Enterprise Zones first came to public attention in a speech by Sir Geoffrey Howe to the influential Bow Group in 1978 (Bruinvels and Rodrigues, 1989). In the following year the concept emerged as a key element in the policy package introduced by the then newly elected Conservative Government to rejuvenate inner city areas and other unemployment blackspots. Enterprise Zones were specifically created with the intention of providing the right environment in which free enterprise and market forces could flourish, thereby stimulating investment and development activity and leading to job creation. The 1980 consultation paper stated that 'the purpose of these zones is to test as an experiment, and on a few sites, how far industrial and commercial activity can be encouraged by the removal of certain fiscal burdens, and by the removal or streamlined administration of certain statutory or administrative controls'.