Jump to content
House Price Crash Forum
Tired of Waiting

York’S Booming Economy

Recommended Posts

York’s booming economy

Northern light

An ancient city has found a recipe for post-industrial success

Jul 13th 2013 |From the print edition

WITH the right guide, arriving in York is rather like taking a lesson in British history over two millennia. On a walk from the railway station Sir Ron Cooke, a local grandee, points out ancient Roman fortifications, medieval city walls, palatial Tudor houses and the old railway station, built just ten years after Stephenson rode on his Rocket. The tour ends with a 1960s university building, built on the site of one of Henry VIII’s wine cellars.

Yet in their brochures for international investors, published in Chinese as well as English, the city’s authorities choose not to picture any of these things. Instead, they picked the town’s most startlingly modern development: York University’s new Heslington East campus. Its bright buildings, all steel, glass and wood panelling, stand above a lake on greenfield land on the city’s south-eastern fringe—more like Texas than England.

The Heslington campus is just one part of York’s transformation. Twenty years ago the city, as Sir Ron puts it, was “poor, proud and pretty”. Its local economy was still dominated by Victorian industries: railways (the city had a large carriage works) and chocolate (the Rowntree factory—now owned by Nestlé—is in York). Both were in relative decline. The carriage works closed in 1996; smaller rail companies followed over the next decade. Terry’s, the other chocolate firm manufacturing in York, closed its factory and exported production overseas in 2005.

Yet whereas other northern manufacturing towns have struggled with industrial decline, York is thriving. Its employment rate is 78%, compared with 71% nationally. Growth has come in the right sort of jobs, too: wages have climbed faster than the national average (which is buoyed up by London) over the past decade. It is, as Danny Dorling, a demographer at the University of Sheffield, puts it, a chunk of the affluent south east dropped in Yorkshire.

Several pillars support York’s economic success. Most important is its sheer attractiveness. Some 7m visitors come to the city (population 200,000) each year. Its heritage creates tourism jobs, but it also attracts footloose, well-educated workers. It helps that York is easy to get to. George Hudson, a Victorian railway promoter, got his wish to “make all t’railways come to York”: today 35 trains run daily to London, getting there in under two hours—the fastest link any northern city has with the capital.

But York is no commuter town, as other Roman cities such as Chester and Winchester have become. It supports several industries of its own. Nestlé still has its manufacturing plant there, but it has also recently added more research and development jobs too. Aviva, a big insurer, has an office. Hiscox, another insurer, intends to open a new office next year. Smaller firms also abound, such as Revolution Software, the developer of the Broken Sword series of adventure video games.

The vitality is helped along by two universities, York and York St John. These have both expanded rapidly in recent years: they now have some 22,000 students between them. Students bring money and highly-paid academics. Many stay in the city after graduating—some 41% of the population has degree-level qualifications, against just 29% in Yorkshire and the Humber. The universities also incubate new businesses. York’s Heslington campus has cheap office space for start-ups: new firms pay no rent for three months. That is helping to create a growing cluster of tech firms.

Perhaps the most unusual force for change in York is the city’s new council leadership, which is embracing growth in a way that few in similarly attractive bits of Britain dare. Historically, the city council has been fiercely hostile to new building, says Andrew Lindsay, a lawyer. He once saw a local councillor claim that “York doesn’t need more jobs.”

This changed in 2011, when the Liberal Democrat administration was replaced by a new Labour one, which is more open to new business. James Alexander, the city’s council leader, wants to build around 1,100 new houses a year over the next decade—a rate of construction comparable to fast-growing Milton Keynes. These will be built on green-belt land if needs be. The council has already approved a big extension to an out-of-town shopping centre, Monks Cross. Katie Stewart, an American immigrant who serves as the council’s economic development officer, sees a whole new business district rising up on land near the railway station.

The houses of York

If development is done badly it could dent the city’s beauty—and so weaken its appeal to businesses. Charles Cecil, one of the founders of Revolution Games, is already furious at the decision to allow Monks Cross. Homeowners are unlikely to like thousands of new houses shooting up.

Yet the greater risk is not that growth will destroy the city but that the city squanders its chance for growth. York has everything that a city needs to succeed in Britain: good schools, nice housing and a cluster of educated, middle-class professionals. It is close enough to London for business to thrive, without being so close as to be swallowed up by it. More so than similarly pretty places like Oxford and Cambridge, York wants to be bigger and more important, not a chocolate-box city with no chocolate factories. Despite its appearances, the city has never been a museum. It sits on the ruins of the past, be they Roman brick or Brutalist concrete.

20130713_BRP002_0.jpg

Now add some skyscrapers

Link: http://www.economist.com/news/britain/21581722-ancient-city-has-found-recipe-post-industrial-success-northern-light

IMHO lower property costs help them. Imagine how much more competitive Britain would be if property costs were lower in London/South/SE/SW as well, both residential and business premisses.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yep, students bring money alright...most of it 30 years of debt worth.

and Government pays for those highly paid lecturers.

In other words....Communism pays....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yep, students bring money alright...most of it 30 years of debt worth.

and Government pays for those highly paid lecturers.

In other words....Communism pays....

I think you didn't read the whole article. For instance:

But York is no commuter town, as other Roman cities such as Chester and Winchester have become. It supports several industries of its own. Nestlé still has its manufacturing plant there, but it has also recently added more research and development jobs too. Aviva, a big insurer, has an office. Hiscox, another insurer, intends to open a new office next year. Smaller firms also abound, such as Revolution Software, the developer of the Broken Sword series of adventure video games.

But more importantly, the article indicates the most probable causes for this success, and housing and planning are amongst them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think you didn't read the whole article. For instance:

But more importantly, the article indicates the most probable causes for this success, and housing and planning are amongst them.

yep, insurance...another wealthless industry....sucking money from people....Insurance...a bet on an outcome not happening. It does have its uses though.

Agreed, ALL high costs work against production...thats why the jobs are going to China, where costs are low for labour, where the Green tax is non existent, and they lie about their wealth....still, as an example to us all, they DID build several cities with no inhabitants at all.

I dont think it is housing per se, that is the issue...Its the FINANCIALISATION of the housing that is the problem...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

yep, insurance...another wealthless industry....sucking money from people....Insurance...a bet on an outcome not happening. It does have its uses though.

Agreed, ALL high costs work against production...thats why the jobs are going to China, where costs are low for labour, where the Green tax is non existent, and they lie about their wealth....still, as an example to us all, they DID build several cities with no inhabitants at all.

I dont think it is housing per se, that is the issue...Its the FINANCIALISATION of the housing that is the problem...

"Insurance" was just example, amongst many, that's why I wrote "for instance". Besides, as you correctly pointed out, it does have its uses.

Re international competition: Exactly, all costs are important, as all advantages (political stability, infrastructure [properties included], labour force education, etc.). We do have many advantages, but property costs are one of our weakest links. Our rentier classes leech way too much from our productive sectors, seriously harming its international competitiveness.

Re. housing: It is both, financialisation and a shortage - historical. See below.

(BTW, take a look at China.)

http://shrinkthatfootprint.com/how-big-is-a-house

Percapita.gif

Edited by Tired of Waiting

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

and Government pays for those highly paid lecturers.

Rather less than it used to. HEFCE will pay £2.3 billion towards teaching in 2013-2014, 0.9 billion less than the previous year, and this sum will continue to taper down as the students funded under the old arrangements leave universities.

Why do you think tuition fees are now normally £9,000 a year?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rather less than it used to. HEFCE will pay £2.3 billion towards teaching in 2013-2014, 0.9 billion less than the previous year, and this sum will continue to taper down as the students funded under the old arrangements leave universities.

Why do you think tuition fees are now normally £9,000 a year?

"Highly paid" Lecturers. Might be compared to the average salary in York, but seeing the debate on MP salaries I doubt that "highly paid" is appropriate as the lecturer-payscale starts at 32k and goes up to 56k. And to be appointed you need a PhD and several years of postdoctoral positions preferentially abroad and at relatively low pay.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yep, students bring money alright...most of it 30 years of debt worth.

and Government pays for those highly paid lecturers.

