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Economy, enterprise and skills

Building a thriving, green and inclusive economy

Devon Place Board Minutes – 19 July 2023


Last Updated


Melanie Sealey, Keir Duffin, Alison Hayward, Andrew Wood, Suzanne Bond, Chris Shears, David Boocock, Dominie Dunbrook, Heather Hillman, Jamie Evans, Ian Collinson, Sarah Jane Mackenzie-Shapland, Sean Kearney, Tim Child, Zoe Lentell, Phill Adams, Eifion Jones, Hannah Keyte (Minutes)


Adrian Welsh, Chris Brook, Chris Fuller, Chris Shears, Dan James, Dave Bartram, Jamie Hulland, Neil Blaney, Richard Marsh

1. Rural England Prosperity Fund (REPF) and UKSPF Year 2 – Update / Discussion

North Devon and Torridge have received their UKSPF year 2 allocation and underspend from year 1. Looking to run a joint scheme through North Devon Plus similar to a ‘Leader’ style programme.

Mid Devon have launched their REPF Grants Programme and funding has been received. Running a couple of smaller scale direct delivery grant funds but majority around ‘Leader’ style grant programme.

Chris Shears advised UKSPF Team have said LAs are able to overspend this financial year and claim back through allocation for next financial year.

Eifion Jones attended to present a LEP proposal for UKSPF using some unallocated Growth Deal Capital Funds. LEP have had discussions with Plymouth, Torbay and Somerset and want to speak to Devon Districts to prevent duplication of programmes. Suggestion this could be used as top up funding.

ACTION: Eifion Jones to circulate a briefing via email allowing districts to consider and feedback. LEP internal sign off required – intending to take this to the Internal Investment Committee on 1st August 2023.

2. LUF Round 3 – Current position / discussion – Keir Duffin

Keir Duffin has been advised there may be changes to the next round of LUF funding, however this is yet to be confirmed / communicated. There is a lack of clarity thus making it difficult to plan and support districts with this.

Suzanne Bond is unable to provide any more clarity on this at present.

3. Economy / Devolution Update / discussion – Phil Adams

CEX and Leaders have been involved in discussions and are currently in the latter stages of trying to agree text. Due to complexities around sign off from departments, looking unlikely this will be ready for recess but instead aiming for early September.

Timetable for delivery – if we can conclude the text in early Autumn, looking at a consultation in early Winter. We remain in negotiation stages until a deal has been formally agreed.

Discussion around potential amendment to the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill last week, to create pathways for districts becoming voting members of CCAs. Unsure on the outcome of this yet.

Suzanne Bond thanked Phill Adams for all his work leading this.

4. Devon Coastal and Market Towns Urban Renewal / Phase 2 – Keir Duffin

Regeneration Groups were established in 8 coastal / market towns and delivered quick win projects to allow communities to engage.

Outputs – match funding was forecast at £50k however achieved approx. £223k. 7 Regeneration Boards were created, 8 Regeneration Strategies were created, and 8 Business Cases were developed.

24 quick wins were forecast however it was agreed with districts and regeneration groups that they would prefer bigger quick wins and therefore are able to achieve more. Considering this, 12 quick wins were created.

Quick win outputs include 128 businesses supported directly, 12 jobs created, 12 jobs safeguarded, and 15 jobs supported.

A regeneration best practice document is available and has been shared previously.

DCC now looking to move into phase 2 of delivery, taking all projects from the regeneration strategy and supporting and delivering where appropriate, and also acting as a key stakeholder to take this forward for the next year through to summer 2024.

Keir Duffin thanked everyone for their support and was encouraged to see the level of positive engagement moving this forward in a partnership model.

5. Any Other Business

These meetings have been rescheduled to Wednesdays following feedback that Monday mornings caused multiple clashes for attendees. The DPB / OPE Shared agenda was piloted and a form will be circulated in due course to obtain feedback for future meetings including frequency, content, etc.

Future Meeting Dates

Wednesday 8th November 2pm – 4pm