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Coventry named as a young, innovative city

Published Friday, 29 January 2016

Coventry has been ranked in the top 10 cities in the UK for innovation and housing stock growth.

The Centre for Cities Annual Outlook report is a health check report into 63 cities across the UK.

And it reveals Coventry’s performance in a number of key areas, from housing to businesses and broadband to being environmentally friendly. It also gives a snapshot of the make-up of the city’s population.

The city was named in the top 10 cities for population growth - eighth of the 63 cities after seeing the population rise to 337,400. Slough and Milton Keynes head the table.

The Council ranked highly as an innovative city – fourth in the table behind Cambridge, Aberdeen and Aldershot, with 17.5 patents granted per 100,000 of population in 2014.

And the city again made the top 10 for the highest rise in housing stock, with a rise of 1,100 homes to 135,870, putting it in ninth place. The average house price was just over £160,400.

But it was ranked lowly for employment rate – 56th out of 63, with a rate of 66.1% and came in at 59th in the table for the percentage of working age people with no formal qualifications – 14.8%. The average weekly wage for city people was £505 - £1 above the national average.

The city’s population profile showed just over a quarter of the city (26.17%) aged 19 or under, the ninth highest, with another 17.5% in their 20s – 11th out of 63.

And the city came in at seventh for people born outside the UK, at just over 21%.

The city ranked poorly for CO2 emissions – 51st out of the 63, but highly for people with high speed broadband at 18th.

Cllr Abdul Khan, Deputy Leader of the City Council, said: “We are a city that is growing and attracting interest from developers and businesses and as a Council we are committed to delivering quality jobs for local people, which will lead to a better standard of living for all residents in the city.

“It’s good to see the city ranked highly again for innovations, and the young population shows how important our universities are to us and what an impact they are having on the city.

“And the future is looking bright, with the recent announcements by Jaguar Land Rover and LTC, along with work starting on the Friargate development - which will create up to 15,000 jobs - and investment from Coventry University as it continues to attract talented students from around the world.

“But we also know there is work ahead, our employment rate and the number of people with no formal qualifications show that we need to do more as we continue our drive towards taking our place as a top 10 city.

“We need to help make sure people are ready for employment as the city gathers more interest from firms around the UK and abroad, so Coventry jobs are there for Coventry people.

“Coventry has always had a skilled workforce ready to adapt to the challenges ahead and we need to continue that so we can deliver more economic growth and success. We will continue working with partners to make sure that happens."

The report also looks at devolution deals, including plans for the West Midlands Combined Authority, which will give the region more powers over areas such as adult skills training and transport.

To see the full report, visit http://www.centreforcities.org/  

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