How West Yorkshire’s manufacturing sector is being transformed 

The Mayor of West Yorkshire and the LEP is looking to the future of the region’s manufacturing sector and how local businesses can increase productivity, efficiencies and profits with digital technologies.

21 October 2021

West Yorkshire’s manufacturing sector employs more than 112,000 people – ranking one-third higher than national levels and generates £7.3 billion a year into the local economy. Now, our manufacturing industries are looking at opportunities to develop technology solutions that will shape the future of manufacturing, making things smarter and faster. Joining forces with European partners as part of , an interregional corporation project, the LEP will also learn best practices from across Europe to address common barriers to uptake among SMEs and support new initiatives.

Among the many benefits that investing in technology can offer, at its core, it can help businesses resolve reoccurring issues such as machine downtime, meeting customer demands and issues related to manual tasks. A new support programme for Yorkshire and the Humber will launch later this year to help small and medium-sized manufacturers adopt new digital technologies.  will provide businesses with tailored plans and access to specialist advice, workshops, grant funding, leadership development support and digital technology internships. 

Tracy Brabin, the Mayor of West Yorkshire, wants to take West Yorkshire’s world-class, modern manufacturing sector forward and is working with the West Yorkshire Combined Authority and the LEP to set up a Manufacturing Task Force. The Task Force will bring together business leaders and manufacturing membership bodies to explore more ways to support and build resilient businesses with the skills and capabilities needed for the future economy.

The LEP offers a range of support to manufacturers. Small and medium-sized businesses can access advice and support from the LEP’s Business Support Service to identify opportunities, improve business performance and growth with supply chain support and fast-track innovative, low-carbon and improvement projects with grant support.

If you would like help identifying local and national support and funding, contact the LEP Business Support Service at or visit for more information.