Agenda and minutes

LEP - Lancashire Innovation Board - Monday, 7th June, 2021 10.30 am

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Contact: Mike Neville  Tel 01772 533431 Email -

No. Item

Andy Walker, Head of Business Growth, Business and Innovation, Economic Development, Lancashire County Council.

Maya Ellis, Innovation and Digital Lead, Business and Innovation, Economic Development, Lancashire County Council.

Jen Rae NP11, Innovation Director.

Richard Lydon, Materials Consultant.

Sarah Kemp, Chief Executive, Lancashire Enterprise Partnership.

Mike Neville, Senior Democratic Services Officer, Lancashire County Council.



Welcome and Apologies


The Chair welcomed everyone to the meeting and Mike Neville confirmed that that apologies had been received from Gaynor Dyke.


Membership and Terms of Reference pdf icon PDF 224 KB

Additional documents:


The Chair welcomed Mike Gibson, Judson Smythe and Melissa Conlon, who had been appointed to the Board by the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership Board on the 23rd March 2021, bringing the membership up to the maximum 15 permitted under the Terms of Reference.




1.  That the membership of the Innovation Board, as set out below, is noted.

2.  That the current Terms of Reference of the Innovation Board, as set out at Appendix 'A' to the report presented, are noted and a copy placed in the Minute Book

G Baldwin



C Whelan

Deputy Chair

(Corporate & Finance)

T Attard OBE

Co-opted LEP Member

(Corporate & Manufacturing)

M Conlon

Skills & International Rep


R Holland


Innovate UK

D Williams

Universities Rep

Lancaster University

N Jones

Research & Science Rep

Engineering & Physical

Sciences Council

J Binnion

Start-up, Micro & SME Rep

Growing Club Ltd

J Dalton

Strategy & Branding Rep

Groundswell Innovation Ltd

L Green

Thematic - Health & Life


Innovation Agency (AHSN)

L Roche

Thematic - Energy &


Westinghouse Ltd

P Lee

Thematic - Manufacturing &


Victrex Ltd

M Gibson

Thematic – Digital and


Miralis Data Limited

G Dykes

Thematic - Professional &


Grant Thornton

J Smythe

 Thematic – Manufacturing

& Construction (additional)

MGS Plastics Limited



Declaration of Interests

Board Members are asked to consider any pecuniary or non-pecuniary interests they may wish to declare to the meeting in relation to the items of business on the agenda.




No declarations of interest were made at this point in the meeting.



Minutes of the Last Meeting pdf icon PDF 230 KB

The Board is asked to agree that the Minutes of the meeting held on the 19th February 2021(copy attached) are confirmed as an accurate record of the meeting and signed by the Chair in due course. 



The Chair reported that the Board would receive updates on the Lancashire bid for City of Culture 2025 at future meetings.


Resolved: That the Minutes of the meeting held on the 19th February 2021 are confirmed as an accurate record and signed by the Chair in due course.


Lancashire Innovation Festival pdf icon PDF 218 KB

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Maya Ellis, Innovation and Digital Lead, presented a report on the current action plan for the development of the next Lancashire Innovation Festival which would be held on the 4th – 8th October 2021.


It was reported that the Festival would be a mixture of panel discussions with online networking, Case Studies, 1:1 interviews and some live in-person activity, subject to any Covid 19 restrictions in operation at the time. Discussions were also underway regarding a hybrid hosting platform with another Lancashire event that would allow in person events to be hosted while also streaming the content online for wider accessibility. It was anticipated that the majority of content and speakers for the Festival would be agreed by late August 2021.


Resolved: That the update on the arrangements for the 2021 Innovation Festival, as set out in the report presented, are noted.


Lancashire Innovation Observatory pdf icon PDF 111 KB

Additional documents:


Maya Ellis, Innovation and Digital Lead, updated the Board on the development of the Innovation Observatory including activity by FutureGov in relation to stakeholder engagement and design work to scope the functions for an interactive innovation platform for key stakeholders/clusters.


The Board noted that some interviews needed to be held and research findings finalised before FutureGov produced a final report which would help shape future innovation across Lancashire. A Beta version of the interactive platform would also be produced and made available for testing. 


