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Lord Haskins of Skidby, Chair of the Humber LEP partnership

Six months on from the start of our Growth Deal programme, and with the Spending Review approaching, it is a good time to look at how devolved funds are being deployed in the Humber.

With a varied portfolio of projects, the day to day progress of major, multi-year developments may not always be obvious – but partners’ work continues apace.

We secured £103m of Local Growth Fund (LGF) in 2014 which leveraged a £367m package with input from local partners and the private sector across 19 projects. This was bolstered in a second round of bidding by almost £10m for a further 9 projects.

Grimsby Institute’s Modal training facility, which had its project launch this month, will be a Centre of Excellence for the ports, energy and logistics sectors – the first in the UK to offer integrated logistics training for sea, road, rail and air. It is supported by £2.05m LGF.

The project is a key piece of the jigsaw of how the skills team at the Humber LEP are working with colleges, the University of Hull and training providers to develop the facilities to serve the needs of emerging and existing Humber businesses.

A lot of work to align skills provision and invest in facilities at the region’s colleges and training hubs had begun under the City Deal.

However, as well as Modal Training, the Growth Deal will also see Goole College further building its capacity with a workshop modernisation to include a logistics hub and construction workshop which is on track for completion in September 2016 and Catch near Immingham is working to realise an £8.95m offshore training facility supported by £1.8m LGF.

We are also supporting work to protect what’s already here and enable new developments with £48m of LGF enabling a wider programme of flood defence work.

This includes the flood defence improvements underway now at Hull’s Albert Dock which will help to safeguard more than 3,000 jobs in the area, and projects under development for areas including Cottingham and Orchard Park, Hessle Foreshore, Anlaby and East Ella and around the River Hull – which will help to reduce the flood risk for 90 per cent of the homes flooded in 2007.

Across the estuary investigation work has begun on site for the Lincolnshire Lakes flood mitigation project and design work is continuing with an investment of £13m LGF to prepare the way for a 6,000-home development and protect two nearby villages.

North Lincolnshire Council has delivered the first part of a scheme (the roundabout) to improve access at Humberside Airport on time and under budget making way for preparatory works for the next LGF funded stage.

While in Grimsby work on a £6.1m office block has begun and the accompanying traffic scheme has been approved by the council’s Cabinet and tenders issued last month.

A rail gauge enhancement scheme, using more than £7m LGF, for freight from the South Humber Ports to Doncaster to enable larger loads to be carried is due to begin at the end of this year.

In Hull planning permission has been granted for a bridge across the A63 to join the city centre with the waterfront, and the Transport Secretary has confirmed the Government’s contribution. The aim is to have the bridge ready for Hull’s City of Culture year in 2017.

Construction will start in February while work to repurpose Hull’s Old Town will soon be underway including refurbishing Trinity Indoor Market and infrastructure for Street markets. Work on Hull City Council’s major housing programme, which has been supported with £10m LGF, is continuing.

Other major schemes, including the electrification of the Hull to Selby line and phase two of the Bridlington Integrated Transport Plan, are also continuing to move forward in development.

The Local Growth Fund is enabling the LEP to support this ambitious portfolio of projects, led by public and private sector partners including Humber local authorities and training providers. The progress made over the last six months is encouraging and, ahead of the Spending Review, a useful reminder of what can be achieved together when funding is devolved locally.

The Humber Growth Deal is on track to:

  • Create or safeguard more than 9,000 jobs
  • Support 2,030 additional learners
  • Protect over 62,000 homes from flooding
  • Protect 251,485sqm of commercial floor space from flooding
  • Support 4,500 homes to be built
  • Support 4,500 homes to be improved
  • Improve transport links and access to key sites
  • £4m was put into the Growing the Humber fund to support businesses with their growth projects which are creating jobs and wider benefits to the community and supply chain in the region
  • £250k is keeping the Growth Hub running to help businesses to access the right support

Growth Deal

Yorkshire Post article

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Lord Haskins of Skidby
Lord Haskins of Skidby

Lord Haskins brings a wealth of commercial, political and economic regeneration experience to his position at the Humber LEP. He is the former chairman of Northern Foods and Express Dairies, former Board member of Yorkshire Forward Regional Development Agency (1998-2008) and is also currently a non-executive Director of JSR Farms Ltd as well as being a member of the Lords ‘Cabinet Office Equality and Reform Group Board’ and Pro-Chancellor of the Open University.