The Heart of the South West (HotSW) covering Torbay as well as Devon, Plymouth, and Somerset is in the second wave of areas to benefit from working with the Government to develop their local Industrial Strategies, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has announced.

HotSW is one of six areas to get this vote of confidence which means the Government will be investing more to raise productivity and prosperity in these localities. The HotSW Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and the HotSW Joint Committee will drive forward the Local Industrial Strategy and oversee its delivery.

Torbay Council’s Board LEP Member, Cllr David Thomas, said: “This is wonderful news for Torbay, the aim of the local Industrial Strategies is to put local people and businesses in the driving seat, allowing local leaders to harness the strengths of their own areas in a targeted approach. By working with our partners across the region we can strive to provide greater opportunities for our communities.”

Chair of the Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership, Steve Hindley CBE DL said: “We’re delighted with this announcement and what it will mean to the Heart of the South West. To be on the Government’s list for the second wave of Industrial Strategies has been our biggest ask this year, so is a real testament to our performance, as seen by Government, that they’ve given us this mandate.

We must now take the reins and harness the opportunity set out for us; delivering the Heart of the South West Productivity Strategy Action Plan, which will now be known as the Local Industrial Strategy, is the key task that we have to deliver in partnership with the HotSW Joint Committee. I look forward to working with our partners to gather pace and momentum to show the Government what we can do when we work closely together, and to rise to the challenge they’ve set us by investing their confidence in our area.”

Councillor David Fothergill, Chair of the Heart of the South West Joint Committee, said: “This is great news for the whole region and a testament to how all the authorities in the HotSW area have worked together and performed in the past.

“The Joint Committee is all about improving productivity so that we can improves lives and provide more opportunities for our residents. This shows the confidence the Government has in us and is a massive boost to the Joint Committee’s commitment to see productivity double in the next 20 years.

The Heart of the South West Joint Committee is made up of council leaders and other lead representatives of county, unitary and district councils across Devon and Somerset along with Dartmoor and Exmoor National Parks, the Local Enterprise Partnership and local Clinical Commissioning Groups.

It is a means through which the authorities and organisations can work together to improve productivity and continue to work with Government on other policy agendas.

The Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership is a strong and dynamic business-led partnership between the private sector, local authorities, universities and colleges. Its purpose is to lead and influence economic growth, job creation and prosperity across the Heart of the South West area covering Devon, Plymouth, Somerset and Torbay.

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