European funding confirmed to support innovation, jobs and skills

23 March 2015

The Mayor of London has called on organisations to bid for shares of over £560m of new European funding that is now available to support innovation and businesses in the capital, with a particular focus on projects that can help Londoners into education, employment or training and create new jobs. That funding is set to be matched by contributions from partners including the Skills Funding Agency, Department of Work and Pensions and Big Lottery Fund, which potentially means the programme will be worth over £1.1billion over the next seven years. With London’s population forecast to increase to over 10m by 2030, the funding will support the Mayor’s aims to provide crucial new jobs and skills. The first round of European programmes managed by City Hall has already been used to help 63,000 people into work in London since 2007, supported 15,000 small businesses and leveraged £700m of investment in green infrastructure through the Mayor’s pioneering London Green Fund. Responsibility for managing EU funds in London was devolved to City Hall in 2007. The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “Tens of thousands of Londoners have already been helped into work through these programmes and, as our city continues to grow, this new funding will enable thousands more people to get jobs and boost the capital’s economy.” Examples of previous investments supported by the European Funding include: • The Bad Boys’ Bakery: A social enterprise inside HM Prison Brixton that is helping to rehabilitate and reintegrate prisoners back into society and employment. The bakery has now been set up as a self-sustaining social enterprise that has helped hundreds of former prisoners into work or training. • The London Green Fund: This aims to contribute to achieving the Mayor of London’s target to reduce CO2 emissions by 60% by 2025 and reduce waste going to landfill. Projects the Fund has supported include the UK’s first dedicated plant for recycling post-consumer shopping bags and films; and retrofitting and installing energy saving measures in public buildings. The London Enterprise Panel will recommend where funding is eventually allocated. The CEO of Camden Town Unlimited and Chairman of the LEP’s new London European Committee, Simon Pitkeathley, said: “I hope that both new and experienced organisations will apply for funding, and there will be further opportunities in coming month to bid for funds directly through us or through the programmes managed by our partners.” Details of how to apply for funding can be found at www.gov.uk/european-growth-funding ENDS Notes to editors: • The European Structural and Investment Funds programme in London consists of two separate funds set up by the European Commission but managed by EU Member States : the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the European Social Fund (ESF). • All EU funding for 2007-13 London ESF and ERDF programmes has been committed, projects are running until the end of this year. • For 2014-20, the Government is in the process of agreeing single national ERDF and ESF ‘Operational Programmes’ for England, with funding allocations split across 39 Local Enterprise Partnership areas. Local calls for funds are being launched ahead of formal approval, in order to minimise any gap between 2007-13 and 2014-20 funding rounds. • The Government is the ‘Managing Authority’ for EU funds, but has delegated day-to-day responsibility for London EU programmes to the Greater London Authority – as an ‘Intermediate Body’. • Further information about the calls for funds can be found at www.lep.london or by e-mailing [email protected]