RURAL DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME FOR ENGLAND
PROPOSAL FOR GREATER MANCHESTER IMPLEMENTATION PLAN
Prepared on behalf of The Greater Manchester Sub Regional Partnership by: Manchester Enterprises Ltd Churchgate House 56 Oxford Street Manchester M60 7HJ GM RIP Final Draft
CONTENTS 1. Introduction 2. Rural Greater Manchester Context 2.1 Economic Context 2.2 The Challenges 2.4 Greater Manchester Rural Map 3. Strategy 3.1 Introduction 3.2 National Strategies 3.3 Regional Strategies 3.4 Local Strategies 4. Priorities and Objectives 4.1 Introduction 4.2 Axis 1: Improving competitiveness of the agricultural and forestry sector 4.3 Axis 3: Quality of life in rural areas and diversification of the rural economy 4.4 Axis 4: LEADER – Cross Cutting Axis 4.5 Eligible Actions 5. