£17m European funding programme launched

More than £17 million of European funding is being made available for projects which promote economic growth and create jobs across the Marches.

The pot is part of the next round of funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) that was announced this month by Local Growth Minister James Wharton. Applications are now being invited for projects focused on research andinnovation, business competitiveness, low carbon and information communication technology (ICT).

The largest amount of funding on offer is £9.5m allocated to helping the region's small and medium-sized enterprises to become more competitive. And £2.6m has been allocated to improve connectivity by extending broadband deployment.

Projects being considered for the business competitiveness funding need to promote entrepreneurship, support the creation of products, services and development and growth in regional, national and international markets.

Read more

Riga visit for first time exporters


Businesses in the Marches looking to export for the first time are being invited to consider business opportunities in Latvia, with a visit to Riga being organised by UK Trade & Industry later this year. More details

Food & drink sector challenges


Red tape, price pressures and issues around staffing are some of the key sticking points that impact on the potential growth of the region’s food and drink businesses, according to research carried out by the Marches LEP. Read more

Councillor joins Hereford Enterprise Zone board

Herefordshire Councillor Graham Powell has pledged to continue building a “fantastic future” for Hereford’s Enterprise Zone as he takes up a new role on the organisation’s management board.

He made the comments as he toured Skylon Park with Zone Board Chairman Bill Jackson to view the latest developments on the site in Rotherwas.

Councillor Powell, Cabinet Member for Economy & Corporate Services, will serve on the six-strong board that oversees the strategic development of the Zone. Read more


Rural businesses working within the tourism sector across the Marches are being invited to bid for a share of funding that is focused on the development of visitor attractions, tourist information, recreational infrastructure and small scale infrastructure.  

The funds are part of the RDPE (Rural Development Programme for England) Growth Programme. If you are interested, click here for more information.
The Marches Investment Fund, made possible via an award from the Government’s Growing Places Fund, provides capital loan funding for infrastructure projects. Find out more here.

MLEP has secured £67,000 in Government funding to investigate and develop plans for state of the art shared heating systems that could cut costs and promote energy saving.

The funding from the Department of Energy and Climate Change will go towards feasibility studies into potential schemes in Hereford, Shrewsbury, Whitchurch and Telford. MLEP will provide the remaining £33,000 towards the £100,000 overall cost.
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