I am supporting Crawley’s bid for city status in the Civic Honours Competition for 2022, which is being held to mark HM the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.
Next year heralds the 75th
anniversary of the designation of Crawley as a new town, which confirmed that Three Bridges, Ifield and the small market town of Crawley would be brought together as one community.
Crawley has continued to progress throughout the Queen’s reign. Our town was first visited by Princess Elizabeth in 1950, when she was heir to the throne, to officially open Manor Royal.
The Borough has continued to go forward over the last three quarters of a century and city status can help us over the next 75 years.
This is an issue I raised in Parliament in 2017 and I look forward to highlighting Crawley’s multitude of reasons for bidding with the Government.
Crawley is the economic heart of the Gatwick Diamond with a reach far beyond the Borough boundaries. Before the Covid-19 pandemic Crawley contributed over a quarter of West Sussex’s economic output, despite being just two per cent of the landmass. Prior to the pandemic, the number of jobs in Crawley had also grown to reach a record 101,000, the second highest job density nationally outside central London.
Studies suggest that a successful bid for city status has the potential to bring further investment and employment opportunities. Indeed, newly created cities have a tendency to outperform other areas with regard to economic performance; through factors including increased investment and additional employment opportunities.
With Gatwick Airport and our rail and active travel links, Crawley is an important tourist hub, with more than 45 million visitors entering the town annually prior to Covid-19.
We should not forget that we are an important destination for many. The Hawth, Tilgate Park, Crawley Town FC, County Mall and K2 bring in people to our town from near and far.
Crawley Borough Council are running a consultation to see the views of local residents which is open until 18th
November. Click here
to take part and feel free to send any submission to me via this address: [email protected]
The closing date for bids for city status is 8th
December with the Government expected to announce the winners early next year.
As depicted in our Borough’s coat of arms, Crawley’s motto is “I Grow and I Rejoice” – an appropriate way to describe our community and one which will continue to be fulfilled with the granting of city status.
To keep up to date with my work standing up for Crawley please visit: www.henrysmith.info/news
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With my best wishes