The Business Secretary Vince Cable has opened the first stage of a technology park which is expected to create 2,000 jobs in the next ten years.
Dr Cable flew in a helicopter around the site at MIRA near Nuneaton. He opened it by activating an army robot - which cut the ribbon. The vehicle - developed there - is normally used in warzones to find roadside bombs.
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More than 5000 bikes will be available for hire 24 hours a day at a range of public places including rail stations and public squares.
The memorial will be the first time that the names of all from Nottinghamshire who died in the war are in one place.