TATTON Estate and Manchester Metropolitan University are joining forces to create a major new addition to the Liverpool-Manchester science corridor.

They are to unveil plans in Cannes this week to create a multi-million pound 3D printing facility between Altrincham and Knutsford and close to Manchester Airport.

The two parties will sign a Memorandum of Understanding at MIPIM - Le marché international des professionnels de l’immobilier - on Thursday, March 15, to create jointly the Cheshire 3D Print Hub (C3D).

Tatton Estate is represented by the Tatton Group, which is part of the Cheshire and Warrington delegation attending MIPIM.

The event attracts property professionals from 90 countries and is used by cities and regions to promote regeneration opportunities and attract investment.

It is anticipated C3D will deliver an initial £6 million investment in the north west, located on the Tatton Estate’s Yarwood Heath Farm, part of its Cheshire Gateway scheme.

It will comprise 40,000 square feet of existing buildings accessed from junction 7 of the M56 and the new Knutsford-Bowdon A556 dual carriageway.

C3D will also provide grow-on incubation space to accommodate the emerging north west industrial digital technologies market and supplement Manchester Met’s central Manchester Print City® facilities.

C3D will enable the implementation of advanced digital technologies in design, manufacture - 3D printing/additive and advanced manufacturing - and service support.

Henry Brooks, Tatton Group managing director, said: “C3D is a very exciting prospect, regionally, nationally and internationally.

“It will help contribute to the global imperative for the UK and the north west to increase manufacturing, to create wealth, jobs and social cohesion.

“It will also become an integral part of Cheshire’s international corridor of science and innovation which has some of the most significant science-based assets in the north of England, some of which are of global importance.

“Sitting at the geographical heart of the UK, Cheshire Gateway already boasts fantastic connectivity to all major cities via train, which will be yet further fed by the HS2 hub stations at Crewe and Manchester Airport, where it is expected to connect to Northern Powerhouse rail, connecting C3D to the global community.

"We are only repurposing the existing derelict buildings on a site that clearly is no longer usable as an active farm having lost so much of it to motorway development." 

Tatton Estate will support other science and technology businesses to occupy parts of the Yarwood Heath Farm site to create critical mass and foster industry collaboration, in line with the opportunities presented with Industry 4.0 whilst supporting jobs and growth within the local economy.

Professor Craig Banks, personal chairman in Electrochemical and Nanotechnology at Manchester Met and Faculty of Science and Engineering lead for Research and Knowledge Exchange, said: “The long-term ambition of the project is to create an open and inclusive science and technology hub.

“It will enhance our research and innovation infrastructure and capacities to develop excellence and promote business investment, including for SMEs.

“The collaboration between Tatton Estate and Manchester Met will also form academic partnerships, using research knowledge to drive commercial growth.”