Boost for rural science and technology

The launch of a new £1.9 million initiative at University Centre Shrewsbury (UCS) which will support Shropshire businesses was celebrated earlier this year. A special event was held in February to mark the opening of the Centre for Research into Environmental Science and Technology (CREST). The Centre is being created in partnership with University Centre Reaseheath to help environmental science and technology businesses to grow and succeed, after a successful bid for EU funding by UCS.

The event featured a presentation from Dr David Gregory-Kumar, science, environment and rural affairs correspondent for the BBC in the West Midlands, and presenter of BBC Radio 4’s Farming Today programme. Dr Gregory-Kumar says, “For me the importance of a new higher education institution in a rural location can’t be overstated. This new centre will boost that impact further and I hope so much to tackle some of the issues I talked about at the launch.”

CREST is bringing together a range of experts to work with Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) across the county. Support will be provided through research and specialist advice and helping SMEs to develop innovative ideas and products before bringing them to market. CREST will support businesses offering services and products in areas including groundwater; contaminated land; bio fuels and energy; flooding and hydrology; ecology; bioscience; air quality; noise and dust pollution and sustainable/smart housing for rural communities. If your company is interested in gaining support, email Simon Burgess at or Vicki Ayton at



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