Budget boost for Alconbury Campus

20/03/2014

Businesses locating to the Alconbury Enterprise Zone will benefit from tax incentives for a further three years, under measures announced by the Chancellor in yesterday’s Budget.

This means that businesses moving to Alconbury will benefit from business rate discounts for five years, with the offer extending until March 2018.

The support is being offered as part of the Government’s long-term plan to rebalance the economy, and will help the Alconbury Enterprise Zone achieve its potential as a key driver of the local economy.

Local Growth Minister Kris Hopkins said:

“Alconbury is making great leaps to turn its former RAF base into a business and manufacturing centre that will create jobs and boost the economy across Cambridgeshire.

“Today’s announcement means Alconbury will remain an attractive location for businesses to locate and invest long into the future.

A new incubator, designed to house and grow small innovative new businesses will shortly open on the Zone. With close proximity to Cambridge, the Zone has already captured a University of Cambridge spin-out company, Enval, who have developed an innovative process for recycling plastic laminated material, and is also home to low carbon R&D firms Mole Solutions and Aquavent.

Sitting between the East Coast Mainline, the A1(M) and the A14, Alconbury Enterprise Zone will bring forward up to 3 million square foot of bespoke space for business, between the global innovation hub of Cambridge and the environmental services cluster and manufacturing strengths of Peterborough and Huntingdon. This will deliver an estimated 8000 jobs to the local economy. With plans for a rail station, Guided Busway connection and significant investment in the local road, cycle and pedestrian network, and in ultrafast broadband capacity the site will be one of the most connected in the country. The Enterprise Zone – called Alconbury Campus – is part of the wider development of Alconbury Weald which will also see homes, schools, health services community facilities, along with 700 acres of green space.

Nigel Hugill, Executive Chairman of Urban&Civic, the owner and developer of Alconbury Enterprise Zone, said:

“This is really good news. We have invested £11m in early infrastructure, design and planning, and bringing forward our flagship Incubator building which all helps create a great setting for businesses coming to Alconbury Campus. This additional benefit will help attract more businesses to the site, and help those already here to continue to grow with us.”

Mark Reeve, Chairman of the Greater Cambridge Greater Peterborough Enterprise Partnership (LEP), said:

“We are pleased to hear that the Government has decided to extend business rates relief for companies moving into Enterprise Zones for a further three years until 2018. The recent completion of the Incubator building at Alconbury has cemented the vision for the site, and there have been good levels of interest from a wide range of businesses to date. The extension to the business rates relief scheme will help to support the continued promotion and marketing of Alconbury Enterprise Zone to R&D, tech and manufacturing businesses across the UK and beyond, ensuring that we can deliver a new economic space to support growth and increase resilience across the Greater Cambridge and Greater Peterborough economy.”


Councillor Jason Ablewhite, Executive Leader of Huntingdonshire District Council said:

“This is great news not only for the Enterprise Zone at Alconbury, but also for the whole of Huntingdonshire which is set to benefit from both growth and job creation.  With business rates discounts now being extended until 2018, this will certainly help to ensure that Alconbury Enterprise Zone further enhances its position as a great place to locate your business.”

Long term programme to drive growth

Enterprise Zones are at the centre of the Government’s plan to grow the economy in a balanced way – across a range of industries, creating jobs and getting people into employment.

Since they opened for business in April 2012 Enterprise Zones have laid firm foundations for success, attracting international companies, building centres of excellence in key industries such as automotive, pharmaceuticals and renewable energy that will ensure that Britain continues to be competitive and successful on a global stage.

Further Information:

  • This is a 25 year programme to deliver local growth and jobs through Enterprise Zones.  In their first 18 months, Enterprise Zones have attracted over 250 businesses, created over 7,000 jobs and secured £1.1 billion of private sector investment.
  • The Government is investing £330m in infrastructure to support Enterprise Zones to realise their potential as the engine rooms of local economies. 
  • Local areas will benefit from millions of pounds of taxes generated by the businesses in their Enterprise Zone over the next 25 years.  The money, generated through the 100% business rate retention scheme, can be reinvested in local businesses, jobs and skills and will provide Local Enterprise Partnerships with a guaranteed funding stream.
  • As part of the Budget 2014 the Chancellor announced that the Government will extend the deadline by which businesses need to have located in an Enterprise Zone in order to claim business rates discounts by three years until 31 March 2018.  It will also extend the period in which enhanced capital allowances are available in Enterprise Zones by three years until 31 March 2020.

As an Enterprise Zone, Alconbury Campus can provide:

  • A 100% business rate discount
  • Government and local authority help to develop radically simplified planning approaches
  • Government support to deliver superfast broadband across the Campus.

Urban&Civic are also offering a range of other opportunities, including:

  • A team of internationally renowned architects, consultants and project managers
  • Support in recruiting local people and up-skilling new and existing staff
  • Support and advice on green travel planning
  • A range of local banks, businesses and services
  • Flexible terms and options, and
  • Help, in conjunction with our partners, to access additional support and funding.


The Campus offers a range of business types & sizes including:

  • 250–2,500 sq ft (23–232 sq m): The Incubator: start-ups, grow-ons, R&D, production and offices
  • 5,000–30,000 + sq ft (465–2,787 sq m): bespoke new builds as part of an inspirational streetscape
  • 30,000 – 100,000+ sq ft:  Set in the landscape with space to grow
  • Ready to go: existing buildings ranging from hangars to furnished offices at competitive rates
CGI of Alconbury Enterprise Campus