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Solent LEP champions skills, jobs and opportunities for the region

12 July 2023

Collaborations championing the success of the Solent were highlighted this week as the Solent LEP brought together key partners at two high profile events on Tuesday 11 July.

The Solent LEP Annual Careers Summit connected partners working across education, training and business to support careers and skills development across the region; as well as the Solent’s volunteer Enterprise Advisers, who are recruited from local organisations to work at a strategic level with the senior management teams at schools and colleges to help prepare young people for the world of work.

Speakers at the Summit included Matt Johnson, Director of the South Coast Institute of Technology, Lea Hampton from One Horton Heath and Rich Burns from the Digital Skills partnership.

The same day also saw the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Solent Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), where LEP members, board representatives and key partners reviewed the achievements of the past year and heard more about plans for the future.

Rachael Randall, Chair of the Solent LEP, said: "These events today have brought home how important it is to bring together the range of partners we work with across education, business and local government - all with a shared ambition to ensure our region can thrive and that all those in our communities have opportunities to succeed.

"It was another great turnout at the careers summit. We are incredibly grateful to all those across the education and business sectors who gave their time to collaborate and work to bridge the gap between school, college and the world of work, helping our young people find fulfilling career paths and ensuring businesses have the future skills they need."

"Our AGM was an ideal opportunity to look back on successes of the past year, celebrate the results of collaborations which deliver for our region and share our plans for the Solent economy. I'm delighted with the positive response we've received so far and look forward to continuing to work with partners to deliver what I believe is a very bright future for our region."

Delegates at the Solent LEP Annual General Meeting heard from Councillor Roz Chadd, Deputy Leader of Hampshire County Council about the new Stubbington Bypass, one of the LEP's largest investments through the Government's Local Growth Deal and part of a package of transport improvements designed to improve journey times and boost the local economy.

Councillor Chadd said: "Stubbington Bypass is an excellent example of the positive impact that a strong, joined-up partnership approach can have on an area and its residents and businesses. We were very pleased to jointly fund and work with the Solent LEP and Department for Transport to deliver this key transport infrastructure which will reduce peak time travel congestion and improve journey times on the Gosport Peninsula, reduce traffic volumes in Stubbington village as well as improve air quality for local residents. By making it easier to travel to and from Gosport, the Bypass will also help to boost investment and regenerate the Gosport Peninsula and the Solent Enterprise Zone.”

Stuart Baker, Director, The Solent Cluster and Ralf Rashbrook, The Solent Cluster Venture Manager at ExxonMobil shared plans for The Solent Cluster - a new partnership between the public, private, academic and research communities designed to spearhead the Solent in becoming a leading centre for low carbon investment that will grow the regional economy, protect skilled jobs, and create new employment opportunities.

Anne-Marie Mountifield, Chief Executive of the Solent LEP, one of the founding members of The Solent Cluster said: "The Solent Cluster is a truly transformational opportunity for our region and our communities. There is significant innovation capability here in the South and The Solent Cluster is a platform on which we can collaborate and innovate to accelerate the move to Net Zero at the same time as bringing new jobs and investment to our region."

The Solent LEP Annual Report is available here.

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