On Friday 20th November, Seema Malhotra MP joined with West London Business and local councils, universities and businesses to launch a new initiative to support future jobs, reimagining the Heathrow area as a global hub for innovation and a green economy powerhouse. At a virtual conference co-chaired by the Feltham and Heston MP, Seema spoke of the importance of establishing an Innovation District that could become the Silicon Valley of Aviation – providing new opportunities for local people.

Talking to more than 300 representatives from business and academia as well local, national and global leaders, Malhotra used her conference speech to highlight the devastating impact of COVID-19 on Feltham and Heston. Alongside discussing the Government action needed now for increased testing to help get planes flying safely as soon as possible, the conference discussed plans to grow the economy post-COVID. Malhotra stressed the importance of collaboration and fresh thinking to create new jobs and provide opportunities for upskilling and reskilling.

She also emphasised that the scale of the challenge ahead means it’s important to push the boundaries of ambition for how we create future job opportunities for the children of today.

New and emerging technologies will sit at the heart of the planned district, shaping our path to decarbonisation and helping us to become a green economy powerhouse.

With its hub at the CRL accelerator in Hayes, researchers, entrepreneurs and innovators will be able to come together to develop and test new ideas in partnership with major industry, investors and academia leading to the creation of new businesses and future jobs. A skills plan working in partnership with local schools and colleges will also form part of the innovation district’s programme

Plans for the new Innovation District will be taken forward in partnership with local businesses and local leaders over the next six months.

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