Downing Street visit confirms Government’s commitment to LEPs

Published 31st July 2013 at 8:00am

Earlier this month, LEP Chairman James Newman attended a reception at Number 10 Downing Street where he was received by the Prime Minister David Cameron and Communities and Local Government Secretary Eric Pickles.

James attended along with Chairs of LEPs from across the UK.

LEP Chairs at 10 Downing St

LEP Chairs outside 10 Downing Street

At the event on Tuesday 23 July, the Prime Minister praised the work local leaders are doing to transform local economies and encouraged them to go further to deliver long lasting growth.

LEP Chairman James Newman said,

“This event helped to give LEP Chairs from across the country more confidence that Government is committed to handing down powers and funding to LEPs and their local partners as the Prime Minister made it clear that his Government sees the LEPs as central to economic growth for UK plc.”

“Clearly, the amount of funding that this Government  made available in the last Spending Round was disappointing news for LEP Chairs, who had hoped that Government would be bolder, but there is promise of more for the well established and successful LEPs, which I believe our City Region is considered to be by Government.”

“I was also able to speak to a number of Ministers, including Eric Pickles, Vince Cable, Greg Clarke and Mark Prisk to update them on our Skills Made Easy programme and to press them to confirm our radical proposals for dealing with our Enterprize Zones in the face of potential disruption caused by HS2.”

Communities Secretary Eric Pickles said:

“Local Enterprise Partnerships are driving growth across the country with energy and imagination.

“This Government made sure that the Spending Round put more fuel in their tanks, and local leaders can now make use of £2 billion pounds a year to support new businesses, create new jobs, create thriving communities and make Britain a great place to do business.”

The meeting coincided with the publication of Government guidance for Local Enterprise Partnerships on how to access the Local Growth Fund through Growth Deal negotiations.

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