Solihull College & University Centre were the hosts as influential business and political leaders came together to speak about the future plans and successes of the Solihull region at its Blossomfield Campus last week.
Key speakers included MP for Meriden Caroline Spelman who informed the attendees how HS2 will give Solihull ‘21st century connectivity’ commenting “HS2 will act as a major draw for job creation and community success.”
She also praised Solihull for the leadership provided by its Council and added: “The borough has strong leadership and this is the key to its success. Local leaders are right to explore new ideas.
“The £500 million regeneration of North Solihull has transformed the lives of people who live there and one indicator is rising educational attainment.”
With Solihull constantly developing with new additions to the area including the Genting Arena at the NEC, there will inevitably be more jobs created for students currently training and studying in specific areas, such as those at Solihull College & University Centre.
Other key business people present included Leader of Solihull Council Bob Sleigh who highlighted the advantages of having HS2 interchange on Solihull’s doorstep: “We will be the first people in the UK to feel the benefits of HS2 and we are proud to be its first station.”
Councillor Sleigh, who has been elected chairman of the shadow board for the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA), also outlined the plans that Solihull has to create a Garden City, which will embrace the HS2 interchange. He explained why the creation of the WMCA and co-operation with the Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership was so important.
Paul Kehoe, chief executive of Birmingham Airport, said the success of the region “comes down to leadership”. He added: “The council is to be congratulated for taking some difficult decisions, around issues like the Combined Authority, and the bold plans for Garden City.”
Other speakers included Martin Clarke, the NEC’s marketing director, and Andy Cole, general manager of Touchwood.
With many current developments and future plans across the Solihull region, it leads to a positive future for students at the College with prosperous job opportunities aplenty.