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LANCASHIRE IMPLEMENTATION PLAN MEASURES RURAL DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME FOR ENGLAND

Introduction The measures attached to this document have been prepared in consultation with The Lancashire Rural Affairs Forum, The Lancashire Rural Development Board, and The Rural Practitioners Steering Group. The measures have been developed with reference to the priorities set out within: The Rural Development Programme for England 2007 – 2013 (RDPE) www.defra.gov.uk/erdp/rdp07_13/ The Rural Development Programme for England, The Implementation Plan for England’s Northwest 2007 – 2013 (RIP) - www.nwda.co.uk/rdpe/ The Regional Rural Delivery Framework – www.go-nw.gov.uk The Regional Economic Strategy (RES) - www.nwda.co.uk The Lancashire Economic Strategy (LES) – www.lancashire-ep.org.uk The Regional Forestry Framework Priorities Natural England Strategic Direction 06-09 priorities Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire (CARL) – www.lancashire-ep.org.uk The Rural Development Programme for England, (RDPE) will be delivered under three Axes. Delivery of Axis 2 within the sub-region is not included in these documents as this will be the responsibility of Natural England and the Forestry Commission. However, there is a significant opportunity for aligning intervention in Axis 2 with priorities outlined for Axes 1 & 3 and allocation of funding in the Lancashire Implementation Plan, (LIP) will give consideration to complementary actions in Axis 2, where appropriate, to ensure maximum impact and increased value for money. It is important to note that the RDPE is not designed to achieve all of the areas identified for intervention within the above strategies and the LIP has been targeted to achieve maximum impact with the limited resources available. Strategic Fit The delivery of the RDPE through the measures outlined within these documents is aligned with and will contribute towards the objectives of a number of regional strategies including the Regional Economic Strategy, (RES) and Regional Spatial Strategy, (RSS). They also fully align with key sub regional strategies including the Lancashire Economic Strategy (LES) and Central Lancashire City Region Development Programme (CLCRDP). These include the priorities of improving learning and attainment, upskilling of the workforce to participate in opportunities created, enhanced business support mechanisms and improving the quality of place offer.


The Lancashire Economic Partnership, (LEP) has established a set of six strategic headline priorities, three spatial and three thematic, with Rural forming one of these priorities. Developed from a sound and robust evidence base, the Lancashire Economic Strategy, Subregional Action Plan, CARL and the LIP will assist in delivery of these identified economic priorities, ensuring the economic well-being of the sub-region as a whole whilst specifically supporting local interventions which will have at least sub-regional impact. The evidence base that supports the LES identifies a number of structural weaknesses in the sub-regional economy. Specifically; the sub-region has a decreasingly productive manufacturing sector through a lack of private sector investment; the service sector economy is not making good the deficits that exist in manufacturing and there is little evidence of entrepreneurial activity. A key objective for the sub-region will be to ensure those opportunities that exist in the more growth-orientated parts of the economy are realised whilst ensuring that assets in the less growth-orientated areas are harnessed creatively, supporting a transition to higher-value activity across the sub-region. In this context, the LES recognises that the opportunity for Lancashire is based upon how it can best turn these assets into tangible economic prospects. The aim of much activity being developed through the implementation of the LES, CARL and LIP will be to pursue an approach towards encouraging knowledge-based industry and the competitive advantages which can be gained through the application of knowledge via a process of managed economic restructuring. The implementation of these strategies will also ensure that the wider–value at play in Lancashire is developed. This includes traditional manufacturing, land based and smaller tourism enterprises which play an important role in delivering sustainable economic, social, and particularly in terms of the rural area, environmental benefits. In terms of delivery of the LIP and in achieving effective delivery of the RES in the sub-region, co-ordination, implementation and delivery of the identified activity in the Sub-regional Action Plan and Regional Support Programmes will be essential. This will ensure that activity and specifically, measures 123 & 124 and 311 & 312 within the LIP will result in improved connectivity, efficiency and value for money. The vision for Lancashire set out in the LES is conceptualised through an approach that seeks to exploit the competitive advantage of existing sectors and businesses within Lancashire and address market failure. Part of this ensures that Lancashire supports the economic growth of other areas The objective is to move the Lancashire economy up the value chain. Many of the proposals within the RDPE directly support this objective.


Four key drivers have been identified to address the sub-regions economic challenges. These include 1. Higher value activity and investment The strategic aim of this objective is to grow the market and increase the share of businesses participating in higher value activity across the sub-region. The proposals identified to adopt the use of ICT and new technologies and improve business management techniques, innovation and connection with markets, support this strategic challenge. 2

Investing in People The LES recognises that improving productivity levels in the sub-region, is driven by a number of factors. Up-skilling of the existing workforce and the harnessing of knowledge and skills will help to make firms more competitive in the longer term. The proposals to develop skills within the rural areas fully support this.

3. Employment generation and entrepreneurship. This strategic objective has a focus on increasing the share of higher value activity across the sub-region, whilst recognising that in parts of the sub-region lower skilled activity helps to support communities that reside there. For these businesses, the challenge of raising value added contribution is as applicable as the need to focus on replacement skills. This is supported by the proposals to boost the competitiveness of the business base within rural areas with the focus on the creation of development of micro-enterprises involved with high growth knowledge economy sectors. 4. Investment in quality of place Many of the proposals set out support the need to improve the quality of place in the sub region. Lancashire has a distinct investment proposition. The area is truly polycentric, with a strong network of urban centres forming the economic base of a sub region that is set within an outstanding natural environment taking in coast, city and country. This geography, when coupled with the existing economic base and its potential, makes for a Sub Region that is poised to act as a powerful complementary addition to the City Regions of Liverpool and Manchester in the North West, and to the rest of the national economy more widely. The objective set out in the RDPE proposals, to protect and increase the attractiveness and therefore competitiveness of Lancashire’s rural assets, is key to realise our ambitions for an area that is distinguished by its high quality physical environment. It is only through ensuring that our rural assets are developed will we


be able to realise the wider economic benefits associated with our quality of place offer and achieve long term competitive advantage. Activity within the LIP will target RES Actions 27, 28, 30, 51, 56, 83 and 119, correspond with the headline and action plan priorities of the LES, specifically Exploiting Business in Rural Areas, together with supporting Tourism and Rural Developments. Actions will fully integrate with the CLCRDP priorities of improving learning and attainment, up-skilling of the workforce to participate in opportunities created, enhanced business support mechanisms and improving the quality of place offer. In addition, LIP activities will support the Lancashire and Blackpool Tourist Board’s Visitor Economy Strategy through the development of sustainable tourism, business cluster and network development with particular attention to the Country Escapes thematic product development priority. Business Support Activities identified in the LIP will also be developed within the emerging regional Business Support Simplification model to avoid duplication of activity. Activity will also be developed in line with the emerging NWDA Regional Support Programmes, which seek to ensure that support from the region is targeted to best meet local need. These will have a specific focus on enterprise, skills development, worklessness, science & innovation, internationalisation, ICT, Cluster Development, Rural and Tourism. We recognise the opportunities to turn our rural assets into economic drivers in their own right. The RDPE proposals set out below support this.


COMMON MEASURE TEMPLATE FOR LEADER AND NON-LEADER APPROACHES RDPE Measure Code Rationale for Intervention

111 – Vocational training and information actions

A short text justifying the needs for and the benefits of the intervention through the RDPE linking to the available evidence base. This also needs to demonstrate consistency with both the draft RDPE and the North West RIP. “Evidence from the Mid-Term evaluation of the 2000-06 England Rural Development Programme, and from a Learning, Skills and Knowledge Review carried out by Defra in 2003, indicated the importance of training, information facilitation and advice in establishing a competitive and sustainable farming sector. The Sustainable Farming and Food Strategy highlights the need to improve industry uptake of technology and entrepreneurial skills to achieve a more productive sector and improve environmental sustainability.” (Rural Development Programme for England 2007-2013, p. 5-193, para. 685.) “The evolution and specialization of agriculture and forestry require an appropriate level of technical and economic training, including expertise in new information technologies, as well as adequate awareness of product quality, results of research and sustainable management of natural resources, including cross-compliance requirements and the application of production practices compatible with the maintenance and enhancement of the landscape and the protection of the environment.” (Rural Development Programme for England 2007-2013, p. 5-193, para. 687.) “Overall in the rural economy of the North West there are considerable issues around low profit and lack of economic diversity that is compounded by remoteness and a lack of workspace. Agriculture and forestry are particularly associated with these issues. Although rural areas enjoy lower levels of unemployment, earning levels are lower and multiple employments is prevalent in remote areas.” (Rural Development Programme for England The Implementation Plan for England’s Northwest 2007 – 2013, p. 10.) Vocational training and the development of skills to improve competitiveness are cited in the Regional Implementation Plan (RIP) as one of the priority actions of Theme One; Making agriculture and forestry more competitive and sustainable. The RIP highlights “a need for farmers and land managers to broaden their skills base to include: sustainable approaches to land management …; a greater level of understanding of information and communication technologies (ICT);” and improved business management and marketing. There is also a need “to increase levels of vocational training and deliver an increase in delivery of knowledge transfer or research, from core areas such as animal welfare, renewable energy, resource efficiency and better business practice.” Training and knowledge transfer in these areas will help improve productivity and competitiveness. Training in sustainable land management practices will also contribute to Theme Two, Conserving and enhancing the environment and countryside.


