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Lord Heseltine, Chairman of the Thames Estuary 2050 Growth Commission

Lord Heseltine, Chairman of the Thames Estuary 2050 Growth Commission

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Thames Estuary 2050 Growth Commission launched today

Lord Heseltine, Chairman of the Thames Estuary 2050 Growth Commission

Lord Heseltine, Chairman of the Thames Estuary 2050 Growth Commission

A Thames Estuary growth plan will be launched today by Lord Heseltine and a group of world-leading experts from across business and government tasked with boosting the economy around north Kent.

The Thames Estuary 2050 Growth Commission is being unveiled at the Queen Elizabeth II Park in Stratford and aims to boost productivity, attract and retain skilled workers and capitalise on major infrastructure works in the 40 mile stretch of Thames Estuary from Canary Wharf to Southend and Thanet.

The organisation, led by the former deputy prime minister Lord Heseltine, was announced in the last Budget, and will consult with businesses before submitting plans to the Chancellor ahead of the 2017 Autumn Statement.

The 40 mile Thames Estuary region has a population of more than three million people and in Kent covers the areas of Canterbury, Dartford, Gravesham, Medway, Swale and Thanet. Already in Kent there are projects such as Ebbsfleet Garden City, the planned Lower Thames Crossing and being part of the North Kent Enterprise Zone taking place.

In a speech at the London Aquatics Centre, Mr Heseltine said: “This government is determined to ensure every part of the country benefits from a growing economy and all the evidence suggests that the Thames Estuary has incredible economic potential.

“This commission presents a wonderful opportunity, not only to make the most of plans already afoot, but to look beyond that and forge ahead with a vision to unleash growth for decades to come.

“We have brought together world-leading industry experts and would urge others with an interest in the region and good ideas to now come forward and contribute.”

Lord Heseltine has plenty of regeneration experience having overseen some of Britain’s most successful projects such as London Docklands and Liverpool City Centre.

The commission will be made up of a team of 17 experts. The deadline for submissions from businesses is midday on Friday, September 9. Submissions should be emailed to ThamesEstuary@communities.gsi.gov.uk.

The commission also covers the London boroughs of Barking and Dagenham, Bexley, Greenwich, Havering, Lewisham, Newham and Tower Hamlets and the Essex councils of Basildon, Castle Point, Rochford, Southend-on-Sea and Thurrock.

For more information on the commission, click here.

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