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DCLG awards £650m local growth funding to LEPs

The government has announced the latest instalment of its Local Growth Fund, awarding £650m to 11 local enterprise partnerships (LEPs) across London, the south east and east of England.

The communities secretary, Sajid Javid, confirmed that 8 LEPs from London and the south east will receive £492m to support local jobs and growth, while a further £150m will be given to three LEPs in the east of the country.

Javid said that the funding could create 237,000 jobs, nearly 120,000 homes and attract over £4.7bn of investment in the LEPs’ respective regions.

“As part of efforts to deliver an economy that works for everyone, the government is equipping local people with the resources they need to boost growth in their area,” Javid said.

“This new money will give businesses across the region the support and opportunities they need to achieve their potential.”

The government has already allocated £7.3bn of its £12bn Local Growth Fund which invites LEPs to submit joint bids with local partners seeking to boost local infrastructure, skills and jobs.

New projects to be supported by the £650m include the creation of a bio-innovation centre at the University of Sussex in Brighton, a technical and professional skills centre at Stansted Airport to support aircraft engineering students, and an air quality programme for businesses in London.

Local growth minister Andrew Percy said: “From Brighton to the Norfolk Broads today’s investment will support the delivery of new homes and jobs right across the South East and East of England.

“These growth deals are a crucial part of our efforts to create an economy that works for everyone, and will ensure every region of the country has the chance to realise its full potential.”

The government is currently completing its third round of local growth funding, having announced £556m for LEPs in the Northern Powerhouse along the launch of its industrial strategy last week.

The next set of allocations to the West and East Midlands under this round of funding is expected to be announced shortly.

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