The South West is home to around 5 million people and takes in Cornwall and the Isles of Scily, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Somerset, Wiltshire, and the West of England – an area that makes it the largest region in England.
Its major cities are Bristol and Plymouth. Other urban areas include Swindon, Gloucester, Exeter, and the South East Dorset conurbation of Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch.
Employment is the South West is comparable to that of the national economy – it is dominated by the service sector, but manufacturing continues to provide one in 11 of all jobs.
Over the next 10 years the number of young people living in the region is set to decline by around 6% - one of the lowest rates of decline in the country.
The South West has:
172 school sixth forms
2 sixth form colleges
40 further education providers
11 independent specialist providers
21 independent private providers.
It comprises 16 local authorities and seven sub-regional groups have been established here to support the planning and commissioning process.