BRADFORD’S Liberal Democrats have cast a critical eye over the Council’s launch of the city’s economic vision suggesting it has “all happened before”.

Lib Dem leader Councillor Jeanette Sunderland was referring to Tuesday’s launch of the Bradford Economic Strategy which outlined proposals over the next 12 years to increase Bradford’s economy by £4 billion to £14 billion; get 20,000 into work and 48,000 educated to NVQ level three.

The partnership is headed by David Baldwin, former Bradford City FC chief and CEO of Burnley FC.

“In the land of statistics, Bradford is king,” said Lib Dem leader Councillor Jeanette Sunderland.

“We have statistics for absolutely everything and have spent huge sums of money paying consultants. What we need are fewer statistics and more delivery.

“We also have the most 16 to 24-year-olds out of work who need jobs and getting them into work, rather than them being part of the “informal economy” making money in other ways than working. Is this strategy anything new? This all sounds so familiar.”

But the Conservatives were far more optimistic. Deputy Leader of the Conservatives, Councillor John Pennington said: “ I am glad to see David Baldwin, a businessman, on board and welcome him into the fold. The fact he is a businessman rather than a politician is a good thing. He will rattle the saber a bit.”

“I welcome what’s been proposed. I think the plan is achievable though looking at the figures, they are huge, and also 12 years is a long time.

“Another observation is that around the Tyrls site. I would be happy to see that left as an open and green space. We have tried for long enough to get tenants. Let’s just keep it as grass.”

Nick Garthwaite, president of Bradford Chamber of Commerce said the strategy showed an urgency to see the city transform.

He said: “I think it’s important for a city like Bradford to have a vision, to have aspirations on how it wants to change over the next generation, but that vision needs to match the city’s own characteristics.

“A lot of work went into creating the strategy, involving lots of different partners and stakeholders from within the district.

“It features many of the city’s qualities, while highlighting the challenges we face as we strive to become more successful; so it’s a tool that can be used to help market Bradford, while also a guide to help deliver more growth and prosperity in the future.

“We’re pleased to have contributed to the discussions that have helped put the strategy together.”