Stoke Staffs LEP

Getting Building Fund

In June 2020, the Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire Local Enterprise Partnership (the LEP) was invited by UK Government to put forward ideas for projects that might benefit from a policy intervention. The UK Government response to the ‘call for ideas’ was to create the Getting Building Fund that was designed to support or accelerate established schemes that might be affected by the economic impact of COVID-19. In addition, a tranche of new projects were supported where the case for intervention was clearly established and business cases sufficiently advanced  in order to deliver the projects within an 18 month timescale.

Specifically, Government were looking for shovel-ready capital projects which could be delivered within 18 months.
Nationally, the size of the Getting Building Fund pot totals £900 million.
The overarching objectives of the fund are to drive economic growth, create new jobs and support green recovery. This includes funding to enable:
• town and city centre modernisation through targeted infrastructure investments unleashing their longer-term economic potential;
• investment in physical connectivity to improve the functioning of the local economy;
• investment in innovation ecosystem including through improvements to research and development facilities driving up business productivity;
• improvements to human capital; and
• improving digital connectivity, in order to support economic performance, particularly in more isolated areas.
SSLEP was provisionally allocated £23.7 million Getting Building Fund subject to business case appraisal and to be spent by 31st March 2022.

Watch: to hear Chairman Alun Rogers talk about the importance of our Getting Building Fund projects.

Which projects will be supported by the Getting Building Fund?

The Getting Building Fund focuses on projects that can progress quickly but will also stimulate and boost economies in some of the areas most economically impacted by COVID-19. Our supported projects have good strategic fit with our Local Industrial Strategy core themes of Place, Innovation, Growing Business and Future Workforce.

Projects will support the delivery of new enterprise and innovation space, investment in digital skills for young people and improvements to transport infrastructure which will unlock new housing sites and enable increased, active travel, helping to facilitate a green recovery.

Find out more about  the 11 projects that have been awarded funding, subject to delivery of full business cases and funding approval.

How were the projects selected?

As part of the initial ‘Call for Ideas’ stage, the LEP Secretariat collated a long-list of approximately 60 reference projects from across the LEP geographical area and submitted these along with initial spend profiles and headline information as requested by UK Government. Following the subsequent establishment of the Getting Building Fund and associated criteria, the LEP Secretariat commissioned its technical advisors (Hatch Regeneris) to prioritise the reference projects aligned to the indicative spend profile of the provisional funding envelope of £23.7m.

Hatch Regeneris provided technical assessments based on a range of criteria (e.g. was planning permission in place, could the project be delivered within the timescales required to access the funding, etc) and made recommendations to the LEP Secretariat and the LEP’s Strategic Programme Management Board. A contingency list was also produced to draw on should any of the shortlisted projects not progress as envisaged. UK Government provisionally agreed the LEPs shortlist of projects on 4 August 2020 subject to more detailed individual business case submissions and subsequent appraisal and approval by the LEP in the Autumn/Winter (see links below for the individual project approval meeting dates via the Strategic Programme Management Group SPMG).

How do we approve the business cases and award funding?

Whilst 11 projects have been identified for Getting Building Fund, each project will now be required to develop a detailed business case, which will be scrutinised by the SSLEP’s Independent Technical Evaluator. Funding approval will then be sought from SPMG before the funding is made available to spend.

Keeping up to date

We will regularly update the information below for each of the GBF projects, keep an eye on our news feed and Twitter accounts as well.

Drakelow Park (£5.05m)

A strategic development in South Derbyshire that will accommodate 2,000 houses and 30 hectares of employment land. The scheme has transport implications for East Staffordshire and the project is a new road bridge that will facilitate the development. This scheme is also being supporting by the D2N2 LEP.

Innovation Centre Seven (£6.1m)

Innovation Centre Seven (IC7) will deliver 2,696m2 of BREEAM excellent innovation space at the Keele Growth Corridor University Enterprise Zone.

New Enterprise Collaboratory (£500K)

The New Enterprise & Innovation Collaboratory will accelerate and strengthen the creation, survival and growth of business start-ups through access to specialist equipment, co-working environment and wider enabling facilities and support within Staffordshire University’s Innovation Enterprise Zone.
Latest Update – SPMG considering the business case evaluation on 29th October 2020.

‘Powering Up’ Enterprise (£2.8m)

The city council will lead on re-purposing and refurbishing underused and vacant floor space, to create appropriate, modern and digitally enhanced workspace.

I54 Western Expansion (£3m)

The i54 Western Extension is set to expand the existing premier employment site i54 South Staffordshire, which is recognised as being of regional and national importance and one of the most successful Enterprise Zone locations in the country.
Latest Update –the i54 dedicated website provides all the most up to date information.

Health Innovation Centre (£2.89m)

The Health Innovation Centre has been designed in collaboration with industry experts to meet modern demands and challenges in the sector and will use the latest medical techniques and methods to train the next generation of skilled nurses, midwives and allied health professionals.

Skills Equipment Fund – Digital Skills Academy (£550,375)

South Staffordshire College will be transforming digital training and education, with the delivery of a range of internationally recognised digital programmes.
Latest Update – SPMG considering the business case evaluation on 29th October 2020.

Skills Equipment Fund – Creative and Digital Industries (£250K)

The Creative and Digital Industries (CDI) scheme incorporates the completion of the remodelling and refurbishment of the New Library Building at Stoke-on-Trent College. This will create a collaborative learning space for the development of digital skills
Latest Update – SPMG considering the business case evaluation on 29th October 2020.

Skills Equipment Fund – Digital and Construction Skills Projects (£120K)

The funding will create a hub for the creative digital and digital construction market. Through the remodelling of the New Library Building a new collaborative learning space will be created, ensuring that local people and employers have the best chance to develop the very latest skills and techniques in construction technologies that employers in the local area require.
Latest Update – SPMG considering the business case evaluation on 29th October 2020.

Shire Hall Regeneration Project (£1.6m)

The County Council will re-purpose the hall and give it a new use which will see a knock-on effect of helping to re-generate the town centre. The building will be sympathetically re-modelled to become a business startup hub in the former library area, high quality events space in the Assembly Hall, a food and drink offer in the vaults, with museum and exhibition space in the court rooms.
Latest Update – SPMG considering the business case evaluation on 29th October 2020.

Staffordshire Local Sustainable Transport Project (£651K)

A package of sustainable transport schemes in Tamworth, Biddulph, Burton-upon-Trent, Uttoxeter, Eccleshall and Burntwood delivering walking and cycling provision to facilitate a green recovery.
Latest Update – SPMG considering the business case evaluation on 29th October 2020.

Have a look at our latest dashboard figures (work in progress)

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