£15.5 million fund announced for Heart of the South West

Rural businesses across the Heart of the South West area are to benefit from over £15.5 million of funding – the largest amount allocated to any area in the country.

The Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership has been allocated £15,540,333 from the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) to stimulate and boost the economy through rural businesses.

The allocation comes from a fund of £177 million being divided between the 39 Local Enterprise Partnerships from across the country and will be available between 2015 and 2020.

Chris Garcia, Chief Executive of the Heart of the South West LEP said: “This allocation, which is the largest to any single LEP in England, is hugely important and reflects that fact that a large proportion of businesses in our area are rural.

“The funding will help towards building and strengthening the local economy.  We are currently developing plans on how the fund will be spent through a detailed strategy.

“We are working closely with our partners and stakeholders, including the agricultural sector, to ensure this strategy reflects the area’s greatest needs in terms of developing and supporting business and the community.”