Transforming the Solent: A £2.4 billion plan for growth

Solent LEP hope to unlock investment for the Solent area worth £2.4 billion and create 15,000 new jobs by 2020.


This in from the Solent LEP, in their own words. Ed

The Solent Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) has submitted its draft Strategic Economic Plan to the Government – a £2.4 billion plan to drive growth across the region to 2020.

Developed through extensive consultation with local stakeholders, the ambitious plan is the key to unlocking a Local Growth Deal for the region.

Called Transforming the Solent, the plan builds on the success of the City Deal and the founding vision of the LEP, with more ambitious targets and aims to focus investment on economic sectors that need to develop the most to accelerate growth.

The plans
As well as the continued development of the marine economy, the Solent Enterprise Zone and the plans for a new development north of Fareham, called Welborne, the plan targets investment at six priority areas.

  • Supporting new businesses, enterprise and ensuring SME survival and growth.
  • Enabling infrastructure priorities including land assets, transport and housing, reducing flood risk and improving access to superfast broadband.
  • Establishing a single inward investment model to encourage companies to open new sites in the region, supported by effective marketing.
  • Investing in skills to establish a sustainable pattern of growth, ensuring local residents are equipped to take up the jobs that are created and businesses can source local skills and labour to underpin growth.
  • Developing strategic sectors and clusters of marine, aerospace and defence, advanced manufacturing, engineering, transport and logistics businesses, low carbon and the visitor economy.
  • Building on the Solent’s substantial knowledge assets to support innovation and build innovative capacity in the Solent area to stimulate growth in Solent businesses and in new high growth sectors, particularly linked to our HE excellence.

15,000 new jobs by 2020
Among the targets set out to be achieved by 2020 is creation of 15,000 new jobs and 1,000 new businesses.

Gary Jeffries, chairman of the Solent LEP, said:

“It’s called Transforming the Solent and that is exactly what we intend to do. We believe we can unlock investment for the Solent area worth £2.4 billion. This plan has been put together to respond directly to the priorities identified by local business and I am confident it will deliver impressive results.

“We are targeting our resources on those areas that not only need it most but promise the biggest potential to drive growth, create jobs and develop our economy.”

There will be further work with Government and local partners before the final plan is submitted on 31 March 2014.

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Image: © Tax Brackets

Thursday, 30th January, 2014 4:35pm



Filed under: Business, Island-wide, Isle of Wight Council, Isle of Wight News, Top story

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5 Comments on "Transforming the Solent: A £2.4 billion plan for growth"

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Tony Compton


Don’t get carried away this covers a pretty big area. New businesses, enterprise and SME’s probably means outside the Isle of Wight.This includes infrastructure priorities including land assets, transport and housing. It really is a small amount of money so won’t stretch far. There has been significant flood risk on the island too. Where would the single inward investment model be, the new enterprise zone on the… Read more »

Remember SEEDA and the IoW Enterprise Hub? Both long dead thanks to govt. cuts! How long will the Solent LEP quango last?


The News Portsmouth January 29, 2014.Portsmouth and Gosport to apply for Assisted Area Status.Minister For Portsmouth Michael Fallon also BIS Minister.Will this take Funding away from the Isle of Wight? Simon and Sal could this happen?


Does this put Michael Fallon in a difficult position because of being the BIS Minister for Assisted Area Status and Minister for Portsmouth?Remember parts of the Isle Of Wight are on the Assisted Area Status Draft Map.