Cash boost for jobs at Bristol Road Hub
Millions of pounds of extra funding are to be invested locally in support of new jobs and high tech connectivity, as part of an additional Growth Deal covering the Somerset and Devon area.
The Government has announced that it has awarded the area £65.2 million of additional funding, with Sedgemoor getting a good percentage of the money. This includes:
£4 m additional funding for Bridgwater’s Low Carbon Innovation Centre, currently being constructed on the A38 in Bridgwater Without, creating up to 170 further jobs and providing 20,000 sq ft of additional office and work space in the parish; as well as new investment to enhance superfast broadband coverage, further extending the reach of the ongoing Devon and Somerset programme to those communities not already covered.
£5m to fund an Unlocking Growth Fund to enable strategic employment sites and assets to be fast-tracked and brought forward.
The latest funds awarded to the Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership (HotSW) come on top of £130 million agreed last summer, of which Sedgemoor secured approximately £30m. Investments include:
£2m to unlock employment opportunities at J24 of the M5 and allow the development of Huntworth Roundabout in 2015, with the potential to create 2,000 jobs starting this year.
£11.5m investment to enhanced skills and training capacity and new facilities at Bridgwater and other Local Colleges;
£2.5m to enhance Bridgwater Station, improve cycling connectivity and improve road links to Hinkley Point;
£4m to take forward the initial construction of the Low Carbon Innovation Centre in the parish on Bristol Road, bringing forward 200 jobs and creating new office and collaboration facilities.
£5m of funding to accelerate housing development locally, providing support to sites in Highbridge and Bridgwater.
A council spokesman said. ‘We are delighted to see that Government has once again singled out … Sedgemoor, as a location which can build on investment. We have made strong progress locally over recent years to grow the economy and secure new opportunities, working closely with our partners. Today’s package reinforces that pattern, adding millions extra to the £30m already secured for growth last summer’
‘In particular, we are delighted to see the additional investment in the Low Carbon Innovation Centre, which will now become Somerset’s largest centre for innovation and enterprise activity. The centre will provide a significant new asset for the town and leaves us in a strong position to secure opportunities emerging form Hinkley Point and the wider energy sector’.