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Rise in number of new businesses as 617 companies register in town
Watford has seen an increase in the number of new businesses opening during the first half of this year, according to new figures.
Statistics from Companies House show 617 new companies registered in the town between January and June.
In the same time last year 585 new companies opened, meaning this there was 5.5 per cent growth in the number of businesses.
According to the figures Bushey also saw growth in the number of companies opening whereas Rickmansworth saw a decline this year.
The Watford figures have been welcomed by the town’s MP, Richard Harrington , who said recent developments such as the Croxley Rail Link and the Warner Brothers film studio, in Leavesden, have made the town a more attractive place to do business.
He said: "These figures are very encouraging. Watford is a town of over 3,000 small businesses and has always been a great place to do business due to its proximity to London, local facilities and the number of large national and international companies already based here.
"With recent developments with the Croxley Rail Link and the new Warner Bros. Studios in Leavesden, Watford really is a great place to do business. Things have been difficult for businesses over the last few years but this increase suggests a growing confidence for businesses.
"This shows a real message that Watford is open for business. This is great news for the local economy and is likely to create hundreds more jobs."
Since funding for the Croxley Rail Link, which will see the Metropolitan Line routed through the town to Watford Junction , was announced there has been a number of large commercial developments announced for the town.
In West Watford, Morrisons announced plans to open a large store near where one of the new Metropolian Line stations will open in Ascot Road.
However the figures from Companies House did not show how many businesses have closed in the town in 2012.
Over the last years’ recession Watford has lost some national high street brands such as Peacocks, which closed after opening in the same town centre unit where Woolworths used to be.
Some major companies headquartered in the town, such as Mothercare, have also announced job losses.
Across the border in Three Rivers, the figures show the number of new businesses opening in Rickmansworth slowed sharply by 27.7 per cent, with 154 companies registering in the first half of this year compared to 213 in the same time last year.
In Hertsmere, Bushey saw a comparatively large increase of 16.5 per cent in new businesses opening, with 253 this year compared to 228 in the first six months of 2011.