05 December 2010

Resources for Inventors in North West England

North West England consists of the counties of Cheshire, Cumbria, Greater Manchester, Lancashire and Merseyside. It includes the Greater Manchester and Merseyside metropolitan areas as well as Blackburn, Blackpool, Burnley, Carlisle, Chester, Lancaster, Preston and Warrington The region covers just under 14,165 square kilometres and has a population of just over 8.85 million.

Regional Development
The North West Regional Development Agency has co-ordinated regional development until now. This agency will be abolished together with the other regional development agencies by March 2012. Proposals have been accepted for local enterprise partnerships for Cheshire and Warrington, Cumbria, Greater Manchester and Liverpool City Region.

Business Link
Business Link North West is based at Brian Johnson Way, Preston, PR2 5PE, Tel 0845 00 66 888. There are local advisers throughout the region.

The Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys usually holds patent clinics in Liverpool and Manchester Central Libraries but both of these libraries are closed for refurbishment. The Manchester clinic has moved temporarily to Manchester City Library at Elliott House, 151 Deansgate and meets every third Thursday. The Liverpool clinic is still looking for a new venue. Blackburn and Darwen Library arrange occasional clinics with local patent agents at Blackburn Central Library on request.

There is an angel network known as North West Business Angels.

There are no less than seven community development finance institutions in North West England:
There are inventors clubs in Blackburn (Ideas North West), Liverpool and Manchester. Like the Liverpool patent clinic, the Liverpool Inventors Club is looking for a temporary home pending the refurbishment of Liverpool Central Library.

There are Patent Information Centres (also known as "PATLib libraries) in Liverpool and Manchester Central Libraries. Both libraries are being refurbished. The Manchester patent library has moved temporarily to City Library at 151 Deansgate. Blackburn Central Library operates an Inventors Information Point with an extensive collection of resources.

Professional Advisers
NIPC was the first and remains the only intellectual property chambers outside London was established in Manchester in 1997. Alex Khan is based in Manchester.

Janet Bray who practises from Hebden Bridge is on our patent attorneys' panel.

Michael Sandys and Joanne Shelley are solicitors specializing in intellectual property.

Michael Swift is a chartered accountant with experience of advising and assisting start-ups.

Jonathan Butters is an experienced product design consultant.

Further Information
We have a page on inventors' resources in North West England on the Inventors Club website
which we shall expand and update as and when we can. We have an Inventors Club group on Linkedin which covers developments affecting inventors throughout the UK. You can of course also join the Inventors Club if you want. The membership rules are here. There is no subscription but we may charge for special services such as showcasing inventions and access to professional services. Anyone who wishes to contact us should call us on 0161 850 0080 or use our online form.