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Gateway 14 in Stowmarket granted £18 million for skills and innovation centre





Funding of £18 million has been agreed for a skills and innovation centre at a Suffolk business park.

The three-story centre at Gateway 14, in Stowmarket, will help to support businesses, create jobs and boost the local economy.

Mid Suffolk District Council’s plans include office spaces, training and meeting rooms as well as a café and the £18.8 million funding has been agreed by Freeport East.

A CGI of Gateway 14 which is on the outskirts of Stowmarket next to the A14. Picture: Mid Suffolk District Council
A CGI of Gateway 14 which is on the outskirts of Stowmarket next to the A14. Picture: Mid Suffolk District Council

It has also been announced that two businesses specialising in sustainable and eco-friendly building materials have plans to move to the site – joining The Range’s distribution centre which is set to create 1,650 jobs.

Cllr Andy Mellen, Mid Suffolk District Council leader, said: “This is a significant moment for what is a really exciting project.

“This centre will create a fantastic talent pipeline for local businesses – with a particular focus on the green economy, digital and AI technology.

Gateway 14 in Stowmarket. Picture: Mark Westley
Gateway 14 in Stowmarket. Picture: Mark Westley

“Crucially, it will bring businesses and training together in the same centre.

“This will not only help bridge the skills gap, it will help firms to grow and innovate and encourage more inward investment.”

Mid Suffolk District Council, which owns Gateway 14, is working with West Suffolk College and the universities of Suffolk and Essex on the pre-planning and technical design phase of the skills and innovation centre.

Steve Beel, chief executive for Freeport East, added: "We are pleased to witness the excellent progress at Gateway 14, where sustainability lies at the heart of the development vision.

“The new centre would not be possible without the funding mechanisms made available by the freeport model, but it is the close and collaborative working between Mid Suffolk District Council, Gateway 14 and Freeport East that drives this success.

"The skills and innovation centre, along with other recent announcements, significantly strengthens our ability to market the Stowmarket and Mid Suffolk area to various companies, both in the UK and internationally.

“This positions our region as one of the top choices for inward investment in the UK."