Hertfordshire LEP secures £22.3m in Growth Deal expansion

                           
29/01/2015

Hertfordshire LEP has once again successfully secured substantial Government funding for a raft of projects that will deliver new homes, jobs, support business growth and improve the skills of its workforce.

The Government has awarded £22.3m additional funds for 2016-2021 to Hertfordshire LEP just six months after it secured £199.2m, bringing the total secured so far for a wide range of projects in our area to £221.5m.

Over the lifetime of its Deal (2015-2021) up to 15,000 new jobs could be created, 20,000 new homes built and it has the potential to unlock £430m public and private investment.

The projects announced as part of this expansion are:

Evergreen Infrastructure Growth Fund: £12.5m for an Evergreen Infrastructure Growth Fund which will support regeneration projects and provide up to 4,000 new homes and 1,275 jobs, including at South Oxhey and Bishop’s Stortford

Hatfield: £6m to regenerate the town centre which is expected to create 241 new jobs and 97 new homes

Oaklands College, Welwyn Garden City: £0.8m to fund at least 100 new science and technology apprenticeships

North Herts College: £0.4m for a Design and Innovation Centre or ‘fab lab’ which will give small and medium-sized manufacturers access to state of the art equipment and engineering skills training

University of Hertfordshire: £2.5m for an innovation hub which will link up SMEs with the world-class academic and research facilities at the University.

The Rt Hon Matthew Hancock MP, Minister of State for Business, Energy and Enterprise, made the announcement at the University of Hertfordshire on Thursday 29 January.

The Minister said: “The strength of Hertfordshire LEP is in the quality of projects that it puts forward. That is what the LEP has been getting on with, so far with great success. What I have seen today is an example of that. The university takes high-end research through to commercialisation. This together with a wider package of measures will help to support growth and create jobs.”

Hertfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership chairman John Gourd said: “We are delighted at the announcement today that the Government is to expand on our current Growth Deal which will see £22.3m further investment to be spent on vital town centre regeneration, growing the skills base and accelerating further new homes and jobs creation. We also welcome the investment in an innovation hub at the University of Hertfordshire which will strengthen further Hertfordshire’s outstanding science and technology sector.”

Hertfordshire County Council Deputy Leader and Hertfordshire LEP Board member, Chris Hayward said: “The regeneration of our town centres and New Towns is vital for our future economic prosperity. A regeneration fund will accelerate further growth by creating new homes and employment opportunities. The investment in our further education colleges and the University of Hertfordshire will also provide a pipeline of talent to feed our science and technology sector and forge further links between businesses and training providers.”

What are Growth Deals?

Infrastructure, housing, and other funding has been brought together in a single pot, known as the Single Local Growth Fund, and put directly into the hands of local authorities and businesses to invest with their knowledge of what is needed in their area to maximise their potential economic growth.

The Government has set aside a total of £12bn to revitalise local economies via the 39 Local Enterprise Partnerships between 2015 and 2021. In July 2014 it announced £6bn of funding and Hertfordshire LEP was awarded £199.2m.

Click here to see the projects that were announced in the July 2014 Growth Deal.

In the Autumn Statement the Chancellor announced that the Government is to allocate an additional £1 billion to support a second round of Growth Deals, taking the total amount of support committed from £6 billion to £7 billion. This will be funded from within the existing commitment of £12 billion over six years to the single Local Growth Fund pot.