In other words....Communism pays....

Indeed you look at the likes of York and realise the apparent affluence is leached on the likes of university loans which will be never repaid or an insurance industry that feeds off the fear of parasitic insurance claims, certainly if my Professional Indemnity goes up any higher I am bloody well out of it and unproductive.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rather less than it used to. HEFCE will pay £2.3 billion towards teaching in 2013-2014, 0.9 billion less than the previous year, and this sum will continue to taper down as the students funded under the old arrangements leave universities.

Why do you think tuition fees are now normally £9,000 a year?

just remind us who funds and backs the Student Loans Company?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Highly paid" Lecturers. Might be compared to the average salary in York, but seeing the debate on MP salaries I doubt that "highly paid" is appropriate as the lecturer-payscale starts at 32k and goes up to 56k. And to be appointed you need a PhD and several years of postdoctoral positions preferentially abroad and at relatively low pay.

yeah, all lecturers are that qualified.....my daughters lecturers were mostly straight out of Uni...still had acne some of them...then theres the army of admin, the shiny new buildings, the race to build student accomodation.....all in prime locations and based on a 50% attendance.

not forgetting the Dean scandals of 300K plus for part time.

Edited by Bloo Loo

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

yeah, all lecturers are that qualified.....my daughters lecturers were mostly straight out of Uni...still had acne some of them...then theres the army of admin, the shiny new buildings, the race to build student accomodation.....all in prime locations and based on a 50% attendance.

not forgetting the Dean scandals of 300K plus for part time.

Its a good job that it isn't actually real debt, and the taxpayer will have to eventually foot most of the bill as far as the students are concerned.

Who would really pay £9,000 per year for a term that starts in October, finishes in April, a couple of lectures a week for a Mickey Mouse degree like Human Geography. But a three year holiday camp does have its appeal when you know the taxpayer is under-writting your fees. To Blairite parents it is a human right and right of passage for their kids, f**k the cost and sod the taxpayer.

Edited by crashmonitor

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just to balance this out 'some' lecturers are overpaid. Some however, although they may teach for a few months a year, do contribute important research.

Not withstanding the benefits to research and indeed the massive affluence it brings to University cities such as York and debt fuelled GDP to UK plc. , I do wonder whether some of the spending would be better shifted to other forms of higher education such as apprenticeships. We want our kids to have fun for three years, but it is debatable if we can really afford this level of indulgence. Wouldn't it be more use if they were actually apprenticed to a job via public subsidy.

Edited by crashmonitor

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Highly paid" Lecturers. Might be compared to the average salary in York, but seeing the debate on MP salaries I doubt that "highly paid" is appropriate as the lecturer-payscale starts at 32k and goes up to 56k. And to be appointed you need a PhD and several years of postdoctoral positions preferentially abroad and at relatively low pay.

Makes them worth it then......not saying they are not, only saying a dedicated carer looking after patients with dementia, wiping bottoms and working long hours is worth far less.....not in the eyes of some, but yes in the eyes of many. ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Now write another article about Bradford, Wakefield or Huddersfield, though in the case of the latter they are leveraging the University bubble to a certain extent.

The textile industry has contracted considerably and what remains has gone high tech and gone upmarket, but apart from that you get an overwhelming sense that we are reverting to a third world economy based on take aways, gym's, dance studio's and hand car washes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
James Alexander, the city's council leader, wants to build around 1,100 new houses a year over the next decade—a rate of construction comparable to fast-growing Milton Keynes.

I've linked to a particular video on a few occasions which he uploaded to his YouTube account. To remind people of the vulgar propaganda they lapped up as they cheered Labour into Government in 1997, where they threw the parties for the trendy crowd in no.10, then soon go reckless with the spending and thus HPI and spend all the future, at expense of tomorrow's younger people.

