The Department for Business Innovation and Skills describe Local Enterprise Partnerships as ”led by local authorities and businesses across natural economic areas” and set up to ”provide the vision, knowledge and strategic leadership needed to drive sustainable private sector growth and job creation in their area”. Most were set up toward the end of 2010 when the decision to close Regional Development Agencies was taken. They represent a policy move by Government to encourage the strategic drive for growth to come from sub regional partnerships with as much alignment of local partner resource as is possible. LEPs do not carry the budgets that RDA’s had but have been able to bid on a competeitve basis to the Regional Growth Fund, and have determined and managed the Growing Places Fund allocations.
The SSP sits on the Officer Steering Groups for both the Stoke and Staffordshire, and the Greater Birmingham LEPs. Importantly we provide a bridge between the 2 LEPs covering southern Staffordshire and encourage as much collaboration as possible between the LEPs. We also seek to work closley with the Black Country LEP recognising the close economic relationships between the south west of the County and the Black Country.
There are 39 LEPs across England and our area is not unque in being part of 2 LEP geographies – there are 8 other areas where this is also the case reflecting the often complex nature of functioning economic geographies.
Greater Birmingham LEP www.centreofenterprise.com
Stoke and Staffordshire LEP www.stokestaffslep.org.uk