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Graham Peters, George Kieffer, Christian Brodie and Geoff Miles of SELEP

Graham Peters, George Kieffer, Christian Brodie and Geoff Miles of SELEP

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Kent set to benefit from major bid for funding

Graham Peters, George Kieffer, Christian Brodie and Geoff Miles of SELEP

Graham Peters, George Kieffer, Christian Brodie and Geoff Miles of SELEP

A number of Kent projects could benefit as part of a bid to the Government worth  £229m, that would unlock a further £756m of private sector investment and other funding.

The £229m bid was submitted by the South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SELEP) to the Government’s nationwide Local Growth Fund on behalf of East Sussex, Essex, Kent, Medway, Southend and Thurrock.

Of the 41 projects from across the SELEP area, 18 are from Kent and Medway, including regeneration in Dartford, Swanley and Ashford town centres, Ashford International rail connectivity, Rochester Airport Technology Park, Kent Medical Campus-Maidstone , highway works and a biotech hub at NIAB/East Malling Research.

SELEP has calculated that every pound invested by the Government will generate at least three times that in terms of investment from elsewhere.

Christian Brodie, Chairman of SELEP, said: “Our bid delivers against the Government’s priorities of creating more jobs, homes and improving skills. Support for it will send a very positive message to existing businesses and inward investors that there is an ambition and appetite to grow the economy of the South East.”

“Sitting between mainland Europe and the rest of the UK, our area is perfectly placed to deliver for the country as a whole. The bid is timely as it will ensure we have a strong economy as we move towards our new relationship with Europe.”

Each of the 41 projects, many of them delivering new or improved transport infrastructure, has been selected locally as priorities by the local partnerships to help create jobs and the economy; build more new homes or support the skills and training of local communities.

Overall the bid, if approved by Government, would help to create a further 73,672 jobs throughout the area.

Recognising the high demand for new housing across the area, the SELEP-supported projects would also secure the construction of a further 31,052 homes. This would be a significant contribution towards the Government’s plan to build 1 million new homes by 2020.

The rate of house building starts and completions has continued to rise year on year since 2013/14 and SELEP is eager to maintain the momentum. In 2015/16, 10,600 new homes were completed across the SELEP area, compared to 7,690 in 14/15, an increase of 33%.

The bid also recognises the importance of improving the future skills of the area’s young people to help support the economy, with plans to support a further 12,195 learners.

In Kent, projects already funded by the Government through SELEP include highway improvements at North Farm in Tunbridge Wells and Westwood at Broadstairs; Chatham Waterfront, Tonbridge High Street improvements, and the construction of the new Ashford College.

A decision on the new bid is expected before the Autumn Statement in December.

Further information on the bid can be found at:


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Locate in Kent would like to thank - Canterbury Christ Church University, Discovery Park, Frogmore, Kent County Council, Liberty Property Trust UK, London Array, Medway Council, Thanet Earth, University of Kent and Visit Kent - for the use of their images on this website.