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  • Peel Ports chief to head up drive to promote town

    Henry James

    MARK Whitworth, chief executive of Peel Ports and chair of West Lancashire College, has been appointed as new chair of the Skelmersdale Place Board and will lead the Skelmersdale Ambassadors into 2019.

    The Place Board is made up of key leaders from business and public sector organisations, who provide a strategic view, approach and leadership for the promotion and development of the town .

    Meanwhile bosses at West Lancs Council have welcomed the appointment saying that Mark’s expertise and leadership qualities will be “invaluable” in supporting and promoting Skelmersdale and he will work closely with fellow Place Board members and Ambassadors to help raise the profile of the town and borough.

    The authority has announced ambitious plans for Skelmersdale with the space to grow its population and business base to ensure the borough is well placed to attract new business opportunities.

    Commenting on his new role Mark said: “I am very much looking forward to working with both the Place Board and Ambassadors to help promote Skelmersdale as a great place for business and to help generate further investment to the area.

    “Skelmersdale is on the doorstep of a phenomenal catalyst for growth and is well-placed to capitalise on those new opportunities, particularly being in such close proximity to the Port of Liverpool (Liverpool 2).

    “I am delighted to be a part of Skelmersdale’s exciting future.”


    The timing of Mark’s appointment is considered by the council to be “pivotal” to Skelmersdale’s growth plans, including the regeneration of the town centre and proposed new rail link and station, which will they believe be the ‘growth game changer’ to benefit the area and wider Lancashire/North West economy.

    Steve Jones, who is stepping down as Place Board chair, said: “I feel honoured to have been chair of the Skelmersdale Place Board during its formative phase and I am confident that Mark will bring the energy and drive that will help Skelmersdale reach its potential.

    “I’m delighted to hand over the reins to Mark who in his current role at West Lancashire College shows his passion for the area and sees the potential of the skills and talent that we have here, as well as the potential for expanding and growing our businesses.”

    Councillor Ian Moran, leader of West Lancashire Borough Council, added: “I wish to congratulate Mark on becoming the new chair of the Skelmersdale Place Board. It is great to see this initiative, originally initiated by the borough council, gathering its own momentum and being driven forward by business leaders.”

    Mark will start his role as chair by hosting an exclusive event to meet the Skelmersdale Ambassadors who have already committed to join the network on Thursday, February 28.

    Local businesses who would like to be a part of this growing movement of ‘influential group’ of business leaders, who are committed to the area and have the know-how to drive change, are being invited to join. Skelmersdale Ambassadors provides an opportunity for every organisation whatever their size to get involved. For further information visit: www.letstalkskelmersdale.com/ambassadors/.

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