Speech to Journalist's
Delivered by Mayor Bateman 2 June 05 Civic Centre
Wolverhampton is a City that currently provides employment for 100,000 people, it is a City of huge significance for a whole range of people who rely on its industry commerce and trade for jobs.
Over the last decade the City has seen huge change taking place in its economic sectors.
This is good news for the corporate city, Change is important as change is important for a City like Wolverhampton. Traditionally Wolverhampton has seen its development built on the basic success of engineering and the metal bashing trades.But the City has been changing, moving towards higher skilled jobs in the managerial, professional and associate professional grades.
Our City is involved in structural change and will continue to be. Over the last 3 years we have seen £250m or put another way £1/4Billion pounds spent on this City, big sums, huge investments. This investment has seen two shopping centres refurbished. £60m spent by the University in investing in the 'learning city' and the 'Learning Quarter' developmentnow taking place recently of course the new life being breathed back into the touchstone of Wolverhampton's past the Molineax Hotel.
Engineering has been a wonderful success story for Wolverhampton during its history here in the City . It changed our City from being a market town, to being a city that drew in labour from the surrounding areas doubling the size of the place. As manual labour for the Industrial revolution fed the growth in innovation in the factories.
We were imaginative then, and I am convinced that we have this imagination now, We also have the ability to secure new jobs in new economic sectors, whilst retaining the occupational mix we have inherited from our history.
I am looking to see the development of the Tourism sector to provide more growth, more development opportunities. The Leader talks of the future years..... he has done the maths and he suggests that more than a £1.5 billion is to be spent on the City in the next five years.
Becoming a City has been the difference, we all have a tremendous confidence in the future and we here in Wolverhampton are resourceful...that is why we have survived prospered and grown in that time. That is why you guy's are here today, to spend a few minutes listening to our top team here in the City explaining what our future holds for you!
I do hope that we can work with you the regional Press and Media over the next 12 months as the City puts its plans together and I hope that I can accentuate Cabinet Policy and the fine points of City Life that we have on offer here.
Author: Phil Bateman
Article Date: 5th June 2005