Opinion – The “iceberg economy”

Following the news that Marks and Spencer are to close their store in Church Street our minds turned to thinking about the economy.

The economy is quite a complicated thing, whether you are looking, globally, nationally or locally. But there is something about the local economy that we feel is worth bearing in mind.

The photo accompanying this article is of an iceberg. If you imagine for a moment that the whole iceberg represents the local economy. A large part of it is unseen (the part of the iceberg below the waterline).

Companies on trading estates and business parks doing great work in the UK and globally. Companies like Blue Prism, ATG Access, Davanti, Inovus, Longworth and lots lots more. They exist but you rarely see them, and you’ll likely only hear about them when we write about the great things they are doing.

The bit of the iceberg that’s visible, the bit above the water, we feel represents the local economy as we suspect the vast majority of people see it, and that’s the shops, town centre, church street etc.

You can have all the growth in the economy “below the waterline” those great, but unseen businesses, but that bit above the water, that’s crucial.

It’s the bit that we suspect most residents use to measure the economic success of the Borough. This is something that we feel the economic development team at the Council ought to bear in mind.


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