People asked to give their views to make the Solent stand out

HOVERING cars, jet packs and intelligent communication systems that sit inside your ear are just a few of the things pupils at a Gosport junior school reckon we will see in the Solent area in 2050.

Friday, 3rd May 2019, 6:51 pm
Updated Tuesday, 7th May 2019, 6:29 pm

Pupils from Gomer Junior School were asked their views as part of the Solent Local Enterprise Partnership’s consultation, which is asking people where they see the Solent in the future and what it needs to make it stand out.

The LEP is developing a Local Industrial Strategy in the hope of making the area attractive enough to secure vast amounts of government money to fund major projects.

Stuart Baker, head of local growth at Solent LEP, said these projects could include schemes such as a water taxi service, improved rail lines, better education, new innovation centres and money put into environmental projects.

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He said: ‘We don’t have all the answers at the LEP, which is why we are asking for help. Young people’s brains think differently and we have some major universities in the area with students looking to the future. We also have lots of businesses – both large organisations and SMEs. It is about having a conversation with everybody.’

Brian Johnson, Solent LEP board member, said they’d seen some great ideas so far, but they are appealing for more. He said: ‘We could write what we think is a good industrial strategy but it will travel so much further if we have the evidence that people are engaged with the plan. We will analyse every response. We need to send the message that we are a thriving area but that we could do so much more with some investment.’

A four-question consultation is available online at until May 17. The Solent LEP is also holding workshops at its Lakeside Portsmouth offices on May 20 and at Solent Hotel in Whiteley. on May 28. To get involved go to

Solent LEP is holding a public consulation to form its Local Industrial Strategy