business, return them to profitability, and secure as many jobs as possible.

“It is a difficult model for any business to manage through without long-term damage, and with the limited support which we have been able to gain.

“Having exhausted all other available options for the business, we firmly believe that this process can be a platform to restructure the business and preserve many of our gyms for our members, and also protect the maximum number of jobs possible for our team members.”

Crawley Councillor Peter Smith, Cabinet member for Planning and Economic Development, said:

“This is terrible news for the staff of DW Sports; I sympathise with them and hope that they are able to secure other employment quickly. Our Employ Crawley service is currently providing free one-to-one employability and training support to jobseekers by phone, email and text.”

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