Wakefield in top 20 UK areas for post-recession growth

Latitude distrubtion park, Wakefield
Latitude distrubtion park, Wakefield
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Wakefield was in the top 20 areas for growth in the years following the recession, adding 15.2 per cent value in five years.

Official figures show Wakefield’s gross value added (GVA) rising from £17,030 per head in 2009 to £19,420 in 2013, accountants UHY Hacker Young said.

This placed the West Yorkshire city 19th in the country, ahead of Leeds, Sheffield and Manchester.

The area has been boosted by a vibrant distribution and logistics sector in recent years, with a number of high-profile companies, such as Asda, Argos and TK Maxx, locating operations in Wakefield

North Yorkshire ranked 25th, with 13.9 per cent growth in the period, taking its GVA in the year to December 31 2013 to £19,580.

While Wakefield and North Yorkshire both outperformed the national average for growth - nine per cent - both fell below the national average GVA for 2013 of £20,899.

Leeds saw value of £26,741 per head in 2013, but only saw 5.6 per cent growth from 2009 to 2013.

By contrast, Sheffield was below average in both GVA, which was £20,000 per head in 2013, and growth over the five-year period, adding 6.1 per cent value.

Sheffield-based UHY Hacker Young said that while the most-recent figures showed the city outpaced Leeds in post-recession growth, businesses may still need support to reach its potential.

Partner Andrew Hulse said: “Businesses may not be making the capital expenditure needed into new IT, plant and machinery.

“This is particularly important in Sheffield due to our advanced manufacturing and engineering sectors.”