Business Cases / Public Sector Funding
Business Cases / Public Sector Funding
Levelling Up Fund
The Levelling Up Fund (LUF) is investing in capital infrastructure that improves everyday life and has a tangible impact on local places. For round one in 2021, the fund invested in projects across three themes: (i) regenerating town centres and high streets, (ii) upgrading local transport and (iii) investing in cultural and heritage assets.
AspinallVerdi has worked on masterplans, investment prospectus and business cases for various LUF bids including: Catterick Garrison, Ashington, Worcester and Blackburn.
The £3.6bn Towns Fund was launched at the end of 2019 to unleash the full economic potential of over 100 places and level up communities throughout the country with places being able to receive a significant investment of up to £25 million.
The private sector has an integral role to play in making these Town Deals a success – driving investment and value for money and ensuring that funding delivers the jobs, businesses and homes our towns need to thrive for generations to come.
AspinallVerdi has worked on masterplans, investment prospectus and business cases for various Towns Fund bids including: Wakefield, Blyth, Worcester and St Helens.
Going forward the Towns Fund will be delivered through two elements:
- Town Deals, which aim to regenerate towns and deliver long-term economic and productivity growth through investments in urban regeneration, planning and land use, skills, heritage and enterprise infrastructure; and
- The Future High Streets Fund, which aims to renew and reshape town centres and high streets in England in a way that drives growth and ensures future sustainability.
Future High Streets Fund
The Future High Streets Fund (FHSF) is a £675 million capital and revenue grant fund allocated to local authorities on a competitive basis. Its core aim is to provide infrastructure investment to help renew and reshape town centres and high streets in a way that improves the experience, drives growth, and ensures future sustainability.
Change on high streets is not a new phenomenon. The Prospectus describes how over many years the ways in which people interact with their high streets and town centres have constantly evolved, e.g. out-of-town shopping centres in the 1980s. However, the speed of change has increased dramatically in recent decades. The unprecedented growth of online shopping in particular has had a big effect on high streets.
FHSF bids that we have supported include Heanor in Derbyshire, Blyth in Northumberland, Wakefield, Birkenhead and St Neots in Huntingdonshire.
UK Shared Prosperity Fund
The UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) aims to increase life chances and build pride in place across the UK, by empowering places to invest in local priorities across three priority areas: communities and place, people and skills, and local business.
This will lead to significant, visible and tangible improvements to the places where people work and live, supporting town centres, high streets, cultural assets and green spaces that have deteriorated over time. This new fund will give communities up and down the UK more reasons to be proud of where they live.
The UKSPF will support the UK Government’s wider commitment to level up all parts of the UK and align with the levelling up ‘missions’.
Mayoral Funding Settlements and Growth Deal
The Levelling Up White Paper sets an agenda to usher in a ‘devolution revolution’, introducing a new model for counties with mayors or “governors”. Government is encouraging deeper devolution deals with the West Midlands and Greater Manchester combined authorities. These deals will act as the blueprint for other mayoral combined authorities (MCAs) to follow, with bids for more powers welcome.
Government is also looking to recast the geography of MCAs, where necessary, to ensure there is greater economic coherence. Nine new County Deals areas are to be invited to extend devolution to much more of England.
AspinallVerdi supports the combined authorities on professional frameworks working on growth funds, brownfield land fund etc.
We have worked alongside Homes England in respect of their various funding streams including the Kickstart programme, Build-to-rent, Custom Build Service Plots, Local Growth Fund, Large Sites infrastructure programme and Housing Infrastructure Fund (HIF) etc. We are on the Homes England Property Panel and Multidisciplinary Panel of advisors.
We have provided detailed due diligence on various Housing Infrastructure Fund (HIF) projects for Homes England. Projects appraised include: Colchester Braintree Borders Garden Community c.£230 million of HIF funding to unlock 15,000 homes; Colchester Tendring Borders Garden Community c.£100 million funding to unlock 6,500 homes; and A320 North of Woking c.£44 million scheme to unlock 11 sites.
We are working on various HIF Recovery schemes including St Cuthberts 10,000 home Garden Community, Carlisle; and Oxfordshire County Council Didcot Garden Town HIF1 (Housing Infrastructure Fund) – including new River Thames crossing - project and the HIF2 A40 Smart Corridor project.
Combined Authorities / Local Enterprise Partnerships
We have experience of the various Regional Growth Funds, City Deals / Devolution, Local Growth Funds, Growing Places Funds, Business Growth Programmes etc. Our work involves advising on the cashflow and loan/grant funding.
We have an extensive track record of European Funding going back to the 2000-2006 and 2007-2013 ERDF (European Regional Development Fund) programmes and the current 2014-2020 ESIF (European Structural Investment Funds) programme. We are part of the Technical Assistance steering group for Leeds City Region and on the panel of expert advisors for the Sheffield City Region executive team. We provide due diligence services to Managing Authorities and also advise developers on applications. We are still advising on JESSICA (Joint European Support for Sustainable Investment in City Areas) revolving funding. We are retained by CBRE Investors on the SCR Jessica Fund which was established in 2013 and has now had its first round of investments fully repaid and is reinvesting over £25.5 million back into the Sheffield City Region economy.
We also advise on lottery funded capital projects. For example, we are retained by the National Lottery Heritage Fund to advise on their Heritage Enterprise programme. We have also worked on Townscape Heritage projects nationally.
The management and co-ordination of often complex procurement processes from a private sector tenderer perspective in order to deliver a successful proposal in the development/regeneration sector. We have the commitment and enthusiasm to advise on procurements which can sometimes run over multiple stages.
Partnerships and Development Agreements
The negotiation of development agreements and shareholder agreements in order to procure development schemes and joint ventures. We have experience of handling complex negotiations including the establishment of KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators) and targets that are challenging, but achievable.
Business Plan Monitoring and Evaluation
The monitoring and evaluation of projects against the business plan. This includes the ‘draw-down’ of public sector funding as work progresses on-site. We have experience of monitoring complex urban regeneration projects on behalf of both the private and public sectors.
For further information about our services browse our case studies