A drive to create a nationally significant and sustainable economy around Morecambe Bay is gaining momentum.

The Lancaster and South Cumbria Economic Region sees Barrow, Lancaster and South Lakeland councils working together to build on their collective strengths.

The partnership’s Business Prospectus – created to promote the scheme and act as a catalyst for future joint work – will be launched in Lancaster on Friday.

Northern Powerhouse and Local Growth minister Jake Berry backed the project after the signing of a statement of intent between the authorities in 2017.

The councils agree that working together will build on strengths in areas such as energy, advanced manufacturing, digital technologies, life sciences, health innovation, higher education and the visitor economy could create a nationally and internationally significant economy by encouraging investment, building aspiration and growing local skills to create opportunities which deliver improved productivity, prosperity and inclusive growth for the Northern Powerhouse.

With Barrow, Lancaster and South Lakeland increasing their GVA from the previous year in 2017, the wider Morecambe Bay economic area is the sixth best performing in the North West, and growing, with a combined GVA of £7.074 billion – a rise of £257 million.

Council bosses say the three council areas represent a “rural, world-class functioning economic area” and much of the proposed work builds on co-operation which is already under way.

The prospectus also highlights the area as being a beautiful and safe place to live with city-like benefits of good national transport links, leading universities, world-class restaurants and theatres, and the bonus of having the room for thriving businesses to grow.