Posted on January 12, 2012
Category: News

The Humber Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) is today launching the first phase of its Humber Infrastructure Fund, which will fund capital investments to help drive local economic growth across the Humber.

The first tranche of funding, which the LEP hopes to allocate within the first few months of this year, comes from a £5.8m allocation from the Department for Communities and Local Government’s Growing Places Fund.

LEP Chairman Lord Haskins has set up a task force to investigate how to attract more funding into the Fund, which will report to the LEP Board later this year. One likely source is some of the millions of pounds of business rates that will be generated from the LEP’s two Enterprise Zones, which the LEP will retain for 25 years rather than hand over to the Treasury. The Humber Infrastructure Fund could be one route for the LEP to spread the benefits of the Zones across the Humber by investing in other developments.

Examples of the types of project that could receive funding are:
• Development of strategic link roads, roundabouts and access works to unlock development sites
• Flood storage capacity to enable development of homes, employment and retail space
• Works to improve local connectivity and reduce congestion through highways interventions, enabling developments to be taken forward sustainably

The LEP will expect proposals to create jobs and help to attract further investment, and will prioritise projects that already have planning permission and a level of funding in place so can be delivered quickly. As well as the long term jobs that will be created, the LEP hopes that getting stalled developments back on track will support the local construction industry this year.

In most cases the LEP will expect its investments to be repaid over time so funds can be “recycled” to support other projects, but it may consider grants in exceptional circumstances.

Launching the fund, Lord Haskins of Skidby, Chairman of the Humber LEP, said:

“The Humber Infrastructure Fund offers a great opportunity for stalled developments to gain the kick-start they need. I certainly recognise the difficulty developers are having with raising bank funding, and it is something I am very keen to address. There are many businesses in the Humber with good projects on hold, so I am very keen for the Humber LEP to use this Fund to help them get back on track and create jobs.”

Developers have until 10 February to submit initial expressions of interest. For more information please download the Humber Infrastructure Fund Growing Places Fund Prospectus from here.

Expression of Interest forms to accompany the prospectus are available from Lynn Benton at l.benton@humberlep.org

For general queries about the Fund or the application process, the LEP can be contacted on 01482 611890 or email Lynn Benton at l.benton@humberlep.org.