The evidence base shows that employers are less likely to train staff in the rural North West than elsewhere in the UK and there is evidence pointing to lower levels of entrepreneurial skills and poorer management skills. There are also indications that productivity in the agricultural and food sectors could be further increased by improvements in the level of skills and agriculture has the highest level of unqualified managers and the lowest participation in management training of any industry sector. Any intervention must also overcome barriers of a cultural resistance to training, reflecting a primarily poor appreciation of the business benefit and the physical barriers such as distance and cost. “Only one in eight employees that live in rural Lancashire works in the business and professional services sector. Low pay is endemic across much of rural Lancashire; earnings are lower from work done within the rural districts than the level of ‘residence’ based household incomes.” (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, p. 10.) “The average gross weekly earnings in Lancashire’s rural districts [Lancaster, Ribble Valley, Wyre and West Lancashire] are equal to (two districts) or below the national average.” (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, p. 11.) “95,000 people in rural Lancashire have National Vocational Qualification Level 1 (or equivalent) as their highest qualification. One in five of those in the sub-region for whom Level 2 is their highest qualification live in rural Lancashire; directly proportionate to the rural / urban split of population, yet the vast majority of post-16 education and training is delivered in an urban context.” (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, p. 11.) “Agriculture accounts for over 15% of business stock in the rural districts [Lancaster, Ribble Valley, Wyre and West Lancashire] yet contributes less than 1% of sub-regional GVA. The reliance on land-based business for employment and livelihood increases dramatically with ‘rurality’; in areas of the Forest of Bowland Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) the sector accounts for in excess of 22% of employment (compared to 3.8% average for Ribble Valley district). There is very limited incidence of growth sector businesses in the Forest of Bowland AONB and in parts of West Lancashire. Migrant workers in the horticultural sector in West Lancashire are becoming a major influence on service provision; homelessness is becoming a factor.” (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, pp. 10-11.) “The Lancashire agricultural sector has demonstrated a high level of resilience, and the ability to ‘add value’ by engagement in the speciality food sector and tourism. Lancashire has a thriving ‘dairy products’ sector (cheese and yoghurts) and high quality field-scale horticulture in the West.” (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, p. 13.)

Objectives of the Intervention

Existing training is neither sufficiently sympathetic to the remoteness of rural residents and businesses nor tailored to the farming, food and forestry sectors. A concise statement giving details of what the intervention is intended to achieve. Objectives should follow the SMART criteria and also should demonstrate consistency with both the draft RDPE and the North West RIP. To raise the overall level of skills in the farming, food and forestry sectors to improve business competitiveness and sustainability and to ensure high environmental and quality standards.


To provide a range of accessible training and knowledge transfer opportunities to meet the needs of the sector to increase participation in training and raise awareness of new technologies and business practices. Equip those working in the farming, food and forestry sectors to: •

Allocation (%)

Equal Opportunities

Develop business management and marketing skills to improve business performance and connection with markets • Adopt the use of ICT and new technologies to improve business management techniques • Be better informed of new developments and business practices within the sector; including animal health and welfare and renewable energies • Enable them to adopt land management practices that protect resources, enhance the countryside and environment, reduce waste and use resources efficiently • Develop skills to support primary processing in the agriculture and forestry sectors • Have relevant technical skills to ensure high environmental and quality standards and business performance Percentage allocation of funding to delivered through this measure. To be cumulated on an axis basis therefore total percentage allocation to axis 1, for example, should total 100% across the measures. 15% Give details of the approach to be taken for the whole measure in terms of equality of opportunity. The diversity of the people and communities of Lancashire will be recognised in the delivery of the Rural Development Programme for England, all partners involved in delivery of the programme will be required to give consideration to: • • • • • •

Sustaining progress on the implementation of equal opportunities Tackling areas of potential discrimination and social exclusion to ensure that the programme is delivered equitably and appropriately Ensuring that the beneficiaries of the programme do not receive less favourable treatment because of age, ethnic origin, disability, gender, religion and sexual orientation nor by reason of any other condition or requirement that cannot be shown to be justifiable Carrying out of audits and maintaining monitoring arrangements designed to identify areas of equality development and to support relevant action plans Consultation with service users, community groups and partner organisations about the development and implementation of its equality objectives Securing the support of partners and contractors for equality objectives


Sustainable Development

Give details of the approach to be taken for the whole measure in terms of sustainable development. The Rural Development Programme for England will be delivered to all people in the County in ways which will enhance the quality of life for people today whilst protecting the local and global environment for the future. This will be achieved by working towards the following objectives: • • • • • • • • • • • •

Minimise growth in carbon emissions Make more efficient use of natural resources and produce less waste Produce lower levels of pollution and improve the quality of our air, sea and river water Create a more ecologically diverse natural environment Communicate the contribution businesses, people and communities can make Promote social inclusion by ensuring that basic needs for all rural Lancashire’s citizens are met more locally and through sustainable transport solutions Promote more opportunities for work for all sections of the community in a diverse economy Create social, environmental and economic conditions which lead to improvements in the health of rural Lancashire’s citizens Provide equal access to facilities, goods, services and people whilst respecting environmental limits Ensure that lifelong learning opportunities are available to all by providing equal access to education, training and information Empower all sections of the community to participate in the decision making process to create neighbourhoods and communities in all parts of rural Lancashire, which are valued by the people who live in them Encourage enterprise and innovation to create sustainable solutions

ACTIVITY ONE Description of Proposed Activity

A short description of the scope of the proposed activity. If you have more than one activity which you intend to deliver through this measure please enter details of your second activity below. To provide accessible, flexible learning opportunities that meet the needs of the sectors. This will take the form of a range of delivery methods including seminars, workshops and business clubs and at venues in rural areas. Topics to include: • •

Business management Marketing


• • • • •

Type of Support Beneficiaries

Total Cost Intervention Rate (%) Coverage

Indicators and Targets

Application of ICT in business Good Farming Practice Workshops to promote sustainable land management practices; i.e. soil, nutrient, manure and conservation management Waste management and resource efficiency Animal Health and Welfare Technical skills updating and training for specific enterprises

On-farm events and workshops for knowledge transfer to disseminate best business practice, innovative techniques and products and outcomes of research e.g. bio-energy, resource efficiency etc. Give details of what form the support will take, e.g. grants to individuals, including any specific exclusions. Training delivered in small groups at venues and times accessible to those working in rural areas of Lancashire. This type of training is more costly to deliver and needs funding support. Give details of the beneficiaries the activity will support, e.g. individuals, micro-enterprises, SMEs or training providers. Individuals, self-employed and micro-enterprises in the farming, food and forestry sectors and training providers. Give details of the total cost of the activity including other sources of funding. £850,000 Give details of the proposed intervention rate to support this activity. A maximum of 50%. Provide details on the coverage of support, e.g. spatial or thematic targeting. Across the sub-region with an emphasis on underperforming and lagging districts and outlying Severely Disadvantaged and Disadvantaged Areas. Provide details of the indicators and targets from the draft RDPE which the activity will deliver. 1,500 participants in training 4,500 training days received 85% of participants successfully complete the training or information activity; of which: 80% of participants have applied or expect to apply the acquired skills in practice Businesses supported under the RDPE show a rate of growth in profitability, net of other factors, that is greater than the average for other similar businesses in England Reduce the gap in productivity between the least well performing quartile of rural areas and the English median


Delivery Area

Create new jobs Raise the firm formation rate Reduce the number of working age people with no qualifications Increase the number of people in the workforce with graduate qualifications Increase the number of people in the workforce Reduce CO2 emissions per unit (£) of GVA Indicate whether this activity could be delivered either regionally or sub-regionally.

Demarcation

This activity could be delivered sub-regionally or regionally through a network of training providers e.g. a Regional Rural Training Partnership. Give details of whether this activity could be delivered via any other funding stream such as ESF or ERDF. This type of training could not be delivered through ESF as it does not fit with the targets of the Draft ESF LSC Cofinancing Plan for the North West. Provision under the RDPE will integrate with, and be additional to, other training and business support.

RDPE Measure Code Rationale for Intervention

123 – Adding value to agricultural and forestry products

A short text justifying the needs for and the benefits of the intervention through the RDPE linking to the available evidence base. This also needs to demonstrate consistency with both the draft RDPE and the North West RIP. “As one of the five drivers of productivity, innovation is considered crucial to economic growth and long term prosperity (DTI, 2006). However, the market sometimes fails to provide the assets required for innovation due to issues of scale and uncertainty. Many agricultural firms may have problems innovating because of their size. The agricultural and forestry sectors are largely populated by small firms isolated from the services and information sources available to other sectors. The market is not large enough to encourage the development of new technologies or consulting services to assist in improvements. Any existing consulting services are expensive, particularly for the small firms that constitute the agricultural and forestry sectors, and as a result the sectors are unable, without intervention, to invest in the research necessary to achieve innovation. Similar market failures exist in the forestry sector, meaning that in the absence of support the sector is unable to take advantage of the opportunities that exist for substituting wood for less environmentally sustainable raw materials, particularly for energy production. Woodfuel represents a major new market opportunity, for low grade hard and softwood. But it requires innovation in terms of harvesting equipment and techniques, processing, marketing, supply chains, and end user facilities.” (Rural Development Programme for England 2007-2013, p. 5-212, para. 764.) “[The] circumstances [for agriculture] will continue to shift. Most pivotally through the change in focus under the


Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) from supporting agricultural output to supporting sustainable land management, environmental stewardship and the development of farm businesses focussed on their customers. A sustainable and prosperous farming sector will be in a better position to deliver many of the desired environmental and animal health and welfare outcomes than one which is struggling to survive. To deliver this, farmers will need to adopt a new culture of co-operation and collaboration that will be capable of delivering economies of scale. The challenge for the region, particularly in upland areas, is to maintain an economically viable farming and food sector which is focused on its markets and seeks to maximise the environmental gain from this shift. At the same time it is important to recognise the role of the agricultural community in safeguarding the region’s upland heritage where diversity and options for change are limited. Opportunities also exist to develop locality food brands, offering farmers the chance to add value to commodity production. Potential may also exist to link economic and environmental assets through food branding, especially in areas of high landscape character. Organic farming within the region is recognised as having an important role in delivering a Sustainable Farming and Food sector. The region has responded to the challenges facing the organic sector and has established the North West Organics Centre to reverse the reduction in land managed organically and bring the region more in line with national trends and market opportunities. Pressing issues such as declining returns to producers, a lack of producer co-operation, a lack of processing facilities and problems over quality and continuity of supply remain important for the region to address.” (Rural Development Programme for England The Implementation Plan for England’s Northwest 2007 – 2013, p. 8.)

Objectives of the Intervention

“Agriculture accounts for over 15% of business stock in the rural districts [Lancaster, Ribble Valley, Wyre and West Lancashire] yet contributes less than 1% of sub-regional GVA. The reliance on land-based business for employment and livelihood increases dramatically with ‘rurality’; in areas of the Forest of Bowland AONB the sector accounts for in excess of 22% of employment (compared to 3.8% average for Ribble Valley district). There is very limited incidence of growth sector businesses in the Forest of Bowland AONB and in parts of West Lancashire. (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, pp. 10-11.) “The Lancashire agricultural sector has demonstrated a high level of resilience, and the ability to ‘add value’ by engagement in the speciality food sector and tourism. Lancashire has a thriving ‘dairy products’ sector (cheese and yoghurts) and high quality field-scale horticulture in the West.” (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, p. 13.) A concise statement giving details of what the intervention is intended to achieve. Objectives should follow the SMART criteria and also should demonstrate consistency with both the draft RDPE and the North West RIP. “The objective … is to improve the processing and marketing of primary agricultural and forestry products through investment in improved efficiency, renewable energy, new technologies and new market opportunities, … to improve


Allocation (%)

Equal Opportunities

the overall performance of the enterprise” (Rural Development Programme for England 2007-2013, p. 5-212, para. 765) and develop new competitive enterprises. Percentage allocation of funding to delivered through this measure. To be cumulated on an axis basis therefore total percentage allocation to axis 1, for example, should total 100% across the measures. 70% Give details of the approach to be taken for the whole measure in terms of equality of opportunity. The diversity of the people and communities of Lancashire will be recognised in the delivery of the Rural Development Programme for England, all partners involved in delivery of the programme will be required to give consideration to: • •

Sustainable Development

Sustaining progress on the implementation of equal opportunities Tackling areas of potential discrimination and social exclusion to ensure that the programme is delivered equitably and appropriately • Ensuring that the beneficiaries of the programme do not receive less favourable treatment because of age, ethnic origin, disability, gender, religion and sexual orientation nor by reason of any other condition or requirement that cannot be shown to be justifiable • Carrying out of audits and maintaining monitoring arrangements designed to identify areas of equality development and to support relevant action plans • Consultation with service users, community groups and partner organisations about the development and implementation of its equality objectives • Securing the support of partners and contractors for its equality objectives Give details of the approach to be taken for the whole measure in terms of sustainable development. The Rural Development Programme for England will be delivered to all people in the County in ways which will enhance the quality of life for people today whilst protecting the local and global environment for the future. This will be achieved by working towards the following objectives: • • • • • •

Minimise growth in carbon emissions Make more efficient use of natural resources and produce less waste Produce lower levels of pollution and improve the quality of our air, sea and river water Create a more ecologically diverse natural environment Communicate the contribution businesses, people and communities can make Promote social inclusion by ensuring that basic needs for all rural Lancashire’s citizens are met more


• • • • • •

locally and through sustainable transport solutions Promote more opportunities for work for all sections of the community in a diverse economy Create social, environmental and economic conditions which lead to improvements in the health of rural Lancashire’s citizens Provide equal access to facilities, goods, services and people whilst respecting environmental limits Ensure that lifelong learning opportunities are available to all by providing equal access to education, training and information Empower all sections of the community to participate in the decision making process to create neighbourhoods and communities in all parts of rural Lancashire, which are valued by the people who live in them Encourage enterprise and innovation to create sustainable solutions

ACTIVITY ONE Description of Proposed Activity

A short description of the scope of the proposed activity. If you have more than one activity which you intend to deliver through this measure please enter details of your second activity below. Support will be provided for; • • • •

Type of Support

Beneficiaries

Processing/adding value to products New product development New process development New technology development

All beneficiaries will be encouraged to show consideration of carbon mitigation measures as a part of project proposals. Give details of what form the support will take, e.g. grants to individuals, including any specific exclusions. Businesses will be supported through grant aid providing; • Capital funding for development • Revenue support for specialist advice • Revenue support for marketing Give details of the beneficiaries the activity will support, e.g. individuals, micro-enterprises, SMEs or training providers.


Total Cost Intervention Rate (%) Coverage

Indicators and Targets

Micro-enterprises, small and medium sized enterprises and support providers. Give details of the total cost of the activity including other sources of funding. ÂŁ4,050,000 Give details of the proposed intervention rate to support this activity. A maximum of 40%. Provide details on the coverage of support, e.g. spatial or thematic targeting. Across the sub-region with an emphasis on underperforming and lagging districts and outlying Severely Disadvantaged and Disadvantaged Areas. Provide details of the indicators and targets from the draft RDPE which the activity will deliver.

Delivery Area

2000 enterprises supported 95% of holdings or enterprises receiving support under the relevant measures introduce a new product and/or technique Farm/food/forestry enterprises supported under the RDPE show an increase in GVA (as measured by growth in profitability) which is equal to or greater than in other farm/food/forestry enterprises in England Reduce the gap in productivity between the least well performing quartile of rural areas and the English median Deliver more customer focussed, competitive and sustainable farming and food industries Create new jobs Raise the firm formation rate Increase the number of people in the workforce Reduce CO2 emissions per unit (ÂŁ) of GVA Indicate whether this activity could be delivered either regionally or sub-regionally.

Demarcation

This activity could be delivered sub-regionally or regionally. Give details of whether this activity could be delivered via any other funding stream such as ESF or ERDF. This activity could not be delivered by any other funding stream because of demarcation between structural funds and the prioritisation of national grant. Provision under the RDPE will integrate with, and be additional to, other business support.

RDPE Measure Code

124 – Co-operation for the development of new products


Rationale for Intervention

A short text justifying the needs for and the benefits of the intervention through the RDPE linking to the available evidence base. This also needs to demonstrate consistency with both the draft RDPE and the North West RIP. “As one of the five drivers of productivity, innovation is considered crucial to economic growth and long term prosperity (DTI, 2006). However, the market sometimes fails to provide the assets required for innovation due to issues of scale and uncertainty. Many agricultural firms may have problems innovating because of their size. The agricultural and forestry sectors are largely populated by small firms isolated from the services and information sources available to other sectors. The market is not large enough to encourage the development of new technologies or consulting services to assist in improvements. Any existing consulting services are expensive, particularly for the small firms that constitute the agricultural and forestry sectors, and as a result the sectors are unable, without intervention, to invest in the research necessary to achieve innovation. Similar market failures exist in the forestry sector, meaning that in the absence of support the sector is unable to take advantage of the opportunities that exist for substituting wood for less environmentally sustainable raw materials, particularly for energy production. Woodfuel represents a major new market opportunity, for low grade hard and softwood. But it requires innovation in terms of harvesting equipment and techniques, processing, marketing, supply chains, and end user facilities.” (Rural Development Programme for England 2007-2013, p. 5-212, para. 764.) “The Government’s Strategy for Sustainable Farming and Food (SFFS) recognised the importance of reconnecting all elements of the food chain, and in particular farmers with their markets. Strengthening links between the various elements of the chain through cooperation and collaboration is seen to be a key element in achieving this objective. The SFFS emphasised the importance of reducing unnecessary costs, improving efficiency along the food chain, and adding value to production.” (Rural Development Programme for England 2007-2013, p. 5-216, para. 784.) “In the non-food sector, the joint Defra/DTI Strategy for non-food crops and uses, launched in 2004, confirmed the Government’s commitment to the development of renewable materials …to provide energy, fuels and industrial products. The Government recognised the potential of these sectors and the key part they play in helping to meet sustainable development targets, as well as bringing benefits to industry competitiveness, the rural economy, and the environment… The development of new products, processesand technologies has an important role to play in achieving the aims of both these strategies. By collaborating to pool resources and knowledge, businesseswill be better able to pursue the development and uptake of more efficient ways of working and to exploit, for example, the growing demand for quality foods and renewable raw materials such as wood fuel. However, the investment and knowledge basenecessary to do this is beyond the reach of many of the, often small, businessesthat make up the agriculture, food and forestry sectors. As a result, the sector is less able, without intervention, to invest in the research necessary to innovate successfully… Intervention is therefore required to correct two basic market failures: first, the problem in providing the assets required for innovation; and second, the information asymmetry which causesinnovation to be constrained by uncertainty about the payoffs from risky investments. It is also required to overcome the barriers which prevent businessesfrom collaborating. One of these barriers is the


transaction cost, particularly in terms of time, that one businessfaces if it wishes to collaborate with another. Use of this measure will reduce those transaction costs by providing funds for the infrastructure that supports collaboration. (Rural Development Programme for England 2007-2013, p. 5-216, para. 785 - 787.) “[The] circumstances [for agriculture] will continue to shift. Most pivotally through the change in focus under the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) from supporting agricultural output to supporting sustainable land management, environmental stewardship and the development of farm businesses focussed on their customers. A sustainable and prosperous farming sector will be in a better position to deliver many of the desired environmental and animal health and welfare outcomes than one which is struggling to survive. To deliver this, farmers will need to adopt a new culture of co-operation and collaboration that will be capable of delivering economies of scale. The challenge for the region, particularly in upland areas, is to maintain an economically viable farming and food sector which is focused on its markets and seeks to maximise the environmental gain from this shift. At the same time it is important to recognise the role of the agricultural community in safeguarding the region’s upland heritage where diversity and options for change are limited. Opportunities also exist to develop locality food brands, offering farmers the chance to add value to commodity production. Potential may also exist to link economic and environmental assets through food branding, especially in areas of high landscape character. (Rural Development Programme for England The Implementation Plan for England’s Northwest 2007 – 2013, p. 8.) The development of new and innovative collaborative activity and ventures offers one obvious route to increase the competitiveness of enterprises in the sub-region through combating the falling returns, lack of processing capacity and continuity of supply problems identified in the Northwest Regional Implementation Plan. “Agriculture accounts for over 15% of business stock in the rural districts [Lancaster, Ribble Valley, Wyre and West Lancashire] yet contributes less than 1% of sub-regional GVA. The reliance on land-based business for employment and livelihood increases dramatically with ‘rurality’; in areas of the Forest of Bowland AONB the sector accounts for in excess of 22% of employment (compared to 3.8% average for Ribble Valley district). There is very limited incidence of growth sector businesses in the Forest of Bowland AONB and in parts of West Lancashire. (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, pp. 10-11.) “The Lancashire agricultural sector has demonstrated a high level of resilience, and the ability to ‘add value’ by engagement in the speciality food sector and tourism. Lancashire has a thriving ‘dairy products’ sector (cheese and yoghurts) and high quality field-scale horticulture in the West.” (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, p. 13.) “Measure 123 is restricted to micro-enterprises, but developing new products and processescan require capital investment beyond the means of such businesses.It is therefore necessary to implement this measure to enable more major and large scale innovations to be pursued, as cooperative ventures. Linkage between growers and producers can also be very critical in


Objectives of the Intervention

Allocation (%)

Equal Opportunities

terms of security of supply and market for an innovative product, and this measure specifically facilitates this.” (Rural Development Programme for England 2007-2013, p. 5-217, para. 790.) A concise statement giving details of what the intervention is intended to achieve. Objectives should follow the SMART criteria and also should demonstrate consistency with both the draft RDPE and the North West RIP. The objective of this measure is to ensure that the farming, food and forestry sectors can take advantage of market opportunities through widespread innovative approaches in developing new products, processesand technologies. For this purpose, co-operation between farmers, the food and the raw materials processing industry and other parties will be encouraged. Percentage allocation of funding to delivered through this measure. To be cumulated on an axis basis therefore total percentage allocation to axis 1, for example, should total 100% across the measures. 15% Give details of the approach to be taken for the whole measure in terms of equality of opportunity. The diversity of the people and communities of Lancashire will be recognised in the delivery of the Rural Development Programme for England, all partners involved in delivery of the programme will be required to give consideration to: Sustaining progress on the implementation of equal opportunities Tackling areas of potential discrimination and social exclusion to ensure that the programme is delivered equitably and appropriately • Ensuring that the beneficiaries of the programme do not receive less favourable treatment because of age, ethnic origin, disability, gender, religion and sexual orientation nor by reason of any other condition or requirement that cannot be shown to be justifiable • Carrying out of audits and maintaining monitoring arrangements designed to identify areas of equality development and to support relevant action plans • Consultation with service users, community groups and partner organisations about the development and implementation of its equality objectives • Securing the support of partners and contractors for its equality objectives Give details of the approach to be taken for the whole measure in terms of sustainable development. • •

Sustainable Development

The Rural Development Programme for England will be delivered to all people in the County in ways which will enhance the quality of life for people today whilst protecting the local and global environment for the future. This will be achieved by working towards the following objectives:


• • • • • • • • • • •

Minimise growth in carbon emissions Make more efficient use of natural resources and produce less waste Produce lower levels of pollution and improve the quality of our air, sea and river water Create a more ecologically diverse natural environment Communicate the contribution businesses, people and communities can make Promote social inclusion by ensuring that basic needs for all rural Lancashire’s citizens are met more locally and through sustainable transport solutions Promote more opportunities for work for all sections of the community in a diverse economy Create social, environmental and economic conditions which lead to improvements in the health of rural Lancashire’s citizens Provide equal access to facilities, goods, services and people whilst respecting environmental limits Ensure that lifelong learning opportunities are available to all by providing equal access to education, training and information Empower all sections of the community to participate in the decision making process to create neighbourhoods and communities in all parts of rural Lancashire, which are valued by the people who live in them Encourage enterprise and innovation to create sustainable solutions

ACTIVITY ONE Description of Proposed Activity

A short description of the scope of the proposed activity. If you have more than one activity which you intend to deliver through this measure please enter details of your second activity below. Collaboration between two or more producers, processors or other enterprises for: • • • • •

Type of Support

processing/adding value to products new product development new process development new technology development transaction costs associated with collaboration

All beneficiaries will be encouraged to show consideration of carbon mitigation measures as a part of project proposals. Give details of what form the support will take, e.g. grants to individuals, including any specific exclusions. Support will be provided to meet costs associated with preparatory operations such as design, product, process or technology development and tests and other tangible and/or intangible investments related to co-operation (such as


legal fees/accountancy costs), before the use of the newly developed products, processes and technologies for commercial purposes.

Beneficiaries

Costs eligible for support will be: • capital funding for development • revenue support for specialist advice • revenue support for marketing Give details of the beneficiaries the activity will support, e.g. individuals, micro-enterprises, SMEs or training providers. •

Total Cost Intervention Rate (%)

Coverage

Indicators and Targets

Primary producers in the agriculture and forestry sectors, the processing industry and/or third parties (no limitation in size); • Partners involved in co-operation projects (may include farmers, food manufacturers and processors, food retailers and distributors, forestry enterprises, raw materials processors, manufacturers and distributors of inputs, trade associations, levy boards and research establishments) and support providers. Give details of the total cost of the activity including other sources of funding. £870,000 Give details of the proposed intervention rate to support this activity. A maximum of 50%. A maximum of 15% in the case of small enterprises processing and marketing primary agricultural products. A maximum of 7.5% in the case of medium-sized enterprises processing and marketing primary agricultural products. Aid to non-SMEswill require separate notification. Provide details on the coverage of support, e.g. spatial or thematic targeting. Across the sub-region with an emphasis on underperforming and lagging districts and outlying Severely Disadvantaged and Disadvantaged Areas. Provide details of the indicators and targets from the draft RDPE which the activity will deliver. 40 co-operation initiatives supported 95%of holdings or enterprises receiving support under the relevant measures introduce a new product and/or technique Farm/food/forestry enterprises supported under the RDPEshow an increasein GVA (as measured by growth in profitability) which is equal to or greater than in other farm/food/ forestry enterprises in England. Reduce the gap in productivity between the least well performing quartile of rural areas and the English median


Delivery Area

Deliver more customer focussed, competitive and sustainable farming and food industries Create new jobs Raise the firm formation rate Increase the number of people in the workforce Reduce CO2 emissions per unit (£) of GVA Indicate whether this activity could be delivered either regionally or sub-regionally.

Demarcation

This activity could be delivered sub-regionally or regionally. Give details of whether this activity could be delivered via any other funding stream such as ESF or ERDF. This activity could not be delivered by any other funding stream because of demarcation between structural funds and the prioritisation of national grant. Provision under the RDPE will integrate with, and be additional to, other business support.

RDPE Measure Code Rationale for Intervention

311 – Diversification into non-agricultural activities

A short text justifying the needs for and the benefits of the intervention through the RDPE linking to the available evidence base. This also needs to demonstrate consistency with both the draft RDPE and the North West RIP. “Benefits of farm diversification to farms are clear, with diversified enterprises providing a quarter or more of total farm incomes in over half of businesses with diversified enterprises. Grant funding for farms can also help to lever in other forms of investment, contributing to the viability of farms through building capacity and increasing the scale of operation. Farm diversification can also have wider benefits beyond the farm gate, especially where there are linkages between farms and the local economy, including increased employment opportunities …” (Rural Development Programme for England 2007-2013, p. 5-297, para. 1187.) “Baseline data collected for the [Regional Rural Delivery Framework] RRDF makes it clear that, although rural areas account for 40% of the region’s businesses and 25% of its workforce, its contribution to GVA is only around 23% of the regional total. This suggests an abundance of poorly performing enterprises in rural areas. This must be addressed if we are to create the conditions for sustainable growth. Outside of agriculture and forestry, economic activity and commerce type in rural areas is similar to the rest of the region. Rural areas do however, have a higher proportion of SMEs, tend to have more lower paid workers with a higher proportion of seasonal employment, and significantly more multiple employment. There is a need for on-going investment, increased innovation, growth of a higher level skills base and an enduring level of entrepreneurship. A


key difference in the rural economy is that its business base appears more robust. Business start-up rates may be lower in rural areas but survival rates are higher. Prosperity in rural areas can appear ‘polarised’. Agriculture’s weak economic performance is in stark contrast to the growth in business services and the stabilising force of public sector employment which provides 20-25% of all jobs in rural areas. This also impacts at the level of individuals within rural communities where the relative prosperity of an area masks deprivation and counters the argument that all parts of a community automatically benefit from the success of investment elsewhere.” (Rural Development Programme for England The Implementation Plan for England’s Northwest 2007 – 2013, p. 7.) “Agriculture accounts for over 15% of business stock in the ‘rural’ districts [Lancaster, Ribble Valley, Wyre and West Lancashire] yet contributes less than 1% of sub-regional GVA. The reliance on land-based business for employment and livelihood increases dramatically with ‘rurality’; in areas of the Forest of Bowland AONB the sector accounts for in excess of 22% of employment (compared to 3.8% average for Ribble Valley district). There is very limited incidence of growth sector businesses in the Forest of Bowland AONB and in parts of West Lancashire.” (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, pp. 10-11.) “Only one in eight employees that live in rural Lancashire works in the business and professional services sector. Low pay is endemic across much of rural Lancashire; earnings are far lower from work done within the rural districts than the level of ‘residence’ based household incomes. Nearly 80% of businesses in rural Lancashire employ fewer than 4 people.” (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, p. 10.) “The average gross weekly earnings in Lancashire’s rural districts [Lancaster, Ribble Valley, Wyre and West Lancashire] are equal to (two districts) or below the national average.” (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, p. 11.) “Rural Lancashire hosts more businesses (pro-rata to population) than urban areas; in the region of 40% of business stock compared to 19% of population. Growth in business stock is highest in rural areas; the three districts with the highest growth in business stock 2002 – 2004 were Lancaster, Ribble Valley and Burnley (in that order). Rural Lancashire is home to more people employed in the higher value ‘growth sectors’ (financial, business and professional services) than urban Lancashire. Educational achievement and skill levels are higher within people living in rural as opposed to urban areas. Lancashire’s rural towns form a core part of each of the five ‘economic zones’; there is a substantial daily ‘labour exchange’ between urban and rural areas. The Central Lancashire City Region incorporates much of the rural area of the sub-region and recognises its contribution and potential. There is a consistent incidence of ‘growth sector’ businesses within the rural towns and across much of rural Lancashire. The fastest growing sectors (2002 – 2004 VAT registered business stock) in rural Lancashire have been Real Estate and Business, Construction and Hotels & Restaurants whilst the main decline has been in manufacturing, wholesale and retail and agriculture.” (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, pp. 12-13.)


A concise statement giving details of what the intervention is intended to achieve. Objectives should follow the Objectives of the Intervention SMART criteria and also should demonstrate consistency with both the draft RDPE and the North West RIP.

Allocation (%)

Equal Opportunities

The objective is to support the restructuring of farm businesses through the development of diversified activities that provide alternative income sources creating and developing new competitive businesses and new income streams. Percentage allocation of funding to delivered through this measure. To be cumulated on an axis basis therefore total percentage allocation to axis 1, for example, should total 100% across the measures. 35% Give details of the approach to be taken for the whole measure in terms of equality of opportunity. The diversity of the people and communities of Lancashire will be recognised in the delivery of the Rural Development Programme for England, all partners involved in delivery of the programme will be required to give consideration to: • •

Sustainable Development

Sustaining progress on the implementation of equal opportunities Tackling areas of potential discrimination and social exclusion to ensure that the programme is delivered equitably and appropriately • Ensuring that the beneficiaries of the programme do not receive less favourable treatment because of age, ethnic origin, disability, gender, religion and sexual orientation nor by reason of any other condition or requirement that cannot be shown to be justifiable • Carrying out of audits and maintaining monitoring arrangements designed to identify areas of equality development and to support relevant action plans • Consultiation with service users, community groups and partner organisations about the development and implementation of its equality objectives • Securing the support of partners and contractors for its equality objectives Give details of the approach to be taken for the whole measure in terms of sustainable development. The Rural Development Programme for England will be delivered to all people in the County in ways which will enhance the quality of life for people today whilst protecting the local and global environment for the future. This will be achieved by working towards the following objectives: • • •

Minimise growth in carbon emissions Make more efficient use of natural resources and produce less waste Produce lower levels of pollution and improve the quality of our air, sea and river water


• • • • • • • • •

Create a more ecologically diverse natural environment Communicate the contribution businesses, people and communities can make Promote social inclusion by ensuring that basic needs for all rural Lancashire’s citizens are met more locally and through sustainable transport solutions Promote more opportunities for work for all sections of the community in a diverse economy Create social, environmental and economic conditions which lead to improvements in the health of rural Lancashire’s citizens Provide equal access to facilities, goods, services and people whilst respecting environmental limits Ensure that lifelong learning opportunities are available to all by providing equal access to education, training and information Empower all sections of the community to participate in the decision making process to create neighbourhoods and communities in all parts of rural Lancashire, which are valued by the people who live in them Encourage enterprise and innovation to create sustainable solutions

ACTIVITY ONE Description of Proposed Activity

Type of Support

A short description of the scope of the proposed activity. If you have more than one activity which you intend to deliver through this measure please enter details of your second activity below. Support for all types of farm diversification excluding Annex 1 activities. All beneficiaries will be encouraged to show consideration of carbon mitigation measures as a part of project proposals. Give details of what form the support will take, e.g. grants to individuals, including any specific exclusions. Grant aid will be made available to provide; • • • • • •

Beneficiaries

Capital funding for development Revenue support for market research and feasibility studies Revenue support for marketing, product development, branding and design costs Revenue support for technical skills acquisition, coaching and mentoring Revenue support for bespoke training intrinsic to individual project applications Revenue support for technical support to help new businesses become established and to help existing businesses to consolidate and expand Give details of the beneficiaries the activity will support, e.g. individuals, micro-enterprises, Sees or training providers.


Total Cost Intervention Rate (%) Coverage

Indicators and Targets

Members of farm households engaged in agriculture. Give details of the total cost of the activity including other sources of funding. ÂŁ1,320,000 Give details of the proposed intervention rate to support this activity. A maximum of 50% depending on the limits imposed by the de minimis rules. Provide details on the coverage of support, e.g. spatial or thematic targeting. Across the sub-region with an emphasis on underperforming and lagging districts and outlying Severely Disadvantaged and Disadvantaged Areas. Provide details of the indicators and targets from the draft RDPE which the activity will deliver.

Delivery Area

400 beneficiaries Businesses supported under the RDPE show an increase in GVA (as measured by growth in profitability) which is equal to or greater than in other similar businesses in England Actual jobs created or sustained by supported businesses are at least 85% of the number of jobs predicted at the time of application. Reduce the gap in productivity between the least well performing quartile of rural areas and the English median Deliver more customer focussed, competitive and sustainable farming and food industries Raise the firm formation rate Increase the number of people in the workforce Reduce CO2 emissions per unit (ÂŁ) of GVA Indicate whether this activity could be delivered either regionally or sub-regionally.

Demarcation

This activity would best be delivered sub-regionally. Give details of whether this activity could be delivered via any other funding stream such as ESF or ERDF. This activity could not be delivered by any other funding stream because of demarcation between structural funds and the prioritisation of national grant. Provision under the RDPE will integrate with, and be additional to, other business support.

RDPE Measure Code

312 – Support creation & development of micro-


enterprises Rationale for Intervention

A short text justifying the needs for and the benefits of the intervention through the RDPE linking to the available evidence base. This also needs to demonstrate consistency with both the draft RDPE and the North West RIP. “In England micro-enterprises account for approximately 91% of the total number of firms in rural areas and form a vital component of the rural economy providing jobs and underpinning social cohesion. With appropriate help, many micro-businesses could be established or expanded to stimulate economic growth, innovation, competitiveness and to create employment opportunities, thus contributing to the [European Union’s] EU’s Lisbon agenda. Microenterprises can also be social enterprises. Social enterprises are an effective way of delivering and maintaining services, maintaining employment and providing local solutions to local problems. There is an opportunity to provide support for the development of sustainable rural social enterprises to help improve access to services and opportunities in rural areas.” (Rural Development Programme for England 2007-2013, p. 5-300, para. 1194 and 1195.) “Rural areas have a higher concentration of lower turnover businesses and a higher concentration of very small businesses, presenting challenges for business support and investment. Economic growth through indigenous new enterprises in Cumbria is higher than average in England and self employment is higher in rural areas; this should be exploited. Micro businesses form a significant part of the rural economy.” (Rural Development Programme for England The Implementation Plan for England’s Northwest 2007 – 2013, p. 12.) Coordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire (CARL) identifies “[an] over dependence on a ‘low wage economy’, predominantly the manufacturing, wholesale and retail, tourism, and farming sectors leading to a significant imbalance in residence and work based earnings and [t]he continuing instability in traditional land-based sectors, and its potential impact on sustainable land management” as being amongst the principle challenges faced by rural areas within the Lancashire sub-region. (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, p. 4.) “Agriculture accounts for over 15% of business stock in the rural districts [Lancaster, Ribble Valley, Wyre and West Lancashire] yet contributes less than 1% of sub-regional GVA. The reliance on land-based business for employment and livelihood increases dramatically with ‘rurality’; in areas of the Forest of Bowland Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) the sector accounts for in excess of 22% of employment (compared to 3.8% average for Ribble Valley district). There is, very limited incidence of growth sector businesses in the Forest of Bowland AONB and in parts of West Lancashire.” (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, pp. 10-11.) CARL also identifies several factors which could be exploited through the creation of new competitive enterprises to overcome these issues. “Rural Lancashire hosts more businesses (pro-rata to population) than urban areas; in the region of 40% of business stock compared to 19% of population. Growth in business stock is highest in rural areas;


Objectives of the Intervention

Allocation (%)

Equal Opportunities

the three districts with the highest growth in business stock 2002 – 2004 were Lancaster, Ribble Valley and Burnley (in that order). Rural Lancashire is home to more people employed in the higher value ‘growth sectors’ (financial, business and professional services) than urban Lancashire. Educational achievement and skill levels are higher within people living in rural as opposed to urban areas. There is a consistent incidence of ‘growth sector’ businesses within the rural towns and across much of rural Lancashire. The fastest growing sectors (2002 – 2004 VAT registered business stock) in rural Lancashire have been Real Estate and Business, Construction and Hotels & Restaurants whilst the main decline has been in manufacturing, wholesale and retail and agriculture.” (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, p. 12 and 13.) A concise statement giving details of what the intervention is intended to achieve. Objectives should follow the SMART criteria and also should demonstrate consistency with both the draft RDPE and the North West RIP. The objective is to provide support “for the creation and development of micro-enterprises with a view to promoting entrepreneurship and creating employment opportunities. Given the high proportion of micro-enterprises among rural businesses, a key objective of the measure will be support for achieving the growth aspirations of small rural businesses.” (Rural Development Programme for England 2007-2013, p. 5-300, para. 1196.) In order to boost the competitiveness of the business base within rural areas of the sub-region particular emphasis will be placed on the creation and development of micro-enterprises involved, or seeking to become involved, in high growth/knowledge economy sectors. Percentage allocation of funding to delivered through this measure. To be cumulated on an axis basis therefore total percentage allocation to axis 1, for example, should total 100% across the measures. 40% Give details of the approach to be taken for the whole measure in terms of equality of opportunity. The diversity of the people and communities of Lancashire will be recognised in the delivery of the Rural Development Programme for England, all partners involved in delivery of the programme will be required to give consideration to: • • • •

Sustaining progress on the implementation of equal opportunities Tackling areas of potential discrimination and social exclusion to ensure that the programme is delivered equitably and appropriately Ensuring that the beneficiaries of the programme do not receive less favourable treatment because of age, ethnic origin, disability, gender, religion and sexual orientation nor by reason of any other condition or requirement that cannot be shown to be justifiable Carrying out of audits and maintaining monitoring arrangements designed to identify areas of equality development and to support relevant action plans


Sustainable Development

Consultation with service users, community groups and partner organisations about the development and implementation of its equality objectives • Securing the support of partners and contractors for its equality objectives Give details of the approach to be taken for the whole measure in terms of sustainable development. The Rural Development Programme for England will be delivered to all people in the County in ways which will enhance the quality of life for people today whilst protecting the local and global environment for the future. This will be achieved by working towards the following objectives: • • • • • • • • • • • •

Minimise growth in carbon emissions Make more efficient use of natural resources and produce less waste Produce lower levels of pollution and improve the quality of our air, sea and river water Create a more ecologically diverse natural environment Communicate the contribution businesses, people and communities can make Promote social inclusion by ensuring that basic needs for all rural Lancashire’s citizens are met more locally and through sustainable transport solutions Promote more opportunities for work for all sections of the community in a diverse economy Create social, environmental and economic conditions which lead to improvements in the health of rural Lancashire’s citizens Provide equal access to facilities, goods, services and people whilst respecting environmental limits Ensure that lifelong learning opportunities are available to all by providing equal access to education, training and information Empower all sections of the community to participate in the decision making process to create neighbourhoods and communities in all parts of rural Lancashire, which are valued by the people who live in them Encourage enterprise and innovation to create sustainable solutions

ACTIVITY ONE Description of Proposed Activity

A short description of the scope of the proposed activity. If you have more than one activity which you intend to deliver through this measure please enter details of your second activity below. This measure will provide support to existing micro-enterprises or to persons wishing to set up new micro-enterprises not involved in Annex 1 activities. All beneficiaries will be encouraged to show consideration of carbon mitigation measures as a part of project


Type of Support

proposals. Give details of what form the support will take, e.g. grants to individuals, including any specific exclusions. Grant aid will provide; • • • • • •

Beneficiaries

Total Cost Intervention Rate (%) Coverage

Indicators and Targets

Capital funding for development Revenue support for market research and feasibility studies Revenue support for marketing, product development, branding and design costs Revenue support for technical skills acquisition, coaching and mentoring Revenue support for bespoke training intrinsic to individual project applications Revenue support for technical support to help new businesses become established and to help existing businesses to consolidate and expand Give details of the beneficiaries the activity will support, e.g. individuals, micro-enterprises, SMEs or training providers. • Micro-enterprises • Persons wishing to set up a new micro-enterprise Give details of the total cost of the activity including other sources of funding. £1,505,000 Give details of the proposed intervention rate to support this activity. A maximum of 50% depending upon the limits imposed by the de minimis rules. Provide details on the coverage of support, e.g. spatial or thematic targeting. Across the sub-region with an emphasis on underperforming and lagging districts and outlying Severely Disadvantaged and Disadvantaged Areas. Provide details of the indicators and targets from the draft RDPE which the activity will deliver. 500 micro-enterprises supported Businesses supported under the RDPE show an increase in GVA (as measured by growth in profitability) which is equal to or greater than in other similar businesses in England Actual jobs created or sustained by supported businesses are at least 85% of the number of jobs predicted at the time of application Reduce the gap in productivity between the least well performing quartile of rural areas and the English median Raise the firm formation rate


Delivery Area

Increase the number of people in the workforce Reduce CO2 emissions per unit (ÂŁ) of GVA Indicate whether this activity could be delivered either regionally or sub-regionally.

Demarcation

This activity would best be delivered sub-regionally. Give details of whether this activity could be delivered via any other funding stream such as ESF or ERDF. This activity could not be delivered by any other funding stream because of demarcation between structural funds and the prioritisation of national grant. Provision under the RDPE will integrate with, and be additional to, other business support.

RDPE Measure Code Rationale for Intervention

313 – Encouragement of tourism

A short text justifying the needs for and the benefits of the intervention through the RDPE linking to the available evidence base. This also needs to demonstrate consistency with both the draft RDPE and the North West RIP. “The England Rural Development Programme 2000-2006 (and Objective One EAGGF) provided substantial investment for new tourist accommodation and in upgrading tourist accommodation, with some associated marketing. In most parts of the country, there remains limited justification for public intervention at individual business level except where there are significant wider benefits that can be achieved. However, there are opportunities to improve the services offered and make rural tourism more sustainable, e.g. by forging better links between the businesses and their local environmental and cultural assets (including food and drink), and by encouraging collaboration and more effective use of ICT. There is also the potential for investments in recreational infrastructure (e.g. long distance walking, cycling and riding routes) to deliver both economic and health benefits. Further progress needs to be made in improving the environmental performance of the businesses themselves (e.g. through resource efficiency, adoption of renewable energy; and promoting the use of public transport and car-free holidays). It is in areas such as these that targeted intervention is needed. Rural tourism activity is fundamentally linked to the local environmental, landscape and heritage offer. As such, sustainable tourism is a priority area of development for rural tourism in England. Designated land, such as National Parks, indicates landscapes of national importance and therefore where there are in particular wider public benefits from managing visitor impacts sustainably and effectively. In addition, some regions have identified fragile environments as being especially vulnerable to visitor impacts. Encouragement of rural tourism activities is also important for rural employment. Rural tourism can also benefit from close links with agriculture, through its role in landscape management, diversifying into provision of tourism services and through linkages with regional and local food which form part of the offer to tourists. Encouraging collaboration between food


