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More than £6million awarded to Discovery Park enterprise zone in Sandwich to revamp empty buildings

29 January 2014
by Eleanor Perkins

The Discovery Park in Sandwich is one of 12 enterprise zones in the UK to be awarded money for new infrastructure, it was announced today.

It will receive up to £6.05million for the refurbishment and fitting out of three empty buildings.

The idea is to turn the park - on the former Pfizer site - into prime economic land, attracting new businesses and jobs to the area.

The Discovery Park in Sandwich is receiving millions

The Discovery Park in Sandwich is receiving millions

The park is already home to more than 60 companies, with 1,400 employees. The ambition is to create 3,000 jobs by 2017.

Discover Park managing director Paul Barber said: "Access to this funding gives us the green light to refurbish and redesign three buildings, which were originally meant for a single company.

"Once completed, the buildings will offer a range of offices and labs, conference space and meeting rooms. This investment in Discovery Park will particularly allow us to address demand in a growing life sciences sector."

Discovery Park is one of the largest business parks in Europe and its specialist focus on science and technology is said to have allowed it to create a unique platform for emerging and established companies in the fields of biotechnology, life science, pharmaceuticals and research and development.

Discovery Park House in Discovery Park, the former Pfizer site in Sandwich

Discovery Park House in Discovery Park, the former Pfizer site in Sandwich

Communities minister Stephen Williams, who is visiting the park today, said: "Enterprise zones are at the centre of our long-term economic plans to build a stronger, more competitive business environment and a better future for Britain.

"This funding will give these areas the infrastructure they need to attract more investment, support the growth of local businesses and create jobs for hardworking people across the country."

Meanwhile, Locate in Kent chief executive Paul Wookey said: "We are dealing with an increasing number of life science companies wanting to join the life sciences cluster in Kent and looking for quality laboratory space.

"It is great that the government is going to help Discovery Park Ltd fund the refurbishment of the laboratories there so that a number of companies can benefit and bring their businesses and related jobs to Kent."

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