A new draft Statement of Intent has been shared by Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) which sets out the future vision and ambition for the region and how they can drive economic growth through supporting businesses, whilst highlighting opportunities for future funding and investment.
Dorset LEP, who’ll be speaking about their regional plans at the Bournemouth & Dorset Development Plans Conference, say the report showcases ‘a huge opportunity’ for the region which will also have a major impact of the UK economy as a whole. Initial plans have revealed an ambitious target to double the size of the county’s economy over the next twenty years – which will add £17 billion to the UK economy whilst creating 80,000 new jobs.
The initial draft consists of several key targets including:

– To drive growth in the regions key areas, including creative digital, advanced engineering, agri-tech and aquaculture.
– Ensure increased investment into connectivity, including transport links, improved broadband and mobile connectivity and more.
– Collaborate to increase available affordable housing, which will include seeking a £215m affordable housing deal with Government which will also unlock improved and new infrastructure. The longer term vision could even see the development of a garden city and urban extensions.
– Pursue a Health Living Deal with Government to support improved health outcomes
– Formal city status for Bournemouth with a view of creating a vibrant and sustainable 21st-century city by the sea.
Jim Stewart, Chairman of the Dorset LEP, said: ”Dorset is a place with tremendous opportunity. “In this Statement of Intent, we have set out how we– public sector partners and local businesses alike – intend to build a more productive, more attractive, more connected Dorset. Crucially, we will continue to improve and develop the quality of our places. We are fortunate to be an area that mixes high quality cultural and creative attractions, superb heritage and unparalleled coastal and rural beauty. We recognise that our area faces challenges as well. We do not yet have the homes or infrastructure needed to support the kind of growth we want.”
We’re excited to hear more about the developments happening across the region at the Bournemouth & Dorset Development Plans Conference later this year!