Swindon | where industrial heritage meets innovation

Swindon - Bridgehead

Swindon, the beating heart of innovation and economic vitality in Wiltshire! As the largest town in the county and one of Europe’s fastest-growing cities, Swindon boasts a rich industrial heritage thanks to the Great Western Railway. Today, it has a thriving modern economy that continues to attract businesses and entrepreneurs alike.

Economic Vibrancy

With a population of approximately 235,657 (2022), Swindon’s workforce is a powerhouse of productivity, with a Gross Value Added (GVA) of over £27,500 per head. Swindon’s economic resilience surpasses national and regional averages, making it an ideal destination for businesses seeking growth. [1]

Today, industry in Swindon is diverse and the main sectors are car manufacturing, insurance, hi-tech companies, banking and building societies, engineering, pharmaceuticals and food distribution.

Swindon and Wiltshire LEP have identified six key sectors where existing strengths lie and or future growth can be anticipated. These sectors include: professional business services, creative industries, life sciences, low carbon, advanced manufacturing and engineering, and ICT/cyber security. 

Strategic Infrastructure Investment

Swindon is located on the M4 Corridor and the Great Western Railway Main Line, providing excellent transport links.

Swindon has strong outward connections with access to five major cities, numerous international transport hubs. In recent years, over £150m has been invested in major upgrades of key motorway junctions and roads to create extra capacity before thousands of new homes were built to the east and south of the Borough.

Education and Innovation

In higher education, Swindon has two sixth form colleges, Swindon is home to Oxford Brookes university’s Ferndale campus.

Championing Sustainability

While Swindon Borough Council hasn’t officially declared a climate emergency, it has set ambitious goals to achieve net zero emissions by 2030 and by 2050 as a borough. Strong political leadership is evident in the dedicated ‘Climate Change, Finance and Commercialisation’ portfolio, supported by a council advisory group. 

Businesses can access free carbon-saving advice and grant funding is available from Target 2030, a Government initiative offering eligible SMEs across Swindon a free energy survey and grants of up to £60,000 for energy-saving improvements.

Innovation Hub for Entrepreneurs

Swindon has a dynamic business ecosystem with a mix of large corporations and thriving SMEs. The town is known for its innovation and has been dubbed one of the most innovative and knowledge-intensive places in the UK. In 2017, there were 375 scaleups in the Swindon and Wiltshire LEP.

Support for Local Businesses

Swindon and Wiltshire Growth Hub helps on a broad range of services and offer expert, one-to-one and peer-to-peer business support, events, specialist programmes, resources and access to funding.

techSPARK is a not-for-profit growth network based in Bristol & Bath, which also strengthens the tech community from Swindon to Swansea. They work to spark new ideas and collaborations, facilitate knowledge exchange and upskill. They support tech startups, scaleups, and talent who want to grow.

The Enterprise Network (TEN): Led by Wiltshire Council, TEN nurtures new and growing businesses in Wiltshire, including Swindon. They attract funding from the UK Government and the EU, and partner with a number of local and national initiatives. They have helped over 600 new businesses with their launch and a further 1500 existing businesses have received expert support and advice.

Wiltshire Chamber of Commerce connects businesses from the county and works in  partnership with charities, the public sector and Government to help grow your business. They organise networking events as well as training and support services.

Success Stories

WHSmith the retail chain owns over 600 stores on the high street across the UK and another 800+ travel stores at airports, train stations, hospitals, workplaces and motorway services. Globally, they have stores in airports across Australia, South East Asia, India and the Middle East. They currently have three head offices, London, Sydney and are headquartered in Swindon.

The National Trust is a UK charity and membership organisation for heritage conservation in England, Wales and Northern Ireland has its head office in Swindon. The Trust was founded in 1895 and has 5.37 million members, over 50,000 volunteers and 10,000 staff – making it the biggest conservation charity in Europe.

Nationwide is said to be the largest building society in the world. The company has over 15 million members and its head office in Swindon. Nationwide was founded in 1884 and has grown from a small mutual auto insurer to one of the largest insurance and financial companies in the world. 

Why Choose Swindon?

Swindon’s thriving economy, strategic position, and business-friendly atmosphere make it the ideal destination for companies seeking success in today’s competitive market. Whether in professional services, creative industries, life sciences, low carbon, advanced manufacturing and engineering, or ICT and cyber security, Swindon offers unparalleled opportunities for growth and innovation.


[1]  https://www.totalswindon.com/jobs/swindons-economic-stats/