Business Council creates a collective voice on growth

Mar 07, 2012


They have representatives sitting on a new Business Council, set up by Milton Keynes Business Leaders Partnership to champion the views of business as the city begins its journey to economic recovery.
Plans for the council, which met for the first time last month, were unveiled by MKBLP chair Philip Smith (pictured) to an audience of senior businesspeople. 
The partnership will be represented on the Business Council, alongside the Institute of Directors, Milton Keynes & North Bucks Chamber of Commerce and Federation of Small Businesses as well as retailers, employers organisation the CBI and the manufacturers organisation EEF.
The city’s economic recovery is being led by Milton Keynes Council, which is negotiating with the Homes & Communities Agency to take over the development land and planning rights across Milton Keynes following the disbanding last year of growth delivery agency Milton Keynes Partnership.
MKBLP and the business community is anxious that its views are heard and put at the forefront of council thinking.
Speaking at the monthly lunch hosted by the Concrete Cattlemen’s Club, Mr Smith said: “The council will only listen to the voice of business in total. That is why we are creating a Business Council for Milton Keynes that will link all the organisations and be a council that represents the whole of business in the whole of the city.
“Only by having a collective voice are we able to get our message across and only then will the council accept that we speak authoritatively on behalf of business.”
The Business Council is to consider major strategic issues for the future growth of Milton Keynes, in particular transport and communications. Mr Smith told guests at the lunch, held at Galloways restaurant in Woburn, that MKBLP was working with researchers at the Open University to come up with improvements to the city’s transport system.
Mr Smith said: “This city needs a totally new mass transport system. It is revolutionary but it is already out there in other cities.”
Creative thinking was keyto the future of Milton Keynes, Mr Smith added. “You may not have the resources but, like our forefathers 40 years ago when the city was being built, we need to have that vision.”
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