New report identifies critical interventions needed to cultivate Hertfordshire’s growing cell and gene therapy cluster

30 Jul 21

A new report commissioned by Hertfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership sets out how the county’s burgeoning and globally significant cell and gene therapy cluster, centred around Stevenage, can sustain its momentum and be a catalyst for UK life sciences growth.

Located on GSK’s life sciences campus on Gunnels Wood Road, with Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst and the Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult at its heart, it is both the UK’s largest cluster of cell and gene therapy companies and the third largest cluster globally.

The companies within it have attracted private sector equity investment totalling over £739m, with investment in R&D activities linked to biotechnology higher in Stevenage in 2020 than for clusters in Cambridge and London.

With Stevenage’s cluster going from strength to strength and poised for further growth, the new report was commissioned by Hertfordshire LEP to examine existing opportunities and threats and provide evidence on which to base a Sector Action Plan that will chart a route forward.

Produced by SQW, the report provides an overview of life sciences in Hertfordshire and the key factors that have led to the development and growth of the cell and gene therapy cluster over time, including the role of big pharma, the availability of a skilled workforce, major locational advantages and a targeted series of interventions and investments.

The report also explores the cluster’s current limitations and barriers to growth, and sets out a range of critical interventions needed to support the LEP’s ambition to further entrench Stevenage as the premier destination for cell and gene therapy in the country and drive future expansion.

Read the report: Hertfordshire’s Cell and Gene Therapy Cluster 2021

The Cell and Gene Therapy Sector Action Plan that will emerge following the publication of this report will form part of a suite of strategic statements spearheaded by the LEP and its partners, to set the course for Hertfordshire’s economic recovery. These include: