• Tuesday 19 Nov 2013

    Places, Partnerships and Colleges

    Our voice of Buckinghamshire Business this week is:
    Martin Doel, Chief Executive of the Association of Colleges (AoC).

    Since the advent of Local Enterprise Partnerships, further education colleges have been working hard to establish effective partnerships with each of the 39 LEPs. Colleges have been seeking such effective partnerships since before Michael Heseltine’s report concerning the addition of elements of skills funding to the local pot, and the reasons why are not hard to discern.

    Colleges, like LEPs, serve a place and are explicitly focused on the progression of their students directly into employment or progression through further study to a rewarding career. By this means, like LEPs they seek to promote individual prosperity and local growth. Colleges are different to schools and universities in that schools, whilst local, are more remote from the labour market; universities, whilst having significant economic impact as consumers of services are normally regional and national in their outlook and do not have the same natural focus on employability.

  • Friday 29 Nov 2013

    LEP Overlaps - what are they good for?

    Our voice of Buckinghamshire Business this week is:
    Guy Lachlan, Owner of Jones & Cocks, Non-Executive Director of Buckinghamshire Business First, Chair of the Bucks Business Group, and Vice Chair of the British Hardware Federation.

    My wife and I own and operate a small retail business which is involved in the delivery of Liquid Petroleum Gas and other gases around Aylesbury Vale. It just so happens that our served area almost exactly matches the footprint of Aylesbury Vale District Council (AVDC), which has chosen to be a constituent of two adjacent LEPs – Buckinghamshire Thames Valley (BTVLEP) and South East Midlands (SEMLEP).

    LEPs have been given the job to drive growth in their local areas; they are partnerships of local businesses with local authorities and other public sector bodies, and because they know their local economies well, the idea is that they can tailor services to meet local needs, and thereby drive growth.