More than 100 businesspeople attended Huddersfield Unlimited’s inaugural Business Forum to hear about progress on Huddersfield’s £1 billion future.

The event, held at the Magic Rock Tap Room, was focused on investment. It was attended by Ian Noke, from sponsors Handelsbanken, and Richard Ralph from Foresight Group.

Huddersfield is increasingly drawing attention on the national stage with over £1 billion of investment heading to the area. This includes the development of a new Radisson RED hotel at the historic George Hotel and the University of Huddersfield’s National Health Innovation Campus (NHIC).

Attendees discussed the opportunities created by significant investment into the town, including the new West Yorkshire Investment Zone and the Station to Stadium Enterprise Corridor initiative. Read more about that HERE.

Another key point of interest was the opportunities for health and wellbeing organisations, stemming from the imminent launch of the NHIC later this year.

Infrastructure was also a hot topic for debate, with attendees discussing the potential for enhanced journeys and connectivity with the TransPennine Route Upgrade (TRU) and the investment into the Penistone Line, linking Huddersfield and Sheffield.

Speaking of the event launch, Huddersfield Unlimited chairman Sir John Harman (above) said: “The pace of new investment in Huddersfield is picking up, with cranes on the skyline and the announcement of Government support for our part of the West Yorkshire Investment Zone – which is why we decided that now is the perfect time to launch our Business Forum series.

“At these events there are no set speeches, no long presentations, and no politics. What we offer is a chance for businesses, investors, developers and anyone with a keen interest in Huddersfield’s future to keep abreast of what’s happening in the town, share intelligence, make connections and identify opportunities. Our town is on the up again, and you want to be part of it.

“The turnout at our first event has been fantastic. It really is empowering to see just how many people are backing our town. I would also like to say a big thank you to our sponsors, Handelsbanken, and our hosts Magic Rock.”

Ian Noke, branch manager at Handelsbanken Huddersfield, said: “We were delighted to sponsor the first ever Business Forum.

“These events from Huddersfield Unlimited offer a valuable opportunity for local leaders by providing them with the contacts, insights and opportunities to contribute to the growth and success of Huddersfield as a town.

“As a local relationship bank, we know the importance of creating and nurturing relationships to see the very best results.

“We hope that we can help Huddersfield Unlimited to do just that through its Business Forum and create a strong and sustainable future for Huddersfield.”

Richard Ralph, investment manager, private equity at Foresight Group, said: “It was great to see such a thriving network at the Huddersfield Unlimited Business Forum, including a number of promising SMEs seeking equity investment.

“Huddersfield is a key region Foresight are targeting for future investment and we would welcome discussions with all Huddersfield-based SMEs seeking up to £10m of equity finance.”

For more information on Huddersfield Unlimited’s Business Forum events, please visit: