Four new economy-boosting projects across parts of North Notts have been awarded almost £4m in Government funding. They aim to help more local people back into work and support businesses following the pandemic.
The Government ‘s £200m UK Community Fund is designed to level up communities with the biggest need by funding projects which improve skills and support local business recovery.
The successful Nottinghamshire projects will all operate across three of the Government’s priority areas of Bassetlaw, Mansfield and Newark and Sherwood:
• More than £1.7m goes to the East Midlands Accelerator, led by the East Midlands Chamber, which aims to bring together the region’s universities, local authorities and specialist sector business support to help local people and businesses to recover from the pandemic.
This includes supporting new entrepreneurs , helping businesses meet low carbon targets and boosting digital skills.
• Good Work, led by South Yorkshire Housing Association, receives around £543K to support people with barriers to finding work, including poor mental and physical health.
• More than £1.2m is awarded to Newstart, led by Groundwork, a project which will trial and evaluate a wage-subsidy based employment programme, targeting those facing significant personal barriers and supporting local businesses to take them on.
• Volunteer It Yourself , will now get £459k as part of its work supporting young people aged 16-24.
Young people will learn new trade skills by helping renovate community buildings and venues in need of improvement.
They'll also be mentored by trade professionals to help them gain qualifications, opening doors to higher-level training and employment.
Nottinghamshire County Council led the call for projects locally, encouraging and supporting potential applications which will aimed to benefit people and businesses in the government’s target areas of Bassetlaw, Mansfield and Newark & Sherwood. This is based on an index of economic measures around productivity, household income, unemployment, skills and population density.
Nottinghamshire County Council leader, Cllr Ben Bradley MP, said,
“This is great news that Nottinghamshire has secured a decent slice of this funding. These projects are set to deliver real change for our communities by helping improve job skills, particularly for young people, to help businesses to thrive and grow, and to help regenerate our key communities.
“It’s vital that local projects are getting this investment to help those hardest-hit by the pandemic back into work and to help local business growth.”
Diane Beresford, Deputy Chief Executive at East Midlands Chamber, said,
“We are delighted our bid has been successful and believe it could have a transformative impact for so many businesses in Nottinghamshire.
"The idea is to enhance and improve access to the existing support out there for businesses - particularly those most affected by the pandemic.
“The East Midlands Accelerator project will look at what the needs are locally in these three districts and seek to address them with targeted, bespoke support that brings together key stakeholders across the region.
"Many businesses are aware of the need to decarbonise, and want to be greener, but unsure about how to get there. We'll therefore be helping them to make the first big steps towards a sustainable future, enabling them to meet low-carbon targets - while also boosting key skillsets that will help firms grow in a digital world."
Cllr Bradley added,
“We hope this funding will open doors to further investment. We know there’s more opportunities yet to come through other Government funding designed to level-up our communities, bringing greater prosperity and growth to the County.”
Earlier this summer, 37 projects were received by the County Council, bidding for £29.2M of UK Community Renewal Funding in total. Nine projects were put forward after meeting the local priorities and going through a rigorous assessment process.
The Council will now work with the successful bidders to ensure the delivery of these projects, and work with the unsuccessful bids to see what other options are available to secure investment in the County.