By Daniel Hunter

Environment Minister Dan Rogerson has announced £1.2 million worth of funding to help a South West company bring 60 new jobs to Torquay.

Gooch & Housego — which designs, manufactures and supplies fibre optic solutions used across the aerospace, defence, industrial, life science and scientific research sectors — will receive the award towards an £18 million expansion project providing a major boost to the region.

The Minister toured the company to see first-hand how the cash from the Regional Growth Fund (RGF) is creating new jobs and boosting growth across the region through investment in their research and development, and production facilities.

Environment Minister Dan Rogerson said:

"This company is a great example of how the Regional Growth Fund is helping to build a stronger, more resilient economy and a fairer society.

"Gooch and Housego will use this £1.2 million investment to grow and create 60 new jobs, no doubt securing long-term success for this ambitious business."

Dr Andrew Robertson, Senior Vice President System Technology Group at Gooch and Housego, said:

"The Regional Growth Fund has enabled us to further strengthen our capabilities in Torbay and facilitate sustainable strategic growth over the next decade and beyond.

"With the ongoing support of the Torbay Development Agency, the fund has allowed us to recruit six new people already and we hope to add thirty more to the team in the coming three years with this number growing to 60 in the next ten. This will allow us to add many new skills to our R&D team, build our talent pool of Photonics Engineers and continue to expand of our production facilities, crucial to securing our long-term growth."

So far, £210 million of Regional Growth Fund (RGF) money has been invested in businesses across the South West, helping to create 36,000 new jobs as companies have committed to investing an additional £700 million.

RGF Round Six, which will make at least £200 million available to companies across England, has just closed with 174 applications totalling more than £800 million. Thirty two bids worth £109 million were received from the South West. Successful bidders will be announced in the New Year.

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