PRIVATE sector companies have invested more than £50million into a borough in the space of a year.

Burnley Council has attracted £51million of investment from outside businesses through several inward investment service and business support programmes from April 2017 to April 2018.

Despite several high street retailer stores closing across the country, such as Poundworld, M&S and Toys R Us, the town has brought in extra investment from businesses, with Primark being the latest national business to open in the town centre back in May.

The amount of investment into the borough is a fourfold increase on the year before when £9.8million was invested into the borough from businesses.

In addition, 129 jobs were created and more than 65 jobs safeguarded through current business programmes, against targets of 65 created and 25 safeguarded.

Figures were revealed in a report during Burnley Council's scrutiny committee at the town hall on Wednesday evening.

Cllr Sue Graham, the executive member for economic development, said: "We have really worked hard on Burnley Council to bring in businesses to the town.

"The council is making massive inroads and supporting the manufacturing industry too such as Boohoo.

"This is why the local plan is important to make sure we continue to get a supply of industrial land available use and the housing development for the workers.

"Our digital industry is also booming and we are not just a manufacturing town. The Landmark at the old Burnley grammar school is being renovated for the project which is going to become a hub for digital businesses.

"The major companies like Microsoft and Google will come there to help support the range of businesses in the town."

Cllr Gordon Birtwistle, the leader of the Liberal Democrats, said: "It's brilliant for Burnley but it could be better.

"To create 129 jobs out of £51million investment is a low return for that sort of money.

"Most of these are warehouse jobs. If it was manufacturing it would bring hundreds of more jobs which would be better."

Cllr Andrew Newhouse, the leader of the Conservatives, added: "Obviously investment and the creation of news jobs in Burnley is good. We would like to see more (investment) but the increase has been good so far."