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Gloucestershire Business News

Partnership helping to drive the Forest's economy

Over 70 businesses and organisations supported the third Forest Economic Partnership (FEP) Stakeholder meeting at Vantage Point Business Village, Mitcheldean.

FEP is bringing together, businesses, councils and organisations to establish a united voice to promote a thriving economy in the Forest of Dean and is rapidly growing.

The four working sub-groups, led by Forest business leaders, are already taking action, making connections and gathering data. Each leader gave feedback on their group visions and activity to date:

• Education & skills, led by Julian Grail, Grail Engineering

• Transport & infrastructure, led by Marcus Morley-Jones, NGP Ltd.

• Digital connectivity, led by David Trevelyan, Sustain You

• Bridges & borders, led by Andrew Callard, Aimed Business

A SWOT workshop looking at Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats for the district sparked active participation from all attendees in a lively discussion.

Andrew Callard, chair of the Forest Economic Partnership said: "Despite being a peak summer holiday week, it was great to see over 70 businesses and organisations represented at the FEP Steering Group Meeting.

"Not only did they warmly receive the activities and successes of our four sub-groups but also made great contributions to benchmark Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, & Threats for the District. A draft will be circulated in September for all members to comment.

"As a growing Partnership we always welcome more views to help inform the economic decisions for all our futures. Anyone interested can find out more by emailing FEP@fdean.gov.uk."

Cllr Tim Gwilliam, leader of the Forest of Dean District Council said: "I have no doubt that FEP will achieve great things for the Forest of Dean.

"With such a powerful vision for the future and looking beyond what has historically been accepted, I have no doubt that FEP will continue to challenge geographical and political boundaries to make the Forest of Dean an important economic partner for the future.

"FEP is giving the Forest of Dean a much needed voice and direction, at the right time and with the right people getting involved."

Pictured left to right: Andrew Callard, chairman of FEP and director of Aimed Business; Julian Grail, Grail Engineering; David Trevelyan, Sustain You and Marcus Morley-Jones, NGP Ltd.

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