Sector - Transport & Infrastructure

£200M boost to help level up communities

The government has boosted locally-led innovative projects, with £200M in funding. Some 477  projects that will help breathe new life into towns, villages and coastal communities across the UK, will benefit from the extra funding as part of the government drive to level up the country.

Skills training for the unemployed and investment in businesses developing low carbon technology are among the projects set to benefit, Levelling Up Secretary Michael Gove announced at the beginning of November.

It is the latest significant tranche of funding for Levelling Up, as the government delivers on its mission to level up the nation and commitment to net zero, following the Budget which saw £1.7Bn from the first round of the UK-wide Levelling Up Fund backing 105 projects, and the first 21 projects benefitting from the £150M Community Ownership Fund.

Many of the successful projects are also supporting the UK’s path to net zero carbon emissions. For example, a £434,000 contribution has been awarded to support the seafood industry in Grimsby to modernise, with funding helping the sector reduce its carbon footprint by improving the energy efficiency of its cold storage and transport fleet.

Secretary of State for Levelling Up Michael Gove said: “We are levelling up in every corner of the United Kingdom, backing locally-led projects that will make a real difference to communities and help to deliver our net zero commitments.

“There is incredible talent spread right across our great country and this investment will unlock the opportunities to match.”

Projects being funded through the Community Renewal Fund include:

  • £1 million to train people in retrofit and modern construction skills in Devon, helping people secure jobs and ensuring local businesses have the skills they need.
  • £200,000 to support unemployed and disadvantaged people in Carmarthenshire to start their own business by investing in digital and entrepreneurial skills. The programme will also fund a bootcamp for female entrepreneurs, creating a networking group for women in business.
  • £187,000 to support the development of electric vehicle charging across whole of the Scottish Borders to benefit residents, the public sector and businesses and ensure maximisation of commercial opportunities and reduction in carbon footprint.
  • £480,000 to support local businesses in Blackburn and Darwen to adopt low carbon production technologies, bring low carbon products to market, source low carbon components, reduce energy consumption and become low carbon technology installers. The funding will develop a low carbon skills academy to identify the skills necessary for low carbon sector and design low carbon training programmes.
  • £426,000 will help small businesses in Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon innovate and reduce their carbon footprint.

The UK Community Renewal Fund will pilot imaginative new programmes to boost productivity and grow local economies.

The Levelling Up Fund will invest in infrastructure to support economic recovery, while the Community Ownership Fund empowers communities to take ownership of treasured assets such as local pubs, post offices and football stadiums at risk of closure.

Together, the three funds will level up left-behind areas and unleash the potential of people and places right across the country.

List of successful bids: click here

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