Agenda item - Chair's Communications
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11.1 The Chair provided the following Communications:
“On behalf of The Board I would like to welcome Cllr Gillian Brown, leader of Arun District Council, and Chief Executive Nigel Lynn as observers today.
Some of you may be aware that Professor Michael Davies has recently stepped down from his role as Pro-Vice-Chancellor at the University of Sussex, and therefore as the University of Sussex representative on this Board. I’m sure all Board members will want to join me in thanking Michael for his support and contribution since the Board’s inception in 2014.
Last month Cllr Andy Smith and I attended a successful tour of the Newhaven Enterprise Zone and were given an update by Programme Director Corrine Day a year after ‘go live’.
During the visit, we saw progress on some of the £30 million that has already been invested in the area - with critical flood defences created, new business units built and key regeneration sites unlocked. The tour also took in the site of the new £23 million port access road, which received £10 million of government funding in August. This will provide direct access to the East Quay area of Newhaven Port unlocking 80,000 square metres of business space, generating up to 1,500 jobs and taking HGV traffic away from unsuitable roads in the town.
On 26th September the 5G testbed was officially launched at the Digital Catapult Centre Brighton. The 5G testbed will allow small businesses to benefit from state of the art 5G mobile wireless communications, and provide space to test and explore the potential new applications of 5G. It will also help the City Region to support delivery of a key aim within Government’s Industrial Strategy, which is for the UK to become a world-leader in 5G technology.
The Greater Brighton ‘Expression of Interest’ to the Cultural Development Fund was successfully shortlisted in late July and the deadline for the final bid submission is 19th October. The final bid will focus on developing a series of networked Creative & Cultural Accelerator Zones. Key aims will include; bringing forward affordable spaces; delivering business support and training focussed on the needs of employers; and supporting cultural and creative leaders to network within and across sectors.
The DfT announced at the end of September which non-mayoral cities will progress to the next step of the £840m TCF investment fund. In total, the DfT has shortlisted ten ‘city regions’ but unfortunately the Greater Brighton‘s submission, focused on the A259 corridor, was not one of those ten.
Initial feedback from the DfT confirmed that competition was high (approximately 30 applications for 10 places), and that the evidence provided in support of our bid was not as compelling as some of the other bids. However, it was a great achievement that Greater Brighton partners, in collaboration with colleagues from East and West Sussex County Councils, and other agencies, produced such a credible bid in the timeframes and the proposals put forward were considered to be potentially appropriate for similar, future funding opportunities when these become available”.