England’s Economic Heartland (EEH) is a strategic partnership between local authorities and local enterprise partnerships (LEPs) within the region stretching from Swindon and Oxfordshire in the west to Cambridgeshire in the east, and from Northamptonshire down to Hertfordshire. It includes the so-called ‘Oxford-Cambridge Arc’, identified by the government in 2019 as an area of significant economic potential.
These types of strategic partnerships between local businesses and the public sector ensure that government strategies reflect the needs of businesses within the area, and enable those businesses to exert an influence over government decision-making.
The advantages of strategic partnerships
To date, England’s 38 LEPs have supported the construction of 92,300 new homes, leveraged over £7.6bn in private investment, supported over 196,000 businesses and created over 180,600 new jobs.
LEPs conduct research, drive local economic priorities, undertake activities to promote business growth and job creation, and essentially ensure a cohesive, joined up approach to economic strategy development. Without them, it would be much more difficult to achieve real change that simultaneously benefits the public and private sectors, and contributes to consistent economic growth.
If your business is within the EEH region – how does that benefit you?’
With a population of 5.1m and 280,000 businesses generating around £160bn GVA, individuals and businesses within EEH already benefit from a modern economy with excellent opportunities in high-value growth areas such as engineering, science, technology and R&D.
However, this growth is outpacing infrastructure investment and development, meaning that future opportunities could be limited by poor transport networks and a lack of digital infrastructure. As a result, the partnership published its draft transport strategy this year, outlining a “step-change in approach” to address the challenges faced by the transport system and detailing the investment pipeline for the achievement of the strategy’s objectives, including:
- Decarbonisation of the transport system
- Investment in digital infrastructure, particularly within rural communities
- Investment in active travel and shared transport solutions
- Reducing environmental impact of freight & logistics industry while ensuring business needs continue to be met
- Reducing reliance on private cars and increasing connectivity for deprived communities to reduce place-based inequalities.
As such, the EEH partnership is focused on tackling barriers to the growth that your business may face in the future, while actively focusing on the government’s 2050 net-zero carbon target. It’s a strategy that combines to benefit both government and local business.
A modern law firm for modern businesses
As the only law firm with three offices within EEH (Milton Keynes, Bedford and Cambridge) we’ve benefited from this thriving business environment and are in a prime position to offer legal advice and guidance that will help other businesses achieve their potential. During the coronavirus pandemic, digital infrastructure has not only been key to the continued delivery of our services via technology such as WhatsApp, Zoom, Skype and Facetime, but also to the continued success, and even survival, of many of our business clients. Moving forwards, our aims are perfectly aligned with EEH’s: helping businesses to thrive in this new digital era and assisting them in becoming competitive players on the UK, and global, stage.
Our specialist lawyers are well placed to assist local businesses in moving forwards following this period of uncertainty, and have a deep understanding of the issues particular to this region. Tying in EEH’s current focus on transport and infrastructure, our specialist Road Transport & Logistics team have been working with local logistics companies during the pandemic to keep essential supplies moving throughout the UK. The team is also on hand to assist firms with regulatory and environmental transportation issues (for example, the decarbonisation of transport as set out in the draft transport strategy).
Meanwhile, our expert Corporate & Commercial team is here to help you get back on your feet following the COVID-19 pandemic, with services such as corporate reorganization and restructuring, insolvency and corporate recovery.
Get in touch
To see how we can help your business reach its potential and contribute towards the economic aims of EEH, please contact us at email@example.com or call one of our local offices.