Eden, Cumbria, The Lake District – A natural choice for business

Cumbrian businesses encouraged to tap into EU funding allocation

07 March 2017

Cumbria’s strategic economic body is calling on local businesses and organisations to ensure they take full advantage of the EU funding available to the county up until 2020.

Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership is helping to manage and administer a range of EU funded projects throughout 2017 designed to boost business growth, enterprise and skills development.

Cumbria is a recipient of funding from the European Structural Investment Funds (ESIF) programme, which includes the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), European Social Fund (ESF) and European Agriculture Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD).

A new website – www.cumbriaesif.co.uk – has been launched to help potential applicants see what is available to them and how they can access each of the funding streams and their relevant programmes.

This year will see a number of ongoing and new investment programmes delivered under the European Regional Development Fund, including funding rounds for International Trade Support, Advanced Manufacturing Support and the Cumbria Growth Hub to help business start ups.

Innovation is being supported by the Cumbria Innovations Platform and Eco-Innovation Cumbria projects, whilst Kingmoor Park is also due to benefit from direct ERDF assistance.

Under the European Social Fund ESF, several initiatives are either underway or to be launched shortly.  These include the Inspira led NEET reduction and skills support for the unemployed projects, as well as the G4S Unemployment Support Programme.  The Carlisle College led consortia, The Edge, will continue to deliver skills support for workforce development, apprenticeships and higher level skills.

Jackie Arnold, a board member of Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership and chair of the ESIF committee which sets the strategic direction of how funds are allocated, says: “Many organisations do not realise that there is funding available to them, nor is there a broader understanding of how EU money is actually being delivered on the ground here in Cumbria and the support available to them in that regard.

“Cumbria LEP and its partners play a key role in determining how EU funds are invested throughout the county.  These are highly beneficial programmes and projects which continue to support business growth and innovation, create jobs and improve skills levels.

“We need to ensure that the county spends its remaining EU funding resources wisely, so business networks need to be aware of these opportunities and have the support in place in order that they can submit strong applications.”

For further information on European Funding in Cumbria, please contact Corinne Watson at Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership by emailing corinne.watson@cumbria.gov.uk or visit the new website at www.cumbriaesif.co.uk