UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF)

Overview: The UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) is a central pillar of the UK government’s ambitious Levelling Up agenda and a significant component of its support for places across the UK. The fund is part of a suite of funding which begins to replace the previous European Structural Funds and aims to empower local lead authorities to identity opportunities to build pride in place, improve the places in which people live and supporting individuals and businesses to thrive, by:

  • Boosting productivity, pay, jobs and living standards by growing the private sector, especially in those places where they are lagging
  • Spreading opportunities and improve public services, especially in those places where they are weakest
  • Restoring a sense of community, local pride and belonging, especially in those places where they have been lost
  • Empowering local leaders and communities, especially in those places lacking local agency.

Each area of the UK has received an allocation from the fund via a funding formula rather than a competition. Blaby District Council will act as a Lead Authority and has been allocated £2,115,168 of funding for local investment over three years to be spent by March 2025.

In order to access the District’s allocation, the Council needs to submit an Investment Plan to Government by 1 August 2022. The Council is currently preparing its draft plan to secure funds aligned to the Government’s prospectus and intervention activities for assessment before October 2022.

For more information, visit the GOV.uk website linked below.

Blaby District’s Investment Plan – Have Your Say

A draft Investment Plan has been prepared and we are keen to seek your views on its approach and the themes it covers. It provides five overarching themes encompassing the activities and interventions proposed. The themes are:

  1. Business Support, Innovation and Growth
  2. Communities, Health and Wellbeing
  3. Tourism and Visitor Economy
  4. Environment and Infrastructure
  5. Employability and Skills

Further information is set out below.

The Investment Plan must be realistic and respond to the needs of the community, the Districts’ challenges and opportunities. Activities in it must be deliverable and meet one or more of the priorities. We are keen to make sure these Investment Plan activities are correct for the District, which will allow us to identify the outcomes and finalise the Investment Plan. If you have an idea that we should consider, please complete and return the proforma below.

You may also have ideas of other interventions or activities that could benefit our communities, and we want to hear these. To comment on the Draft Investment Plan please email planning@blaby.gov.uk.

The deadline for comments or ideas for consideration is 7pm, 5 August 2022. We are also holding a drop-in session on the 26 July from 4-7pm at the Council Offices, Desford Road, Narborough. Officers will be available to discuss any questions or potential challenges that you feel should be prioritised.

Blaby’s Draft Investment Plan

As there is significant cross over in the proposals in the Draft Investment Plan, activities have been grouped into five key themes that bring together projects from across the three priorities to better tell the story.

Business Support, Innovation and Growth

This is focused on a range of activities to provide support across a wide range of the District’s businesses to grow and thrive. Working alongside existing businesses and institutions to create new jobs and boost community cohesion. This theme is also aims to support SME’s to innovate and increase private sector investment opportunities. Projects that could be included within this theme are:

  • Support to help those people starting in work to get the skills to access employment
  • Support to help people improve their skills and gain new qualifications
  • Support for new and emerging businesses to set up and thrive in the District
  • Support for existing businesses to grow and diversify
  • A scheme of grants to support local businesses
  • Support for Low Carbon technologies and techniques
Communities, Health and Wellbeing

This theme aims to strengthen our social fabric and foster a sense of local pride and belonging, through investment in activities that enhance physical, cultural and social ties and amenities, such as community infrastructure and local green space and community led projects. It also aims to ensure that residents can access nature, volunteer in their communities and help with mental and physical wellbeing. Options being considered include:

  • Encourage people to try activities and provide the support to enable this
  • Active referrals and social prescribing initiatives for most vulnerable in our communities
  • Enhanced support for Mental Health and Dementia
Tourism and Visitor Economy

This theme targets promotional activities within the tourism sector and visitor economy and focusses on ensuring increased footfall and visitor numbers to the District. Projects and activities could include:

  • Link into Leicestershire-wide visitor campaigns to encourage people to come to the District and better understand what we have to offer
  • Trialling and development of events and festivals that encourage visitors and locals
  • Sustainable tourism
  • Culture, arts and heritage
Environment and Infrastructure

This focuses on building robust, resilient and safe neighbourhood, through high quality investment in quality places that people want to live work, play and learn. There are opportunities to explore infrastructure improvements within the District to encourage active and sustainable travel (notably cycling and walking). This theme also considers community safety, vulnerable residents (including those at risk of homelessness) and environmental sustainability. Options could include:

  • Early response to residents at risk of homelessness (In particular families)
  • Rural mobility / connectivity improvements
  • Improvements to enhance community safety, such as CCTV
  • Sustainable transport hubs, such as Narborough Station
  • Environmental community led projects
Employability and Skills

This final theme focuses on ensuring that people furthest from the labour market by providing cohesive local tailored support including success to basic skills. Activities could include:

  • Employment support for economically inactive residents to get into work, specifically targeting the 20-24 age bracket and graduate apprenticeships
  • Tailored support for people in employment to progress and increase their life chances.
  • Digital skills and inclusion for all
Last updated 22 July 2022
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