Essex UK Health Technology Cluster

Drug discovery & development activities at Chesterford Research Park highlight Essex’s contribution to the Cambridge life sciences cluster.

Located in Essex but just 15 miles from Cambridge [1], Chesterford Research Park is an integral part of the Cambridge life sciences cluster. The park is home to innovative companies including Isogenica and Charles River Laboratories, and is a key site within the wider UK life sciences ‘golden triangle’ (London-Cambridge-Oxford), contributing to its impressive track record of technology development and ground-breaking scientific discoveries [2].

Robinson Building

A leading centre for biotech innovation

Many of the businesses at Chesterford Research Park are leaders in their fields. AstraZeneca undertakes research and development on the site alongside other high-profile biotech companies, many of which are spinouts from Cambridge University. Cellcentric (discovery of small molecule cancer inhibitors), Isogenica (biologics drug development) and Isomerase Therapeutics (biosynthetic engineering) are all involved in highly specialised drug discovery and development. Oncologica has developed precision oncology testing enabling targeted cancer therapies and Axol Bioscience creates human cell cultures and reagents for research.


Accessing 'Top Talent' within the Cambridge cluster...

When, in 2013, Astra Zeneca announced plans to relocate major UK R&D operations from Cheshire to Cambridge, the company cited ‘access to world-class talent and opportunities for collaboration’ as key drivers behind the move [3]. Within the Cambridge Life Sciences Cluster, the same advantages are attracting leading businesses to Chesterford Research Park in Essex.

Arecor, a leader in formulation technology innovation, is currently in the process of relocating to Chesterford.

Chesterford Research Park

“We selected Chesterford because of the quality of innovative companies already located here, the Park’s location within the Cambridge cluster and the excellent central facilities. Attracting top talent as we continue to grow is key to our future success and we feel that Chesterford is the ideal location from which we can continue to forge ahead.”

Dr Sarah Howell

Meeting the needs of growing life sciences companies...

One of Chesterford’s key advantages is its ability to meet the changing accommodation needs of growing life sciences companies on a single site. Chesterford Science Village provides small-scale laboratory and office spaces for early-stage start-up firms, which can then expand by taking on more space in the same location. This flexibility has attracted companies such as the award-winning DRW to the site. A producer of novel point-of-care diagnostic kits, DRW has expanded at Chesterford from start-up to established business.

Chesterford Research Park also provides space for larger businesses. Domainex, a provider of integrated drug discovery services, recently moved into an existing building on the park, having out-grown accommodation at Cambridge Science Park. Companies including Charles River Laboratories and AstraZeneca have designed and built their own bespoke buildings on the site, which still offers space for further business expansions.

Science Village

Close to Cambridge, with space for growth...

The Cambridge Cluster’s excellence in life sciences continues to attract the best companies and talent. But within the city of Cambridge, it’s not easy for businesses to find space for growth. Just a few miles away, in Essex, Chesterford Research Park provides that space, along with all the other advantages of the Cambridge Life Sciences Cluster.

Find out more

Contact INVEST Essex to find out more about the Essex UK Health Technology Cluster


[1] Google Maps
[2] JLL, Life Science Clusters Report, 2015
[3] AstraZeneca, 2013