Resolved: That the updates set out in the report are noted and the Board continue to engage with the research being undertaken by FutureGov in relation to the development of the Innovation Observatory.


National and Regional Policy and Cluster presentation. pdf icon PDF 193 KB


The Board received three presentations on the national, regional and more local perspective regarding innovation.


Presentation 1 – Jen Rae, NP11 Innovation Director.


Jen reported that NP11 is a network of the 11 Local Enterprise Partnerships in the North and was working with the NHSA, Universities and other stakeholders to influence the delivery of innovation policy. From a national perspective innovation was emerging as a key priority. The Government had announced the 'Levelling Up' white paper with the national innovation policy was to be published at the end of June 2021, followed by the research and development place strategy in July 2021. 


Over the next 6 weeks Jen would work with LEPs to finalise their position in order that they are able to present a unified case regarding the requirements to make the best of the opportunity to deliver the Government's strategy on innovation.


Presentation 2 - Rick Holland, NW Regional Head of InnovationUK


Rick focussed on the strategic role of Innovation UK which is to identify what assets exist in the north West and how can they be made ready so that they can align with the national policy.


In the past the definition of clusters/sectors had become confused and it was important to address this as Government in the future will engage with innovation clusters in geographies that may operate within a sector or cut across multiple sectors Innovation often cuts across sectors so that groups of businesses in different sectors may have synergy in certain areas such as skills, knowledge or finance. The latter being particularly relevant it is an area where the UK performs well. However, the provision of funding for innovation is unbalanced across the country and the UK is ranked 4th in the world for technical finance, London alone is accountable for 50% of inward investment. More locally the North West only received 5% which is mainly targeted at Manchester. Lancashire needs to challenge that position.


Rick highlighted that the Morecambe Bay cluster had the advantage of being located close to a university which could provide valuable support and act as a coordinator. In the past administrative boundaries had presented an obstacle to working collaboratively. Innovation should not stop at the Lancashire boundary and with this in mind discussions are underway with the North West business leadership team and various organisations in North Manchester with regard to future collaboration.


Presentation 3 – Richard Lydon, Materials Consultant.


Richard focussed on the importance of clusters, especially in areas that would cut across different sectors/segments, such as chemicals, paints and pigments.


As with previous speakers he referred to the significant investment and development around innovation in Manchester, the lack of coordination between projects elsewhere and the need for Lancashire to increase its visibility if it was to be able to compete in the future. He suggested that the aim should be to raise the profile of Lancashire and create a materials powerhouse which would act as a focal point and platform for the future and make  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.


IER (Independent Economic Review) Innovation Chapter review pdf icon PDF 102 KB

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Maya Ellis, the Innovation and Digital Lead, updated the Board on a draft innovation chapter for inclusion in the Independent Economic Review for Lancashire and invited any critical additions or comments to be shared from board members by email. Maya suggested that the chapter provided a good starting point to develop the next iteration of the Lancashire Innovation Plan and suggested that arrangements could be made for an informal workshop with Board members to kick-start this process.




1.  That Board members submit any initial comments they may have on the draft innovation chapter for the Independent Economic Review to Maya Ellis for consideration.


2.  That arrangements be made for Board members to have an informal workshop to look at developing the chapter into the basis of a refreshed Lancashire Innovation Plan.


General activity update pdf icon PDF 13 KB

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Maya Ellis, Innovation and Digital Lead presented a report which updated the Board on various activities associated with the Lancashire Innovation Plan actions list and reported that a dedicated full time position would be created within the Economic Development Team at the County Council to support innovation related marketing across Lancashire, particularly with regard to the Innovation Festival and the Ambassador Programme.


Resolved: That the updates on activity associated with the Lancashire Innovation Plan action plan, as set out in the Appendix to the report presented, are noted.


Any Other Business


No items of business were raised under this heading.


Date of Next Meeting

The next scheduled meeting of the Innovation Board will be held at 10.30am on the 6th September, 2021, either remotely via Zoom or at a venue to be arranged.


It was noted that the next scheduled meeting of the Board would be held between 10.30am and 12.30pm on the 6th September, 2021, either remotely or at a venue to be arranged.