Artists impression of the 'Light' cinema now under construction

Businesses encouraged to ‘Meet the Buyer’

Artists impression of the 'Light' cinema now under construction
Artists impression of the ‘Light’ cinema now under construction

Small businesses and sole traders who work in the construction and supply industries are being given the chance to pitch their products and services to developers who are working on three exciting projects in Walsall.

Walsall businesses are being urged to attend Walsall’s third Meet the Buyer event at Walsall College’s Wisemore campus on Thursday 30 April to find out about contracts on offer at the two new leisure centres in Bloxwich and Oak Park and the new cinema and retail development at Walsall Waterfront.

More than 60 local businesses attended the last Meet the Buyer event in November, which centred around the £26m Darlaston highways improvement scheme, the new £11m Business and Sports Hub at the college and the £3.2m HQ for Jhoots Pharmacy.

Construction firm ISG is working with Walsall Council to deliver both leisure centres, which will include a 25 metre eight lane swimming pool, teaching/learner pool, six court sports hall, 100 station fitness suite, dance studio, two squash courts, cafe, artificial turf pitch and additional car parking spaces for each centre.

Both sites are expected to be completed by Summer next year.

Kier Property – through their appointed contractor G F Tomlinson Group – is behind the £12m, eight screen The Light Cinema development, which will provide around 5,000 sq ft of retail and leisure space, including four restaurants, Chiquito, Pizza Express, Bella Italia and Hungry Horse.

Both developers are keen to work with local suppliers and tradespeople to ensure Walsall businesses benefit from each project.

ISG Regional director Jon James, said: “This event is an open invitation to all those high-quality construction trade specialists looking to learn more about the opportunities associated with this key leisure scheme.

“The region has a wealth of skills and expertise that we are looking to deploy on the construction of the Oak Park and Bloxwich leisure centres, and we are determined that the scheme will create a skills legacy that will not only benefit the local economy, but also the wider construction industry.”

Andy Sewards, managing director at G F Tomlinson Group added: “We’re delighted to be involved in such an important regeneration project on Walsall’s Waterfront which is helping to create new job opportunities and grow the local economy. We’re committed to working closely with all stakeholder partners and local people to ensure this new leisure complex development is the best it can be to meet the needs of the local community.”

The event is open to businesses who are already involved in commercial contracts and to those who are interested in moving into this field.

Simon Neilson, Walsall Council’s executive director for economy and environment, said: “It is one of our top priorities to ensure that local businesses and our residents who are self-employed are given the opportunity to work with these key developers to boost the economy in Walsall by creating new and safeguarding existing jobs.

“We want to ensure that every investment we and our partners make into Walsall is an investment in our economic future.”

Local firms will have access to one-to-one business advice and the opportunity to meet with the developers to help businesses grow and access the supply chain.

To find out more and to book your place at the event please visit Eventbrite or contact Andrew Clayton in Walsall Council’s Employment Growth Team on 01922 654468 or