Rotherham records fastest economic growth in Yorkshire

12th November 2018

Rotherham had the fastest growing economy in the Yorkshire region in the second quarter of 2018, but it will struggle in the three months after the scheduled date for leaving the EU - according to a new report published today.

The UK Powerhouse study is produced by Irwin Mitchell and the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) says that year-on-year employment growth in Q2 2018 in Rotherham was 2.3%. During the same period, Leeds recorded 2.1% growth whilst Sheffield was further down the league table with a 1.5% increase in GVA*. It said economic growth in Rotherham has been stimulated recently by a new university campus worth £10.5 million which opened in September 2018, for degrees accredited by Hull University and Sheffield Hallam University. Although the opening occurred in Q3, the construction of the site has been stimulating the local construction industry for the past few quarters. Despite Rotherham's relatively strong performance in Q2 2018, its GVA growth in the three months after the scheduled date of leaving the EU is expected to fall from 2.3% to 1.2%. Sheffield's annual growth in the 12 months to Q2 2019 will stand at 0.7% whilst Leeds will be at 1%. Looking at the region more broadly, the report adds that while Yorkshire presents some important opportunities for long-term growth, much of this appears to be concentrated in cities such as Leeds which are already well-established. This is in contrast to the towns and cities in Southern England where economic activity has seen expansion into other cities in the area, supported by growing transport links. Dorrien Peters partner and Head of Business Legal Services at Irwin Mitchell in Sheffield, said: -These figures reveal that the departure from the EU will coincide with a slowdown in the level of economic growth in South Yorkshire. -The UK will ultimately be responsible for managing and securing its own trade deals and though there are clear opportunities, these will have to be balanced alongside the short term risks which will be realised shortly after the UK's official departure. -One thing that the last decade has taught us is that despite the hugely disruptive force of the financial crisis, the UK economy has been incredibly resilient. "It is vital that we tackle the challenges head on and take advantage of the new opportunities that emerge. -The UK is a global powerhouse and the South Yorkshire region contributes significantly to this. "We need to stay positive and work together to ensure this remains to be the case. The full report can be downloaded from here.

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