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The Economy of Ross - An Overview
by Adrian Marshall, Head of Economic Development, Herefordshire Council

Set above the River Wye, Ross-on-Wye provides a picturesque setting of a rural idyll, but behind this initial façade lives a vibrant town and business community.

With a population of around 9,000 Ross-on-Wye is a key town in the Herefordshire economy. This stems from its geography positioned on the edge of the county and with road links to the South West, Midlands and South East, Ross has a large sphere of influence. The town boasts well over 500 businesses and investors into Ross come from as far as Germany and Switzerland.

The centre of Ross represents a bustling market town which ranges from the high street plcs to upmarket boutiques. The main industrial activity of Ross is based on the west of the town close to the motorway access, consisting of a number of separate industrial sites, the main ones being Ashburton, Haigh and Alton Court which all benefit significantly from the road access. The town has a good mix of businesses, some indigenous such as Dayla Liquid Packaging Ltd (drinks and packaging manufacturer) and PGL Travel (Tour Operator), as well as international inward investors Rehau Ltd (manufacture of polymer products) and Hagesud Bosse (UK) Ltd (spices and seasonings manufacture)to name but a few.

Unemployment within Ross is 2.27%(1) against 1.8%(2) for the whole of Herefordshire, but remains relatively low compared to 3.5%(3) for the West Midlands as a whole. So the Ross-on-Wye economy has a solid, diverse business core which links well to Hereford and to the motorway network. And with the recent proposal to release 10 hectares of land for employment use at Overross in the draft UDP, there is definite scope for the economy of the town to improve by taking advantage of this development opportunity.

(1) (2) & (3) Office for National Statistics Monthly Unemployment Claimant Counts (NOMIS), July 2002.

©Adrian Marshall, Head of Economic Development for Herefordshire County Council.


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