[C]umbria Local Enterprise Partnership, the county’s strategic economic body, has published its latest annual report, including progress on its portfolio of investments and major projects to help boost the county’s economic growth.
Cumbria LEP is currently investing over £60m across the county, with projects including the ongoing work to its flagship Barrow Waterfront site.
In conjunction with the Homes and Communities Agency, the LEP invested £2m in the infrastructure improvement scheme at Durranhill industrial estate on the outskirts of Carlisle. The completed project has delivered access improvements and site servicing to attract more businesses to this key M6 corridor employment site.
Road developments on the A595 and the A590 are also progressing thanks to the LEP’s economic impact studies on transport connectivity and evidence presented to central government.
In 2016-17, Cumbria LEP has also helped to fund various initiatives designed to improve the county’s skills offer, with beneficiaries such as Furness College, Newton Rigg College and the University of Cumbria all opening new facilities in recent months following investments in training for advanced manufacturing, STEM and agricultural disciplines.
New investments totalling £10.5m were also announced for Whitehaven town centre, Lillyhall North and Carlisle Station Gateway and the Citadels.
Regional growth fund investments administered from the LEP are also supporting local business beneficiaries with their growth. Penrith based Cranstons Quality Butchers have completed an expansion of their Ullswater Road production facility and a refit of their head office.
Meanwhile, Family-run bakery Bells of Lazonby is exporting its ‘We Love Cake’ branded, gluten-free goodies to Australia, whilst The Lakes Distillery Company Ltd secured a deal to have three of its lines stocked on the shelves of Asda.
Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership chair George Beveridge says: “It has been a busy and challenging twelve months. We are now looking at all our plans to ensure they align with the Government’s new Industrial Strategy, as well as continuing to lobby for positive post-Brexit outcomes for local business.
“We are also lobbying the government to prioritise skills and bring businesses into schools, where Cumbria is already a top performer.
“We will ensure that our strategic economic plans reflect these important priorities so that we are well placed to press Cumbria’s economic case and to bid for any new funding streams as and when they become available.”
For further information or to read Cumbria LEP’s annual report, visit: www.cumbrialep.co.uk