He may have just uploaded the video as some reminder of what is bad Labour. He's only 31, and from a humble background, so may be more accutely aware of the unfairness with housing for younger people, but still has socialist leanings. Sometimes ok if such leanings are genuine, but imo too often a front for labour/socialist leaders wanting to improve their own lot the very most. Have to see if he can get his house-building past the nimbys.

http://time4change.w...ress.com/about/

http://www.yorkpress...ion_for_future/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

yeah, all lecturers are that qualified.....my daughters lecturers were mostly straight out of Uni...still had acne some of them...then theres the army of admin, the shiny new buildings, the race to build student accomodation.....all in prime locations and based on a 50% attendance.

not forgetting the Dean scandals of 300K plus for part time.

What sort of university has lecturers like this!?

A problem with universities is the 'admin' staff though. They outnumber academic staff by a long stretch and certainly do not get paid peanuts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What sort of university has lecturers like this!?

A problem with universities is the 'admin' staff though. They outnumber academic staff by a long stretch and certainly do not get paid peanuts.

I wont name names, but it is near Newark and has a Biscuit named after it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

http://www.rightmove...l?premiumA=true

And this is the best (and possibly smallest) pub in the world. It is just like sitting in someone's front room. The Wellington, Alma Terrace.

2603709_a3b4c18f.jpg

according to Guiness book of records the smallest pub is in Bury St Edmunds

The Nutshell, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk. Britain's smallest pub measuring just 5 metres by 2 metres (16.5 ft by 6.5 ft), according to the Guinness Book of Records.[7] The pub, a timber-framed Grade II listed building, has been in existence since 1867.[8] In 1984, a record 102 people squeezed inside.[9]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

York's population has grown extremely rapidly over the last 30 years in % terms, with many relocating there from the affluent south. Indeed it has grown by fully 1/3 since 1971 (from 155k to 202k). This has led to a vibrant property market and the credit that flows into the local economy as a result that helps all boats to rise (like London itself).

And again, like London (and unlike many northern cities like Hull), the population is on average well educated with a high proportion holding degrees. With such people, it is more likely that new businesses will be started (like CPP) and provide jobs and prosperity in the future. THe campus university has not just exopanded numbers but also developed a science park for drug research mirroring a Cambridge strategy.

Its story is a precarious one though, relying as it does on public sector/education spending as with many towns. Read the relevant section in the wiki to see that the main 'exporting' sectors for the economy have very much altered and that a lot of employment is in relatively low value tourist type jobs.

In case you missed this thread from last month. http://www.housepricecrash.co.uk/forum/index.php?showtopic=191296

I don't know much about York so take my bearings from a range of people who do. Obviously all areas have certain problems, and it's the wider view I'm interested in.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Now write another article about Bradford, Wakefield or Huddersfield, though in the case of the latter they are leveraging the University bubble to a certain extent.

The textile industry has contracted considerably and what remains has gone high tech and gone upmarket, but apart from that you get an overwhelming sense that we are reverting to a third world economy based on take aways, gym's, dance studio's and hand car washes.

Don't forget mini-cabbing and security work. I would say we are at second world status in many parts, only held up by large internal transfers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just been watching Peep Show - fantastic line from Jezza

He's a creative, I'm a creative. We don't make steam engines out of pig iron in this country anymore. We hang out, we ****** around on the Playstation, we have some Ben & Jerry's, that's how everyone makes their money now.
Edited by oldsport

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I read the paper version of this on Saturday. I wondered who was spinning a line.

York was a very blue collar city.

You can think of York as being a Northern Swindon with a nice minster and Roman wall.

York has lost a the majority of those jobs - food processing/sugar beet, sweeties, carriages works.

There was a plan that these would be replaced by services, however Avviva/Ga that was is stripped, CPP the laughable bank card scamter has been found out is probably going to fold in the next few weeks. You have odds +sods like Minster Law, a few regional accountants and law firms - all trying to merge with each other at the mo.

The Uni is expanding. I don't that adds a huge deal to the York economy. The money does not leach out that much - just beers in towns.

York, probably more so than other cities, depends on tax credits and housing benefits - 16 hours in a cafe, state tops you up to 25K Kerching!

Come the end of family tax credit, come the end of York's economy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • 246 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.