A NEW specialist facility at Alderley Park is to benefit from more than £5 million of Government funding.

The new Validation Centre of Excellence will focus on innovative diagnostics, bio-markers and complex medicines.

The project will receive £5.05 million from the Government's £900 million Getting Building Fund, which was announced by Prime Minister Boris Johnson in June.

It is hoped that the new facility will help revive the north west's economy following the coronavirus lockdown and further strengthen Alderley Park as a leading research and development site.

Simon Clarke, minister for regional growth and local government, said: “We want to kickstart a green economic recovery across the north west by investing in infrastructure and delivering the jobs and homes that people across the region need."

The investment will capitalise on the success of the Lighthouse Lab at Alderley Park, which is run by the Medicines Discovery Catapult.

It will deliver a new category three bio-safety facility and a national bio-bank for testing of new diagnostics, bio-markers and therapeutics for highly-infectious pathogens – including respiratory viruses such as Covid-19.

The scheme is one of three 'shovel-ready' building projects that were nominated for the cash by the Cheshire and Warrington local enterprise partnership (LEP), with the aim of delivering jobs and boosting skills across the county.

Clare Hayward MBE DL, chairman of the LEP, said: “We are delighted to have been successful with our bid and these three projects will make a significant difference at this challenging time.

"These projects will support our vision of healthy, sustainable and inclusive economic growth and will have an impact on the quality of life, improving infrastructure and creating employment and training opportunities.

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"The contribution from the Getting Building Fund is essential in helping drive the recovery and supports the dynamism in all parts of our economy.”

An all-electric bus fleet depot in Warrington and a drainage tunnel in Chester have also received funding from the scheme.