and tourism businesses would increase local rural economic benefits, such as employment, from tourism. Regions have also identified specific rural tourism business needs, such as increased use of ICT.” (Rural Development Programme for England 2007-2013, p. 5-303, paras. 1202-1204.) “The region's natural environmental resources - its natural capital - has an estimated value to the Northwest's economy of around £2.5 billion, much of it through rural businesses that are directly reliant on the environment, such as fishing, forestry or outdoor pursuits. An estimated 48,000 tourism jobs alone are judged to be reliant on a high quality environment. Protecting our natural environmental resources is of primary importance in protecting environment-dependant jobs and is important to creating new business opportunities for the future.” (Rural Development Programme for England The Implementation Plan for England’s Northwest 2007 – 2013, pp. 7-8.) “The landscapes of the NW region include densely-populated cities and extensive urban fringe areas though 80% is farmland including large expanses of sparsely-populated upland areas and scenic countryside. The region has a remarkable range of habitats – from major estuaries such as Morecambe Bay, to the lakes and uplands of the Lake District and North Pennines. Approximately 29% of the region is subject to statutory landscape designation, comprising the Lake District, Yorkshire Dales and Peak District National Parks and Arnside Silverdale, Forest of Bowland, Solway and North Pennines Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty. In addition, the UK Government is a cosignatory of the European Landscape Convention which gives specific duties towards the conservation and enhancement of all landscapes. The region also has responsibilities resulting from a wealth of European and international ecological designations. These rich landscape and biodiversity assets provide an essential resource for public enjoyment and recreation, and underpin much of the tourism activity in the region. Of major significance are the region’s upland areas, much being subject to statutory landscape and ecological designation. Ensuring continued support for these public goods in light of the impact of further CAP reform constitutes a major challenge for the region. 30% of England’s common land is in the NW, many being large upland sites with high ecological status. The challenge is achieving coherent management of this asset through intervention, capable of addressing the inherent complexity of land management interests. 2070 km2 of the region is designated as Sites of Special Scientific Interest. The challenge is to improve the sustainable management of this rich resource. Currently 18% is in poor condition due to unsustainable management – particularly upland, river, lake, limestone pavement/grassland and woodland habitats. The North West’s contribution to the England Biodiversity Strategy, through 5 Local Biodiversity Action Plans, will improve the quality and extent of many important habitats. Fragmentation and isolation of existing habitats which reduces habitat robustness, connectivity and expansion potential is also a significant issue, particularly in more developed and populated lowland areas and for large-scale upland habitats, including upland woodland/scrub.


In the North West there is a significant historic/archaeological asset base and designated historic environment assets. In addition there are many thousands of buildings, sites and features within a historic landscape context which are not legally protected but which provide a sense of place for the people who live in and visit the countryside and make the landscape of the North West so varied and attractive and which attract thousands of visitors every year. Changes to the NW region’s traditional rural landscapes are happening fast, through urban pressures, the partly unpredictable effects of climate change, the need for renewable energy production, and through economic changes affecting agriculture, not least the changes to agricultural support payments. This change offers challenges but also opportunities for increased environmentally focused management.” (Rural Development Programme for England The Implementation Plan for England’s Northwest 2007 – 2013, p. 9.) There is a specific role for the RDPE in developing sustainable tourism, improving the quality of rural tourism, with particular regard to managing the environmental impacts from visitors on the environment and built heritage, and to enhance the values of the business operation, enhancing the quality of, and promotion of, our rural environmental inheritance. “The reliance on land-based business for employment and livelihood increases dramatically with ‘rurality’; in areas of the Forest of Bowland Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) the sector accounts for in excess of 22% of employment (compared to 3.8% average for Ribble Valley district). There is very limited incidence of growth sector businesses in the Forest of Bowland AONB and in parts of West Lancashire.” (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, pp. 10-11.) Lancashire has a wealth of environmental assets:” • 56 SSSIs including the Ribble Estuary and Morecambe Bay, together with a range of internationally designated sites with large areas of coastal and upland habitat • AONBs at Bowland and Arnside/Silverdale with a range of sensitive and vulnerable habitat and bio-diversity • National Nature Reserves at Ribble Estuary and Gait Barrows • RAMSAR sites at Ribble Estuary and Leighton Moss.” (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, p. 12.) “The fastest growing sectors (2002 – 2004 VAT registered business stock) in rural Lancashire have been Real Estate and Business, Construction and Hotels & Restaurants whilst the main decline has been in manufacturing, wholesale and retail and agriculture.” (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, p. 13.) Regional Parks are being developed based around the Northwest Coastal Trail, Ribble Estuary, East Lancashire and potentially Morecambe Bay. “Rural Lancashire benefits from large areas of ‘open access’ land and long distance trails which provide opportunity (commercial and quality of life) for active leisure and recreation.” (Co-ordinated


Actions for Rural Lancashire, p. 14.) In 2006 the visitor economy in Lancashire and Blackpool was worth £2.52 billion and a total 58 million visitors helped to support 48,694 jobs within the sector (source: STEAM report compiled by Global Tourism Solutions (UK) Ltd.) Of this total 10.5 million visitors were welcomed in rural parts of the sub-region and they generated £496 million revenue for the visitor economy. Visitor numbers are dominated by day visitors who totalled 8.7 million for the same year. The rural sector makes a significant contribution to the visitor economy within the Lancashire and Blackpool subregion which is large and diverse with over 80% of its geography dominated by rural areas. In order to sustain and increase this contribution, rural businesses need to address a number of key challenges: • • • •

• • •

Over 80% of tourism businesses are small or micro-businesses that most commonly lack the resources and knowledge to invest in product development and innovation, quality, staff training, skills development and market research. Whilst rural areas are richly endowed with a variety of tourism products, quality is variable. Declining visitor numbers and low occupancy levels have led to a lack of investment. Organisations need to become engaged with quality schemes. Poor financial returns within a number of agricultural sectors are forcing many rural businesses to look at diversification. Rural tourism is a big opportunity for businesses to develop to meet the market demand for short breaks in unspoilt countryside locations. The tourism product is delivered and promoted by a wide range of organisations – commercial operators, local authorities and other public funded agencies. Organisations need to work collectively, where appropriate, to reduce fragmentation, duplication of effort, large variations in quality and a diluted and inconsistent image of the tourism product across the sub-region. The natural assets and rich heritage of the sub-region are one of its strengths that need to be further exploited with better links between businesses and their local environmental and cultural assets. Customer expectations have risen and a higher quality visitor experience is essential. Individual business development needs to be supported through improvements to the public realm, both transportation and recreational infrastructure and visitor information. SMEs tend not to have common access to research and intelligence whilst larger organisations may have such resources but no incentive to share this information. If the sector is to meet and respond flexibly to customer expectations it needs to invest in customer databases, research and appraisal of products/services so that the necessary intelligence is available to understand current demands and anticipate future ones.


Objectives of the Intervention

SMEs are often limited in terms of ICT usage due to a lack of ICT knowledge and resources. Collaboration and support to promote and assist with the more effective use of current and emerging technologies is required. A concise statement giving details of what the intervention is intended to achieve. Objectives should follow the SMART criteria and also should demonstrate consistency with both the draft RDPE and the North West RIP. Enhancing the environment and countryside – by focusing on positive improvements to the infrastructure and greater benefits of and for the natural and, historic environment and cultural heritage by promoting public access and understanding of the countryside. Enhancing opportunities in rural areas – by developing initiatives that improve the quality of rural tourism by working with ‘cluster groups’ to identify niche and specialist markets.

Allocation (%)

Equal Opportunities

Skills, knowledge transfer and capacity building - by delivering ‘smarter marketing’ training courses and assisting small rural tourism enterprises with ‘on-line’ trading to develop bookable packages, providing knowledge transfer and innovation. Percentage allocation of funding to delivered through this measure. To be cumulated on an axis basis therefore total percentage allocation to axis 1, for example, should total 100% across the measures. 10% Give details of the approach to be taken for the whole measure in terms of equality of opportunity. The diversity of the people and communities of Lancashire will be recognised in the delivery of the Rural Development Programme for England, all partners involved in delivery of the programme will be required to give consideration to: • • • • •

Sustaining progress on the implementation of equal opportunities Tackling areas of potential discrimination and social exclusion to ensure that the programme is delivered equitably and appropriately Ensuring that the beneficiaries of the programme do not receive less favourable treatment because of age, ethnic origin, disability, gender, religion and sexual orientation nor by reason of any other condition or requirement that cannot be shown to be justifiable Carrying out of audits and maintaining monitoring arrangements designed to identify areas of equality development and to support relevant action plans Consultation with service users, community groups and partner organisations about the development and


Sustainable Development

implementation of its equality objectives • Securing the support of partners and contractors for its equality objectives Give details of the approach to be taken for the whole measure in terms of sustainable development. The Rural Development Programme for England will be delivered to all people in the County in ways which will enhance the quality of life for people today whilst protecting the local and global environment for the future. This will be achieved by working towards the following objectives: • • • • • • • • • • • •

Minimise growth in carbon emissions Make more efficient use of natural resources and produce less waste Produce lower levels of pollution and improve the quality of our air, sea and river water Create a more ecologically diverse natural environment Communicate the contribution businesses, people and communities can make Promote social inclusion by ensuring that basic needs for all rural Lancashire’s citizens are met more locally and through sustainable transport solutions Promote more opportunities for work for all sections of the community in a diverse economy Create social, environmental and economic conditions which lead to improvements in the health of rural Lancashire’s citizens Provide equal access to facilities, goods, services and people whilst respecting environmental limits Ensure that lifelong learning opportunities are available to all by providing equal access to education, training and information Empower all sections of the community to participate in the decision making process to create neighbourhoods and communities in all parts of rural Lancashire, which are valued by the people who live in them Encourage enterprise and innovation to create sustainable solutions

ACTIVITY ONE Description of Proposed Activity

A short description of the scope of the proposed activity. If you have more than one activity which you intend to deliver through this measure please enter details of your second activity below. Support for infrastructure development, particularly but not exclusively to the Forest of Bowland AONB, Arnside & Silverdale AONB, West Pennine Moors and Ribble Coast & Wetlands – for small scale interpretation and signposting, offering access to natural areas. Provision to improve the quality of existing rural products to enhance the visitor facilities and experiences, including


the vast range of tourism assets that span heritage, faith tourism, wildlife, food & drink and outdoor pursuits, the regional and country parks, Public Rights of Way Networks and Bridleways, both on the Pennine Moors and for the North Lancashire Bridleway and the Lancashire Coastline. Strengthening the rural product offer for the sub-region and developing new tourism opportunities in rural areas along the principles of eco-tourism and expanding on green tourism across the sub-region and improving the environmental performance of businesses.

