UK Shared Prosperity Fund
UK Shared Prosperity Fund – investing in St Albans District
The UK Shared Prosperity Fund was launched by central government in early 2022 to support its ‘levelling up’ agenda. All local councils have been allocated a share of the fund to invest in their areas by March 2025.
St Albans District Council has been allocated £1,598,711 over the next three years.
This can be used to support a wide range of interventions to build pride in place and improve life chances, across three investment priorities:
- Community and place
- Supporting local business
- People and skills
To access this funding, we were required to submit an investment plan by 1 August 2022. Providing that our plan is approved by the Government, funding should be released to us in October 2022.
Our investment plan
In discussion with local partners including the voluntary and community sector organisations, business representatives and other key stakeholders, we identified a mix of activities we will deliver to meet our local needs over the next three years.
To maximise the impact of the fund, we set our local criteria and prioritised the activities to include in the investment plan against these. This included making sure that important work that has been receiving EU funding can continue, and focusing on a few large projects that meet the Council’s Corporate Plan objectives.
The prioritised projects are wide ranging and will benefit local residents, communities and businesses:
- Skills training for those furthest away from the labour market - The fund will support three projects each targeting specific groups - young people, people with learning difficulties and disabilities, and people with multiple complex barriers (such as mental health issues, long-term unemployment, ex-offenders, carers). The projects will be managed by the Herts LEP and delivered by partners including Hertfordshire County Council’s Step2Skills unit.
- Supporting local business - Four projects have been prioritised that will help strengthen the local economy. Three of the projects will focus on the following: provision of general business advice focused on SMEs (small medium enterprises); support for start-ups and new businesses; an online advice portal for employers and students. The fourth project is to contribute towards the development of a Hertfordshire Film Office to promote film and TV-activities. The projects will be managed by the Herts LEP and delivered by the LEP or through other partners such as STANTA (St Albans Enterprise Agency).
- Building pride in place and improving wellbeing - Three projects have been prioritised: improving Verulamium Park lake and surrounding area; developing the events programme to reach a wider audience; and building a new community centre in Fleetville. All have an important role in encouraging physical and social activity and are an opportunity to reach some of our most deprived neighbourhoods and communities. However, Verulamium Park and the events programme are also important in attracting visitors to the District.
Information about the Shared Prosperity Fund can be found on the GOV.UK website.
If you need further details or advice please contact SharedProsperity@stalbans.gov.uk.