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Urgent call for bidders to £50 million Local Growth Fund pot

Urgent call for bidders to £50 million Local Growth Fund pot

Following the launch of the Local Industrial Strategy (LIS) for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, an urgent call has been made for organisations to apply to a £50 million pot of growth funding before time runs out.

The Business Board, the Local Enterprise Partnership accountable to the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority, is calling for applications to the Government’s Local Growth Fund (LGF) Major Projects stream. The Business Board has today (July 22) launched a prospectus on the LGF, which also includes details of a number of other funding calls being announced.

The LIS, which launched on Friday (July 19) has detailed the key areas of action needed to support the Combined Authority’s devolution deal commitment to doubling the size of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough economy. The LIS has identified the key strengths and challenges of the distinct sub economies of the Fens, Greater Peterborough and Greater Cambridge, detailing the strategy for supporting broad-based growth and spreading prosperity to more people.

This new call for applications will have a strong focus on job creation. With the £50 million pot, the Business Board will aim to create at least 10,000 jobs.

To tie in with the LIS, applicants will need to demonstrate how they deliver on one or more of the LIS priorities through capital investment that will:

• Further develop infrastructure through planned transport, digital and energy interventions across the Combined Authority partnership.
• Deliver integrated approaches to business support, ensuring businesses and potential businesses have the access to the right kind of space, access to growth coaching and support networks to help them.
• Harnessing innovation as a tool for business growth, generating world class research.
• Improving education and training levels to ensure businesses have the skills they need and people have better opportunities.

Interim chairman of the Business Board, Austen Adams said:

“The publication last week of the Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Local Industrial strategy has provided exciting clear actions and interventions to help firms grow, become more productive and increase local and global reach, while fostering and generating growth across our area in the next few year.

“This Investment Prospectus invites those projects seeking to deliver on the LIS foundations in our economy – aiming to accelerate the creation of new jovs, skills provision and boosting productivity – to apply for the remaining Local Growth Funding.”

All funds must be drawn down by March 31, 2021 and the LGF can be in the form of a grant or loan which will impact directly on the Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) areas. Funding for projects is in the form of capital funds.  There is a small pot of revenue funding that is available for direct business support and growth activity.

There are a number of additional funding calls being relaunched today (July 22):
• Direct Business Growth Grants Scheme
• Business Growth Programme
• Eastern Agri-Tech Growth Initiative
• Skills Capital Fund
Applications are welcomed from the public and private sector, or other delivery organisations including joint venture companies and the voluntary sector.