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Latest News

Bay boosted by successful Coastal Communities Fund bid

26th January 2015

Categories: Latest News

Torbay Council and Torbay Development Agency have successfully secured £1.575m of investment through the Transforming Torbay Coastal Communities Fund bid.

The partnership has a unique understanding of the needs of the Bay’s businesses and economy. Coupled with a strong track record of delivery, this contributed heavily to the success of the bid.

Torbay’s Mayor, Gordon Oliver, said: “Securing nearly £1.6m of funding is excellent news for the Bay. The boost provided to businesses and the economy through the Transforming Torbay Programme will create 230 jobs and support indigenous business growth, while attracting investment to the area.

“This funding will also support the Events Programme delivered by Torbay Council through the Events Forum, which will attract new visitors to the Bay and extend the visitor season.”

Encompassing three projects, Route to Retail, the Events Programme and the Electronics & Photonics Innovation Centre, the programme is designed to address the immediate challenges faced by Torbay, while at the same time building on Torbay’s assets as a place and diversifying the economy for the future.

Torbay is one of the country’s leading areas for electronics and photonics expertise, with the sector currently employing approximately 1000 Full Time Employees.

The Coastal Communities Fund forms part of an £8m funding package to create a flagship Electronics and Photonic Innovation Centre to house equipment, support services, office and clean room space to develop a growing high tech cluster and create higher value and sustainable jobs.

Route to Retail will offer support to start up and existing retail businesses lacking a high street presence. It will enable entrepreneurs, with an online only sales presence, to trade in the town centre and support those already there to better market themselves to customers using new technology and social media.

The Events Programme will deliver four new events including an air and sea show, a gaming event and maritime/boat show. These events will attract new visitors to the Bay and extend the visitor season.

Alan Denby, Director of Economic Strategy and Performance, TDA, said: “The help we are receiving for this programme means we can support the growth and diversification of our core tourism and retail sectors while investing in the knowledge economy for the future. The Transforming Torbay programme directly contributes to the aims of the Torbay Economic Strategy, supporting over 100 businesses and enabling us to deliver a high quality innovation centre supporting the growth of high value jobs.

The opening of the South Devon Link Road in late 2015 means the programme is ideally positioned to capitalise on the improved transport links and use this as a catalyst to reshape the economy.

Martin Foulger, Chair of the Torbay Hi Tech Forum said: “This is great news for the electronics and photonics industry in Torbay and will enable us to move the Innovation Centre from a planning stage into reality. The Forum has been instrumental in supporting this project and members will be excited to see it become a reality.”

For more details see our dedicated Transforming Torbay page.

See the latest news in hi tech in Torbay on the Hi Tech Forum page.

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