The Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire Local Enterprise Partnership has agreed an expansion to its Growth Deal with the Government, which will see an extra £15.4m invested in the Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire area between 2016 and 2021.
The announcement is on top of the £82.3m committed by the Government in July – totalling £97.7m of funding in just six months.
Over the lifetime of its Deal (2015-2021), it is estimated that up to 7,000 new jobs could be created, 1,000 new homes built and that it has the potential to generate £70m public and private investment.
The LEP Chair David Frost said, “This announcement is fantastic news and the fact that we have secured almost £100m committed investment in six months is not only remarkable, but an absolute testament to the growing success story of Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire.
“It clearly demonstrates the Government’s confidence in our ability to deliver major job creating projects on time and on budget. Only a few days ago I saw for myself how the first Growth Deal-funded project, Lichfield Park, is already underway with two more to follow in the coming months.
“We are to determine not just more jobs, but better paying jobs and we know these developments will attract significant further investment and support us in achieving our ambitious employment goals.”
The additional proposed projects include:
• The creation of an ‘enterprise quarter’ in Tamworth
• Construction of new highway infrastructure to improve access to business and employment sites in Stoke City Centre
• The refurbishment of London Mill in Leek for employment and housing
• Improvements to Rugeley Town Centre
• Regeneration of Friarsgate, Lichfield, for retail and leisure
In addition, the Government is also committed in principle to the use of discounted Public Work Loans Board to support the Creation of an Office Quarter in the Smithfield Business District in Stoke-on-Trent City Centre.
The Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire Growth Deal is part of a long-term plan to devolve at least £12 billion from central government to local economies. The plan aims for every part of the country to be a motor of growth for the national economy – building on the strength of the Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire area.
Cllr Philip Atkins, the Leader of Staffordshire County Council, said, “Staffordshire has stepped up to the challenge and is on a roll in terms of our delivery of projects which will have a major impact on long-term economic growth and job creation.
“This announcement means even more communities across Staffordshire including Tamworth, Leek, Rugeley and Lichfield can look forward to regeneration of their areas and greater employment opportunities.”