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Early in 2009, business leaders were led on a Prince’s Seeing Is Believing visit of the Longridge and Shaw Heath Estates in Knutsford by Prince’s Ambassador, Andrew Cornish, who was Airport Managing Director at that time. Although affluence surrounds the Knutsford area, government statistics show that the Longridge and Shaw Heath areas are among the 20% most deprived in the country with rates of unemployment among the worst 16%.
At the time of the visit, Andrew Cornish, Managing Director, said: “Every time I attend a Seeing is Believing visit I learn something new about our local community. This event has yet again highlighted the problems that exist literally a stone's throw away from the Airport and from centres of extreme wealth in nearby Knutsford. All of us should play our part in tackling these problems."
"I actively encourage everyone to do his or her bit. Not only do the people in our community benefit, but there are also definite personal and professional development opportunities for staff and ultimately the Airport should benefit, with young people learning more about the potential opportunities that exist here for them”.
The Longridge & Shaw Heath (Knutsford) Business Support Group was formed with the aim of working in partnership with other agencies and organisations committed to the social and economic development of the area. Member companies provide practical support such as professional expertise and advice, equipment, volunteers, access to facilities and premises.
Member companies include Manchester Airport, Great Places Housing, Bruntwood, Knutsford Academy, JW Lees, Cheshire East Council, Booths, Oliver Valves, The Mere Resort, Tatton Park, Oil Recruitment, Harman Technologies, Cheshire Fire Services, Barclays Bank, Bentley, Kids Allowed, the David Lewis Centre and The Welcome.