The Council's vision for an Inclusive Economy is to make Cheshire West and Chester a greener, fairer and stronger place to live, work and play.
This involves bringing together businesses, and the public, community and voluntary sectors, to enable local people to contribute and benefit from their local economy and ensure that no-one is left behind.
The Inclusive Economy Strategy was published in 2022. It prioritises reducing poverty and inequality, supporting people to develop new skills and get into good jobs with fair wages, combatting the climate emergency, supporting community wellbeing, and enhancing the vibrancy of our Borough.
There are 12 action points identified in the strategy. Click on each below to learn more about our plans and how you can play your part:
Implementing skills escalators that bring businesses and education providers together to develop joined up skills and career pathways for our key sectors.
To develop a more inclusive and resilient economy, understanding the skills required for our industries and developing routes for all to access these opportunities, is key. This activity sets out to develop, implement and expand the ongoing project to produce Skills Escalators, which illustrate the joined-up skills pathways into, and to progress through, careers in our priority sectors.
More information on skills escalators, career pathways, and which training providers are providing courses, can be found here:
Increasing green skills and jobs to help more people to upskill and access green jobs that support green business opportunities in our transition to a net zero economy.
Transition to net zero will change the type and nature of jobs and the skills needed to do them. This will involve new jobs in green industries and changes to the way work is done within other sectors and roles.
You can find out more on Cheshire West and Chester’s approach to the Climate Emergency here:
Expanding digital inclusion, ensuring access for all through enhancing digital connectivity, infrastructure, equipment, and skills.
Digital connectivity is more critical than ever to households and business, with COVID-19 making online learning and working a necessity for many. Digital skills and access have improved over the course of the pandemic, but there is now a sharper digital divide for those who remain left behind. We need to ensure West Cheshire has the digital connectivity, infrastructure and skills to support the needs of all people, places, current and future sectors.
More information about the Council’s work on digital inclusion can be found here:
Nurturing youth aspiration in our communities that are less connected to career opportunities, providing greater information and inspiration.
There are educational and employment inequalities faced by young people across our borough and a need to build ambition and aspiration amongst all young people, to build greater awareness of opportunities locally and connections to these. This proposed activity will build on The Cheshire and Warrington Pledge’s work to enhance levels of aspiration and access to opportunities for young people, with a particular focus on raising the aspirations and opportunities for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds and vulnerable groups to reduce inequalities.
Find out more about the Council’s Youth Work strategy here:
You can find out about the work of The Cheshire and Warrington Pledge Partnership online.
Building stronger communities through targeted regeneration efforts that improve the quality and sustainability of our urban and rural communities and deliver for our most deprived neighbourhoods.
Our borough is home to a diverse set of towns, sizeable rural areas, a historic city, and high value hubs of industry. Many of our communities are affluent, but 16 of our neighbourhoods are among the most deprived in the country. This proposed activity is to build better places throughout our borough.
An example of building stronger communities in action is the Chester One City Plan, a 15 year strategy to guide the future economic regeneration of Chester, which seeks to co-ordinate and drive a programme of public and private investment and development activity into Chester city centre. Find out more here:
You can find out more about our plans to build stronger communities in this video.
Improving transport access to job opportunities with increased public and active travel links, increasing connectivity to break down key barriers that our communities face.
Poor transport connections across our borough and the wider county are a key barrier to inclusivity. Lack of public transport access prevents people accessing job opportunities whilst businesses struggle to fill vacancies, and one third of our residents live in rural areas where lack of connections also result in exclusion. This proposed action intends to improve connections between deprived areas and business parks & industrial hubs, and better connect excluded rural communities.
The Council’s strategies for transport in each part of the Borough can be found here:
Supporting sustainable food and agriculture, and increase natural capital, through land management that enhances viability, cuts carbon emissions, increases flood resilience, access to local food and greenspace.
This project will capitalise on opportunities for sustainable food, farming and address challenges such as changes in farm support, skills shortages, flood risk and environmental degradation. It will deliver benefit for landowners, famers, workers and communities, support transition to net zero and support toward our ambitions to become a Sustainable Food Place.
Creating a long-term plan for housing retrofit that works in partnership to decarbonise our housing stock to help tackle the climate emergency and reduce fuel poverty.
Decarbonising our housing stock through cost effective retrofit delivered at scale and pace is vital, not just in tackling the climate emergency and achieving net zero, but also in tackling our poverty emergency; improving health and wellbeing; supporting local business growth; and creating green skills and good jobs accessible to local people.
Find out more about home energy help for residents here:
Promoting good employment and business best practice including paying the real living wage, supports health and wellbeing of workers, and drives innovation, decarbonisation, and productivity.
Businesses and social enterprises can create an inclusive economy through good employment practice, supporting workforce health & wellbeing, buying local, and reducing carbon impacts.
There are some great training and support resources for businesses that can be found online:
Establishing an anchors network of the key public and private institutions, service providers and employers that hold power to transform the inclusivity of our Borough.
Anchor institutions are big and locally rooted organisations that employ many people, spend substantial amounts of money, own and manage land and assets and often deliver crucial activities such as healthcare, education, or public services. We have established the West Cheshire Anchor Network comprising key local organisations and work collectively to maximise the difference anchors can make on local employment and incomes, circulation of wealth, and climate emergency and sustainability goals.
You can find out more information online:
Strengthening local supply chains and social value to capture greater social value from Council procurement and other anchor institution supply chains.
This project will use procurement and supply chains to support local enterprises and employment, create social value, and build community wealth as money recirculates around the local economy rather than leaking out.
Find out more about the Council’s approach to Social Value here:
Providing start-up and social enterprise support that supports more enterprises to start, survive, and develop, including social and community enterprises and alternative business models.
We want more businesses and social/community enterprises to set up and support good quality, sustainable jobs, especially in areas where there are fewer businesses and greater social mobility challenges.
Support for business start-ups can be found on the Let’s Talk Business website: