Northern England encompasses the North-West, Yorkshire, Humberside and the North-East, with the major economic centres being found in Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds, Hull, Sheffield and Newcastle. With easy access to a number of Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty including The Lake District, The Peak District and miles of rugged and wild coastline, the region provides an excellent backdrop in terms of work-life balance.
The North West is historically linked with the textiles industry, but in today’s economy many of the regions cities and towns have undergone major regeneration and transformation, particularly over the last twenty years; many following the lead of Greater Manchester in terms of economic, social and structural investment.
The digital scene has grown at a fast rate and Manchester Science Park and Media City are all strong indicators that the region has progressed some way beyond its manufacturing roots. In Liverpool the banking, finance and insurance sectors are one of the fastest growing areas of the economy with many major businesses either relocating or expanding their operations to the North West. Liverpool is also an important centre for public administration having offices for several government departments including agencies such as HM Passport Office, Criminal Records Bureau and HMRC, accounting for 40% of employment in the city.
The North West is culturally rich; music plays a key role, with numerous world famous bands hailing from the North, a trend starting with The Beatles in Liverpool and continuing with the explosion of the Manchester music scene. Sport plays a key part too, with two of the worlds’ most famous and successful football clubs being situated just thirty-five miles apart.
According to research by Cushman and Wakefield, Manchester is ‘the second-best city to locate a business in the UK’ and The Financial Times stated that ‘the North West economy, led by the redevelopment of Manchester and Liverpool, is a genuine rival to overheated London’.
Yorkshire is the largest county in the United Kingdom and includes the large metropolitan areas of Leeds – Bradford – Wakefield and Sheffield – Rotherham alongside rural areas such as the North Yorkshire Moors and the Yorkshire Dales.
The region is in transition as it moves from an economy that has historically relied on manufacturing, textiles and agriculture to a much more diverse market and yields around 8% of UK GDP. Manufacturing currently accounts for just under a fifth of the region’s economy whilst services such as banking, finance and insurance now feature heavily in the region. There is a growing presence of firms in distribution and hospitality, and the growth sectors of the economy include digital industries, environmental technologies, financial services, construction, retail, real estate and health & education. The presence of national parks in the region means that there is also an established tourist industry.
Yorkshire has been the focus of various development initiatives and local enterprise partnerships. Many large British companies are based in Yorkshire or were founded there and there are also a number of innovation centres belonging to leading companies, and a range of spin-off companies linked to major universities.
The latest Government statistics show that North East England is one of the UK’s fastest growing economies – valued at £35.5bn. Built on a proud history of pioneering innovation in the industrial revolution, the region now hosts a broad range of successful industries who call the North East home, including business services, engineering, technology and life sciences.
Advanced manufacturing continues to excel in the region; the automotive industry is renowned for its education facilities and commitment to world-changing research and development into low carbon and electric vehicles. The buzzing IT and digital sector is estimated to be worth £1.1bn to the North East economy by 2020, and Business Services employs more than 130,000 people across Finance, Professional and Business Services.
Leeds is now recognised as a centre for financial services companies and the selection of Hull as ‘Capital of Culture’ in 2017 is a further indication of the continued regeneration of this city. The economy is sustained by a diverse mix of large corporates and entrepreneurial SME’s.
For those seeking to even out their work-life balance, the North East has a wealth of cultural landmarks to visit, from majestic Durham and the famous Durham Cathedral, to cosmopolitan yet historic Tyne-and-Wear and picture-perfect Northumberland with its castle-lined coastline.
If you would like further advice on finding a job or filling a vacancy in the North West, Yorkshire or the North East, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our experienced regional specialists: –