Type of Support

All beneficiaries will be encouraged to show consideration of carbon mitigation measures as a part of project proposals. Give details of what form the support will take, e.g. grants to individuals, including any specific exclusions. Grant aid will provide; • • • • • •

Beneficiaries

Total Cost Intervention Rate (%) Coverage

Capital funding for development Revenue support for feasibility studies Revenue support toward the cost of establishing collaborative initiatives Revenue support for marketing and market development activities Revenue support for bespoke training intrinsic to individual projects Revenue support for technical support to help new businesses become established and to help existing businesses to improve the quality of their services, consolidate and expand Give details of the beneficiaries the activity will support, e.g. individuals, micro-enterprises, SMEs or training providers. Local Authorities etc., existing and new cluster groups and individual existing and new tourism enterprises. Give details of the total cost of the activity including other sources of funding. £380,000 Give details of the proposed intervention rate to support this activity. A maximum of 50%. Provide details on the coverage of support, e.g. spatial or thematic targeting. Across the sub-region with an emphasis on underperforming and lagging districts and outlying Severely Disadvantaged and Disadvantaged Areas.


Indicators and Targets

Provide details of the indicators and targets from the draft RDPE which the activity will deliver.

Delivery Area

35 new tourism actions supported £0.8m Total volume of investment Additional number of tourist visits Businesses supported under the Rural Development Programme for England show a rate of growth in profitability, net of other factors, that is greater than the average for other similar businesses in England Actual jobs created or sustained by supported businesses are at least 85% of the number of jobs predicted at the time of application Reduce the gap in productivity between the least well performing quartile of rural areas and the English median Raise the firm formation rate Increase the number of people in the workforce Reduce CO2 emissions per unit (£) of GVA Indicate whether this activity could be delivered either regionally or sub-regionally.

Demarcation

This activity would best be delivered sub-regionally. Give details of whether this activity could be delivered via any other funding stream such as ESF or ERDF. This activity could not be delivered by any other funding stream because of demarcation between structural funds and the prioritisation of national grant. Provision under the RDPE will integrate with, and be additional to, other business support.

RDPE Measure Code Rationale for Intervention

321 – Basic Services

A short text justifying the needs for and the benefits of the intervention through the RDPE linking to the available evidence base. This also needs to demonstrate consistency with both the draft RDPE and the North West RIP. “[T]here are issues that adversely affect the rural population’s ability to access services. Provision of local services such as small-scale transport arrangements, local shops and community facilities would help to this end. Often, this targeting can be most effectively done by local people with a detailed understanding of their needs…” (Rural Development Programme for England 2007-2013, p. 5-307, para. 1214.) “25,302 rural households (one in four) are identified as being deprived by two IMD indicators. In excess of 30,000 people (from a total of 107,000 households) in rural areas are providing some form of unpaid social care; the


Objectives of the Intervention

Allocation (%)

Equal Opportunities

incidence increases with rurality. 45% of households in rural Lancashire have access to only one (or no) private car or van; this vehicle is highly likely to be used to access the workplace (over 80% of journeys to work in rural districts are by private car). 48% of households in rural Lancashire are in excess of 2km from a GP surgery. 69% of households in rural Lancashire are in excess of 2km from a secondary school.” (Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire, pp. 11-12.) A concise statement giving details of what the intervention is intended to achieve. Objectives should follow the SMART criteria and also should demonstrate consistency with both the draft RDPE and the North West RIP. “To improve or maintain the living conditions and welfare of those living in rural areas and to increase the attractiveness of such areas through the provision of more and better basic services for the economy and the rural population.” (Rural Development Programme for England 2007-2013, p. 5-307, para. 1216.) Percentage allocation of funding to delivered through this measure. To be cumulated on an axis basis therefore total percentage allocation to axis 1, for example, should total 100% across the measures. 15% Give details of the approach to be taken for the whole measure in terms of equality of opportunity. The diversity of the people and communities of Lancashire will be recognised in the delivery of the Rural Development Programme for England, all partners involved in delivery of the programme will be required to give consideration to: • •

Sustainable Development

Sustaining progress on the implementation of equal opportunities Tackling areas of potential discrimination and social exclusion to ensure that the programme is delivered equitably and appropriately • Ensuring that the beneficiaries of the programme do not receive less favourable treatment because of age, ethnic origin, disability, gender, religion and sexual orientation nor by reason of any other condition or requirement that cannot be shown to be justifiable • Carrying out of audits and maintaining monitoring arrangements designed to identify areas of equality development and to support relevant action plans • Consultation with service users, community groups and partner organisations about the development and implementation of its equality objectives • Securing the support of partners and contractors for its equality objectives Give details of the approach to be taken for the whole measure in terms of sustainable development. The Rural Development Programme for England will be delivered to all people in the County in ways which will


enhance the quality of life for people today whilst protecting the local and global environment for the future. This will be achieved by working towards the following objectives: • • • • • • • • • • • •

Minimise growth in carbon emissions Make more efficient use of natural resources and produce less waste Produce lower levels of pollution and improve the quality of our air, sea and river water Create a more ecologically diverse natural environment Communicate the contribution businesses, people and communities can make Promote social inclusion by ensuring that basic needs for all rural Lancashire’s citizens are met more locally and through sustainable transport solutions Promote more opportunities for work for all sections of the community in a diverse economy Create social, environmental and economic conditions which lead to improvements in the health of rural Lancashire’s citizens Provide equal access to facilities, goods, services and people whilst respecting environmental limits Ensure that lifelong learning opportunities are available to all by providing equal access to education, training and information Empower all sections of the community to participate in the decision making process to create neighbourhoods and communities in all parts of rural Lancashire, which are valued by the people who live in them Encourage enterprise and innovation to create sustainable solutions

ACTIVITY ONE Description of Proposed Activity

A short description of the scope of the proposed activity. If you have more than one activity which you intend to deliver through this measure please enter details of your second activity below. • • • • • • •

Development of community buildings to provide services Developing community enterprises to provide key services e.g. childcare/eldercare Development of outreach service solutions Development of community transport solutions Development of the capacity of rural communities and their representatives Improvement of joint working across Public Sector service providers Εnergy services – e.g. woodfuel based heat/and or power system for village/community buildings

Any activity that is a statutory responsibility of local or national government is excluded from support under this Measure.


Type of Support

Beneficiaries

Total Cost Intervention Rate (%) Coverage

Indicators and Targets

Delivery Area

All beneficiaries will be encouraged to show consideration of carbon mitigation measures as a part of project proposals. Give details of what form the support will take, e.g. grants to individuals, including any specific exclusions. • Capital funding for development • Revenue support for community capacity building activity, training and facilitation/technical support • Revenue support for the establishment of new initiatives Give details of the beneficiaries the activity will support, e.g. individuals, micro-enterprises, SMEs or training providers. Businesses,social enterprises, charities, and other formally constituted groups and individuals wishing to establish the same, and their specialist advisors. Give details of the total cost of the activity including other sources of funding. £565,000 Give details of the proposed intervention rate to support this activity. A maximum of 100% depending on the extent of any commercial return and the limits imposed by the de minimis rules. Provide details on the coverage of support, e.g. spatial or thematic targeting. Across the sub-region with an emphasis on underperforming and lagging districts and outlying Severely Disadvantaged and Disadvantaged Areas. Provide details of the indicators and targets from the draft RDPE which the activity will deliver. 10 supported actions £0.8M Total volume of investment? Population in rural areas benefiting from improved services Businesses supported under the RDPE show a rate of growth in profitability, net of other factors, that is greater than the average for other similar businesses in England Actual jobs created or sustained by supported businesses are at least 85% of the number of jobs predicted at the time of application Improve the accessibility of services for rural people Reduce CO2 emissions per unit (£) of GVA Indicate whether this activity could be delivered either regionally or sub-regionally. This activity would best be delivered sub-regionally.


Demarcation

Give details of whether this activity could be delivered via any other funding stream such as ESF or ERDF. This activity could not be delivered by any other funding stream because of demarcation between structural funds and the prioritisation of national grant. Provision under the RDPE will integrate with, and be additional to, other community and business support.

http://www.nwda.co.uk/docs/Lancashire%20Plan_15oct07  

http://www.nwda.co.uk/docs/Lancashire%20Plan_15oct07.doc

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