New £30m cash brings jobs hope for South Yorkshire

Cllr Steve Houghton CBE, Leader of Barnsley Council,
Cllr Steve Houghton CBE, Leader of Barnsley Council,
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A new £30m pot of Government funding for the Sheffield City Region will help create ‘thousands’ of new jobs, politicians have claimed.

The money, announced yesterday, is an extension of the area’s Growth Deal with the Government which saw £297m committed last July.

Politicians say it could created up to 4,400 new jobs in South Yorkshire.

It is intended the money will partly be used to extend the Local Enterprise Partnership’s business investment and support programme.

The agreement has been hailed by David Cameron and Nick Clegg, as well as other local politicians who described it as the next step in Sheffield’s ‘devolution journey’ to gain more local powers over funding decisions.

Councillor Sir Stephen Houghton CBE, chairman of the Sheffield City Region Combined Authority, said: “The deal will need to be approved by Government after the General Election in May but we’re confident this investment will be considered important by ministers of any political party as it is based on what our economy needs to grow.

“Work is already underway to maximise our funding and create thousands of new jobs and training opportunities for local people. This additional £30 million funding will accelerate and enhance this crucial work.”

The money is to be invested in the area between 2016 and 2021. Over the lifetime of the overall deal, it is estimated 15,000 new jobs could be created and 12,000 new homes built.

Money will also go towards supporting infrastructure work on the Midland Mainline to cut rail journey times from Sheffield and Chesterfield to London, as well as speeding up the delivery of the rail replacement programme on Sheffield’s Supertram network.

New proposed projects include the creation of a new Rail Engineering Campus in Doncaster, bringing together a new £50m Centre of Excellence with the HS2 National College and other major facilities.

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