Merlin Extended Reach Drilling (Merlin ERD) has become the latest major business to announce its support for Perth to become the next UK City of Culture in 2021.
As an energy industry world leader in extended reach drilling, Merlin ERD is a business that can operate from any location worldwide, opting to set up operations in Perth in 2007 due to its strategic position at the heart of Scotland and its growing cultural identity.
Merlin ERD is successful in attracting highly skilled staff to Scotland and Perth, from as far afield as Australia, Malaysia and Russia and the company believes that their location has been a clear success in attracting the best Drilling Engineering minds.
The company has decided to back Perth as it recognises that a successful bid could help strengthen the city as a centre for the creative industries, culture and leisure. In turn this would help companies like Merlin ERD retain local talent and attract new families to live and work the city.
A spokesperson for Merlin ERD said:
“Attracting the very best personnel was recognised as a key growth challenge for the business, which relies on Engineers that are not only in demand, but who can choose their location worldwide. Superb schools, great connections, a vibrant cosmopolitan restaurant and entertainment scene, with frequent special events, allows Perth city to punch well above its weight.
Already an exceptional location with unrivaled access to Scotland’s skiing, fishing, mountain biking, and some of the best golf in the world – Gleneagles is 15 minutes away – Perth is developing an ever stronger cultural identity. The satellite location for the 2016 military tattoo, Scottish venue for Rewind music festival, recent backdrop for T in The Park, best classic, Folk, Blues & Jazz festivals along with leading sculptural displays, light events and the work underway to convert the theatre district ongoing investment in the city centre and refurbishment of historic cultural buildings makes Perth a formidable contender for City of Culture. Merlin ERD Ltd is delighted support these phenomenal efforts.”
Provost Liz Grant said: “I’m delighted to see an important local business like Merlin ERD backing Perth in the City of Culture competition. The City of Culture competition is all about using culture to regenerate cities, grow the local economy and provide new opportunities in the creative sectors, especially for young people.
One of our biggest challenges in Perth is retaining talent and reversing the fact that young people are leaving to live, work, study or to find opportunities elsewhere. So a strong cultural offering is important in helping us retain talent, but also in helping us attract new highly skilled workers and their families to come to Perth. The City of Culture competition provides us with the opportunity to build on the foundations we have started to lay down to boost the creative sectors, which makes the city a more attractive place to set up a business and employ local people.
I’ve been encouraged by recent investments that have been made in important cultural institutions in Perth and Kinross, such as the £10m investment to give Perth Museum and Art Gallery an overhaul and the work that’s going into bringingCity Hall back into public use as a cultural hub. I was also pleased to see this week that £3m will be spent on turning the old St John’s Primary School into a new hub to start and expand creative businesses and provide affordable studios and workspaces for local creative people.
All of these investments are steps in the right direction and the rising support for the Perth 2021 bid highlights the fact that everyone in the area could benefit from a successful City of Culture bid.”