East Riding of Yorkshire Council has secured over £6.5 million of European Funding to support community development, business growth and enterprise along the Yorkshire Coast, with the majority of funds to be targeted at Bridlington and Scarborough.
A report, due to be considered by East Riding of Yorkshire Council's Cabinet on Tuesday, 17 October, sets out how the Yorkshire Coast Community Led Local Development (CLLD) Programme will be delivered, in partnership with Scarborough Borough Council, and will give local organisations and businesses the opportunity to apply for project grants from the European Social Fund and the European Regional Development Fund.
Council Jane Evison, cabinet portfolio holder for transforming lifestyles at East Riding of Yorkshire Council, said: "This programme has been nearly two years in development and we have had great support from a wide range of partners across the Scarborough and Bridlington area, which has been essential for securing these funds. "We can now continue to work with the local community and businesses to maximise the benefits of the funding, which stand to be significant. By securing these funds now, we are guaranteed that the full programme can be delivered, in spite of the situation with the UK planning to leave the European Union."
York, North Yorkshire and East Riding Local Enterprise Partnership Board Member Colin Mellors said: "I am delighted to see the Yorkshire Coast Community Led Local Development Programme go ahead, enabled by significant support from European Structural Investment Funds. "Transformation of the Yorkshire Coast economy is a priority for this LEP, particularly focused on Scarborough and Bridlington, and this provides huge potential for business growth and skills development to be led by those communities over the next four years."
The programme will run until the end of 2021, even if the UK leaves the EU before that date.
The Yorkshire Coast CLLD Programme is multi-fund grant programme which aims to:
• support business and enterprise growth, sustainability, increase employment and increase commercial floor space built or renovated; and
• help those furthest from the labour market move closer to employment and develop their skills and experience, including improvement to community buildings in target areas.
Councillor Sandra Turner, portfolio holder for human resources, democracy and safer and stronger communities at Scarborough Borough Council, added: "This is great news for our local community in the Scarborough area. There are so many opportunities in the area at the moment and the support available through this programme will help people and business take advantage of them. Examples of projects could be to help people to improve their employability skill, through to supporting business to expand and create new jobs. This will make a huge difference to our communities that will be targeted for support."
A key feature of the programme is the need for it to be 'community led' and a local action group was set up last year to support the development of the programme.
The local action group chairman, Neil Watson, said: "The support and involvement of the local community has been essential to get to this stage of securing the funds for Bridlington, Scarborough and surrounding areas. We have seen the success of similar community-led programmes in recent years, such as Holderness Coast FLAG to support the fishing industry and LEADER aimed at rural communities and business. "The Yorkshire Coast CLLD Programme has the potential to change the economic fortunes of people living in both seaside towns. I look forward to working with both of the councils, committed partners and my colleagues on the local action group to fund projects that will deliver benefits for local people and businesses."
The Yorkshire Coast Community Led Local Development Strategy can be viewed by visiting either www.bridlingtonrenaissance.com or www.scarborough.gov.uk