New chair sought for Hereford Enterprise Zone

Andrew Manning-Cox.

The search is on for a new strategic leader to guide the next phase of development on Hereford Enterprise Zone.

Over the last decade, Skylon Park, Hereford Enterprise Zone, has developed into a dynamic business location for investors from the UK and overseas, with more than 60 acres of the Rotherwas site sold or developed.

Now, a new non-executive chair of Herefordshire Enterprise Zone Board is being recruited to continue to provide strategic leadership and to act as an ambassador for Skylon Park as it enters another exciting phase.

The new chair will make a significant contribution to encouraging new investment on Skylon Park, which saw two flagship developments come to fruition in 2021 with the opening of the Shell Store business incubation centre and the £9 million Cyber Quarter — Midlands Centre for Cyber Security.

Current chairman Andrew Manning Cox is stepping down in early 2022 after serving for a four year extended term.

He said: “I have been privileged to oversee the major steps forward for Skylon Park, including the resilience and recovery of many of its businesses during and after one of the most difficult economic periods any of us have experienced. It is the jewel in the crown of economic development in the county and has an enviable reputation in the Midlands and beyond.

“This has only been possible through the dedication and hard work of many people, including my fellow board directors, our Enterprise Zone team and our colleagues and partners at Herefordshire Council. I am proud of them all.”

Leader of Herefordshire Council, councillor David Hitchiner, added: “The Zone is proving a considerable success, with more than 600,000 sq ft of new development hosting more than 1,000 jobs.

“We’re indebted to Andrew for his leadership over the last four years. When he became chair the Cyber Centre had not even broken ground. Now it is a stunning flagship project which will benefit not just Herefordshire but the wider region.

“Similarly, during his tenure, the derelict former munition factory Shell Store has been developed into an award-winning project and Herefordshire’s first dedicated business incubation hub.

The job description states: “The chair will be a highly respected individual with a proven track record in the business community, passionate about the economic well-being of Herefordshire and able to provide dynamic, high-profile leadership for the Zone. A knowledge of or background in commercial property would be valuable, but this should not be a deterrent to otherwise suitably qualified candidates.”

The appointment will be for a period of three years and will run from 1 April 2022.

A candidate’s pack can be obtained by visiting skylonpark.co.uk or from the Enterprise Zone managing director Mark Pearce by emailing mark@skylonpark.co.uk.