£6.165M cash boost for West Kent to help create local jobs and growth

West Kent is to receive a further £6.165M of government cash to help create jobs, support businesses and create new growth opportunities.

Andrew Percy MP, Minister at the Department for Communities and Local Government, who has responsibility for local growth, today announced a government cash injection of £102 million for capital projects for the South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SELEP), which covers East Sussex, Essex, Kent, Medway, Southend and Thurrock with a number of West Kent projects are set to benefit.

Minister, Andrew Percy said: ”From Southend to East Sussex, today’s £102 million investment will support the delivery of new homes and jobs right across the South East Local Enterprise Partnership.

“In fact right across the South East, people will benefit from £492 million extra investment thanks to these Growth Deals to create jobs and infrastructure projects of the future.

“These growth deals are a crucial part of our efforts to create an economy that works for everyone, and will ensure every region of the country has the chance to realise its full potential.”

The package of projects to be funded through this round of Local Growth Fund will improve educational attainment, create new jobs and provide the enabling infrastructure to support the delivery of new homes and employment, and will leverage an additional £112m in private sector funding.

The West Kent projects to receive funding are:


·       Fort Halstead redevelopment, Sevenoaks (£1.53m)

·       Leigh Flood Storage Area, Tonbridge (£4.635m)


Peter Fleming, Leader of Sevenoaks District Council, said: “We are pleased that both SELEP and government has seen value in the Fort Halstead project.

“Since DSTL announced they were leaving six years ago we have been working tirelessly with the new owners to make sure the site remains employment led.

After a planning appeal a government inspector agreed and therefore alongside 450 homes any development will have to both resupply the lost jobs and see these delivered in advance of the housing. The funding will allow SDC to work with the owners to help bring these jobs forward, allowing the Fort to remain a major employment site in the district into the future.”

Nicolas Heslop, Leader of Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council, said: “This funding will give us and local people more certainty on the future of flooding in the area.  Knowing that we will be able to deliver much needed measures to increase the capacity of the Leigh Flood Storage Area and in turn reduce flood risk will see significant growth to business and property within communities along the River Medway and this will give peace of mind and a huge boost to those who have been affected by flooding in previous years.”

For more information on Growth Deal projects please visit www.southeastlep.com.



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