Northampton is the UK's number one town for creating new businesses, a report by a chartered accountant has claimed.
The study shows that Northampton has 43 new businesses per 10,000 population. The UK average is 12 and London comes in at 42.
The report states that “Northampton is benefitting from its position as one of the UK’s leading centres for the advanced manufacturing sector, particularly those specialising in the automotive industry”.
Cosworth and GE Precision Engineering were identified as major employers in the sector, alongside Northampton’s proximity to Silverstone Park.
Colin Jones, partner at UHY Hacker Young which compiled the report, said: “The UK’s automotive industry used to be an international joke – now Northampton’s advanced automotive cluster is a leading location for hi-tech engineering.
“This has allowed Northampton to power ahead of the rest of the UK for new business creation.
“High rents are driving many firms out of London and the South-East. Northampton’s position within the UK, as well as local efforts to entice business growth, make moving or starting up there an exciting prospect for many business owners.
“For companies with activities across the UK, the area is a strong choice for a headquarters location, due to the easy access to many of the UK’s main economic hubs," he added.
The report also identified Northampton’s central location within the UK and excellent transport links as major strengths for opening up both national and international trade.
Cabinet member for Regeneration, enterprise and planning, Councillor Tim Hadland said: “This new report is yet more evidence that Northampton is a great place for people to come to start or grow a business.
“As a council, we are very proud of our town’s growth and prosperity. Our Waterside Enterprise Zone, Alive regeneration programme and Business Incentive schemes demonstrate our commitment to business.
"We aim to make expansion and investment as simple as possible, and we look forward to welcoming more businesses who want to share in our ambition for the town. I’d encourage everyone to come and find out what Northampton has to offer.”