£12.3m lift for the regional economy

PROJECTS designed to create jobs and boost the Sheffield City Region economy have been given a £12.3m boost by the Government.

Money has been awarded to the city region’s Local Enterprise Partnership to kick-start a series of initatives to encourage economic growth, job creation and housing developments, which had stalled as a result of the recession.

Plans to improve transport links, avert the threat of flooding and build and improve homes are among those which could now get the go-ahead.

The cash comes from the Government’s new Growing Places Fund and is expected to lever in further investment from the European Union.

Sheffield City Region LEP chairman James Newman said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for the LEP to kick-start a really tangible development programme across our area that will make a real difference to all the communities in the city region.”

The LEP says it will spend the coming weeks identifying suitable projects across its area, which will then be submitted to Government for approval.

Work could start in the new year, with projects being run by the local authorities that make up the partnership – Barnsley, Bassetlaw, Bolsover, Chesterfield, Doncaster, North East Derbyshire, Rotherham and Sheffield.

The latest financial boost follows the city region’s successful bid for cash from the Government’s Regional Growth Fund.

Local projects which will be backed by the fund include a £36m loan to help Sheffield Forgemasters to develop production of components for the civil nuclear and steel processing sectors, £9.2m worth of funding for Sheffield University’s new Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre Training Institute and a major extension of Stainless Plating’s Don Road works in Sheffield.