MP demands statement on future funding after agri tec cash goes to Soham and not to Chatteris

12:53 07 May 2014

MP Steve Barclay at a Greater Cambridge Greater Peterborough Enterprise Partnership (LEP) briefing event in Westminster

MP Steve Barclay at a Greater Cambridge Greater Peterborough Enterprise Partnership (LEP) briefing event in Westminster

Archant

MP Steve Barclay has demanded an urgent statement from an enterprise partnership following the decision to give £500,000 for an agri-tech centre in Soham and not to Chatteris.

The MP for NE Cambs is particularly incensed since he was “one of the key players alongside my colleague George Freeman MP to help secure government funding for an agri-tech centre in Cambridgeshire”.

Mr Barclay has called for the Greater Cambridge Greater Peterborough Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) to explain the breakdown of funding for proposed schemes between the Cambridgeshire constituencies.

The Soham project is part of a £1.76million investment over the next three years.

Overall it will create 77 jobs and 15 apprenticeships and ¬safeguard 148 jobs.

Work is due to start on the G’s Group-owned site in July and be completed before the end of the year.

Mark Reeve, enterprise partnership chairman, said: “By investing in the hub we are providing space for projects to develop and grow, with the end focus on creating new jobs in the future.

But Mr Barclay said: “It is important for the LEP to demonstrate to my constituents that they are not forgotten. It is illogical for the wealthiest areas of the county to keep being the ones getting the most funding.

“I accept the decision on the agri-tech going to Soham, although it is disappointing for Fenland, but it is now even more important that the LEP sets out what it will deliver for our area.”

A spokesman for Fenland Council said: “We are obviously disappointed not to have succeeded in bringing this major new agri-tech centre to Fenland.

“However, we remain optimistic that our own proposal can still be taken forward.”

Fenland Council worked with Produce World of Chatteris to develop a Centre for Agriculture Training, Innovation and Education (CATIE).

Mr Reeve said the Fenland proposal had “great potential to support training for the developing agri-tec sector.

“Whilst we can only select one innovation centre, my team at the LEP are looking at other opportunities and we hope to be able to pick up on this initiative in the future.”

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Wisbech Standard visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Wisbech Standard staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Wisbech Standard account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Video stills: Police released this footage from one of the ATM raids

Five men – including one from Parson Drove and another from Upwell- have been convicted of a string of ATM ram raids and burglaries in which more than £400,000 was stolen and £250,000 of damage caused.

Shape Your Place, Fenland's online voice

Closure of the Cambridgeshire County Council community website Shape Your Place will save council tax payers £180,000 over the next 12 months.

10:00
Cllr Alan Melton covering a shift as a refuse collector in 2010, when he was leader of the council.

Former Fenland District Council leader Alan Melton heaped praise on the area’s binmen and street cleaners as he said farewell to the council chamber after 34 years.

09:00
Jonathan Blackman, Chris Lillywhite, John Chapman and Mike Hutchinson.

Three expert fruit growers at a Wisbech company have received a prestigious industry qualification.

Most read stories

Most commented stories

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Wisbech Standard e-edition today E-edition