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Hampshire County Council welcomes Local Growth Deal Announcements

Tuesday, 08 July 2014

Hampshire County Council welcomed the news from the LEPs (Local Enterprise Partnerships) that their bids for funding from the Government's Local Growth Fund had been successful in securing significant investment for the Hampshire area.

Hampshire is served by two LEP areas, the Enterprise M3 area which stretches from the outskirts of London to the New Forest covering North Hampshire and Western Surrey - and the Solent LEP which covers the south of the county, from the waterside part of New Forest, through southern Test Valley and Winchester Districts, across to Havant, including Southampton, Portsmouth and the Isle of Wight.

All LEPs were invited to bid for the Government's Local Growth Fund to support economic growth in the area and submitted potential schemes that would unlock sites for housing and employment, enhance transport connectivity, and support business growth while growing the local skills base.

The Enterprise M3 has been awarded £118million and the Solent LEP has been awarded £124.8million for infrastructure, support for businesses, and skills and education projects. The total Local Growth Fund allocation to be spent on schemes in Hampshire is over £130million.

Hampshire County Council will be a key partner in delivering the transport infrastructure projects prioritised by the LEPs. These include improvements to the key transport routes around Basingstoke, access to Fareham and Gosport - including Junction 10 of the M27, the Stubbington Bypass, Peel Common Roundabout, works to support the proposed developments at Welborne and North Whiteley, and the Whitehill & Bordon Relief Road.

Councillor Keith Mans, a Board Member on both the Hampshire LEPs, and Deputy Leader of Hampshire County Council, said: "This is excellent news for Hampshire. The Enterprise M3 LEP and the Solent LEP have secured very strong Growth Funding awards to provide a robust platform on which to ensure the local economy prospers and the area continues to significantly contribute to the national economy.

I'd like to congratulate the LEPs for negotiating this significant investment in the area which will benefit the economy generally and I particularly welcome the investment in skills, training and the emphasis on the hi-tech industry. It will also unlock further funding from both the public and private sectors."

Councillor Seán Woodward, Executive Member for Economy, Transport and Environment at Hampshire County Council said: "This investment will not only improve the infrastructure for existing residents but will make the area much more attractive for businesses. Good transport links are vital if Hampshire is to prosper in terms of jobs, skills and homes. Improved access around Fareham and the Gosport peninsula, for example, unlocks the potential of the Enterprise Zone, creating 3000 new jobs by 2021, while the package of road improvements around Basingstoke will help support the ambitious local economic growth plans for the town."

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