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Swindon & Wiltshire LEP launches Business Cyber Centre

The Swindon & Wiltshire Local Enterprise Partnership (SWLEP) has announced the launch of a new Business Cyber Centre (BCC) at Greenways Business Park.
By Tim Burghes,
The Swindon & Wiltshire Local Enterprise Partnership (SWLEP) has announced the launch of a new Business Cyber Centre (BCC) at Greenways Business Park, Bellinger Close, Chippenham, opening in Spring 2022.

This will be the UK’s first business-led Cyber Centre. As part of the SWLEP, the BCC is on a mission to make all UK businesses more cyber secure and aims to turn cyber complexity into cyber confidence.

The belief behind the BCC is that cyber security is not an optional extra, it’s a must have and the Centre is dedicated to building a powerful community that can tackle any cyber challenge with confidence. Combining its cyber knowledge and expertise, it will give its customers all the tools they need to power their business forward. 

CEO Paddy Bradley said: “We are an innovative organisation and we’re transforming the future of UK business by making cyber security a catalyst for growth. We are delighted to be able to mobilise these services with the support of government funding”.

DLUHC’s, Minister for Levelling Up, the Union and Constitution, Neil O’Brien MP said: “I’m thrilled that £3.7 million of funding from the Getting Building Fund has helped launch a new Business Cyber Centre at Greenways Business Park.  This project will help the area reach its full economic potential by creating 250 new jobs and creating 1,700 training opportunities in the UK cyber sector. By investing in ambitious local projects like this, we’re levelling up towns and cities, boosting local economies and helping them to build back better from the pandemic.”

DCMS’s Minister for Media, Data, and Digital Infrastructure, Julia Lopez said: "The UK is a global leader in tech and this new Business Cyber Centre in Chippenham will help create jobs and drive innovation. We’ve invested £700,000 to help cyber security businesses tackle barriers to growth and boost digital skills so people across the country can benefit from this golden age in UK tech."

SWLEP Chair, Paul Moorby said: “I am delighted that SWLEP has built a strong, highly skilled, regional partnership to deliver the cyber centre, opening in March 2022. It is designed specifically for SMEs to use as a base to scale up in the £5 billion a year UK cyber market. “

It is a huge partnership - my thanks to University of Bath, Defence Digital, BEIS, DCMS, Nationwide and Zurich and Western Gateway for their valued expertise and ongoing support.”

Andrew Gudgeon, SWLEP Board Director, said of the project: “I have been involved in UK cyber since its formal inception in 2005. In all that time there have been a number of landmark milestones delivered to make the U.K. the safest place in the world to conduct business in cyberspace. This is the first time everyday UK businesses have established their foothold in mutually assuring security and providing the confidence for enterprise to operate across digital pathways.”

The Swindon & Wiltshire Local Enterprise Partnership was awarded £9.7m from the Getting Building Fund (GBF) for a wide-ranging package of projects that will deliver a much-needed boost to the local economy. GBF funds will deliver key science and innovation projects in the cyber, life sciences, environmental and digital technologies sectors. These are new projects that will bring public and private sector investment over the next year, at a critical time for the region as it looks to recover from the impacts of Covid-19. The three projects bring together academic research with industry expertise to drive growth and jobs in the region and build the UK’s knowledge and resilience in these key sectors of the economy. £3.7m has been allocated to the Business Cyber Centre.

This capital funding will be used to refurbish an existing vacant office building within the local area, creating new jobs and opportunities for not only those that will visit and use the building, but also safeguards jobs associated with refurbishment and ongoing maintenance/service activities. Situated close to public transport, the Chippenham train station and the M4, the Centre will also provide high quality conferencing facilities for up to 140 people and specialist cyber training for up to 60 people at any one time. 

The Centre will also be home to the Swindon and Wiltshire Cyber Cluster and will facilitate exclusive networking and contract opportunities for cyber professionals. 

The BCC’s primary objective is to create cyber confidence and support SMEs to grow, and to grow safely. Services to SMEs will be affordable, delivered remotely to meet the expectations of start-up and growing SMEs, and importantly be relevant and current. The Centre will provide a range of services ranging from virtual cyber training to security awareness for cyber-SMEs and micro-businesses, through to specialist courses and cyber career employment opportunities for both young adults, mature learners, and existing cyber professionals/freelancers. Organisations are asked to go to www.bcc.co.uk to register so that they can become part of a cohort to test out products and services before the BCC goes live early next year.