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Thousands expected as Liverpool stages the International Festival for Business

Business leaders and captains of industry from around the world are arriving in Liverpool for the city's second International Festival for Business.

Three weeks of events will take place around the city, hoping to repeat the success of the previous festival in 2014 - which the organisers say resulted 280 million of trade and investment deals.

George Osborne, the Chancellor and Tatton MP, will formally open the event at Liverpool Exhibition Centre.

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Study reveals the North West likes it businesses to be a family affair

Business owners in the North West consider themselves simply as 'grafters' Credit: Press Association.

A major study of UK businesses has found that the North West has the strongest family business tradition in the UK.

The research by AXA Business Insurance found that those in the North West are shunning the more glitzy titles like ‘entrepreneur’ or ‘pioneer’ and almost 50pc consider themselves simply ‘grafters’.

The survey of NW businesses found that the recession and austerity has bred a new type of ‘grey entrepreneur.’ Around a quarter in the region say this describes them (27%).

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EU Referendum: Where does our money go?

How much does it cost to stay in the European Union, and is it worth it?

The UK sends £350 million a week to Europe - but one city that's been transformed by the £190 million of what comes back is Liverpool.

According to those who think we should stay in the EU Liverpool has received around £2 billion pounds of EU cash for everything from hospitals to the city's Tate Museum.

But those who want us to leave the EU say it's British taxpayers money, and it would be best spent by British politicians.

Our political correspondent Daniel Hewitt goes back on the road one more time.

EU Referendum: What would Brexit mean for business?

What's the link between asparagus, Manchester Airport and London Routemaster Buses?

The simple answer is they all play an important role in the economy of the North West.

But here's another question....will our region's economy be better off if we stay in or leave the EU?

To find some answers, our Political Correspondent Daniel Hewitt's climbed back into his classic Vauxhall Chevette to go back in time to 1975 - the last time we had a vote on Europe.

EU Referendum: What has EU immigration done for the North West?

Granada Reports is running a special series assessing the impact EU membership has had on different parts of the North West. The latest instalment looks at immigration.

When Britain last held a referendum on Europe in 1975, migration from Europe was minimal.

Now EU migrants make up half of all arrivals here. Our Political Correspondent Daniel Hewitt has been touring the region in a classic 1970's car. This time he visits two towns with different stories to tell.

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What's it like driving a Vauxhall Chevette in 2016?

All this week Granada Reports is going back to 1975 - the last time Britain held a referendum on our membership of the European Union.

Our Political Correspondent Daniel Hewitt is touring the North West in a classic car from the period - the Vauxhall Chevette, which rolled off the production line in Ellesmere Port in 1975.

But what's it like to drive in 2016?

The Vauxhall Chevette on its first stop in Blackpool Credit: ITV News
Political Correspondent is driving a Vauxhall Chevette around the North West. Credit: ITV News

EU Referendum: Back to the Future - Europhiles v Eurosceptics

It was the year Status Quo achieved their only UK number 1, Manchester United won promotion back to Division 1, and the Vauxhall Chevette rolled off the production line at Ellesmere Port.

1975 was also the year Britain last held a referendum on our membership of the European Union, and over the next four nights we're going back to the future to what 41 years of EU membership has done for the region.

Tonight, our Political Correspondent is taking the Chevette from Blackpool to Manchester - the most eurosceptic and euro-friendly places in the North West.

EU Referendum: Where it all began - The Extraordinary Story of Stuttgart and St Helens

Some towns have one, others have two or three, but no twinnings are as enduring and perhaps significant than the one between St Helens and the German City of Stuttgart.

In 1957, the Common Market was formed on the principles of trade, co-operation and friendship.

But in 9 years earlier, in the wake of World War Two, St Helens and Stuttgart forged a relationship based on those values, setting an example of the rest of Europe to follow.

Our Political Correspondent has been two both places, to re-tell their story.

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