Hopes for hundreds of jobs

THOUSANDS of jobs and millions of pounds of investment could come to Tees Valley if bids for Government funding are successful.

Regeneration chiefs at Tees Valley Unlimited have revealed more details of the 20 bids they have put in to the Regional Growth Fund, asking for almost £80m of support.

Nine of the 20 bids are from companies in the private sector who collectively have plans to invest over £820m within the next three years, creating 1,650 new jobs and safeguarding a further 850 posts.

The remaining 11 involve cover areas including housing, transport and mixed-use regeneration.

Stephen Catchpole, managing director of Tees Valley Unlimited, said: “We anticipated a number of bids coming in at the last minute and that certainly proved to be the case.

“There are a number of exciting bids put forward which have enormous potential to create significant jobs and investment for Tees Valley, so we’re hopeful the Government’s decision-making panel will look favourably upon them.

“I’m also encouraged that there have been a number of collaborative bids by the public and private sector. Joint working is one of our main priorities and something we see as vital to the growth of this area’s economy.

“With an announcement on the successful bids due in the spring, we are now turning our attention to once again working with our public and private sector partners to prepare some equally exciting bids for the second round.”

The combined applications include:

l Two private sector-led proposals representing more than £32m in capital expenditure. They could see more than 1,000 jobs being created and a further 11 safeguarded.  A total of £7.25m from RGF is requested.

l Three public/private partnership proposals to achieve mixed use developments totalling £11.05m in capital expenditure, resulting in 6,516 jobs created and a further 1,216 safeguarded. A total RGF contribution of £5.7m is requested.

l One transport infrastructure project to open up economic opportunities with a total capital expenditure of £12.4m resulting in 375 jobs created and requesting £9.05m RGF support.

l Five public/private sector proposals to address barriers to economic growth. It would need capital expenditure of £60m, resulting in over 2,100 jobs being created and a further 32 safeguarded. A total of £28.9m is requested from RGF.

Exact locations have still to be revealed.

An announcement of successful bids is expected within 50 days.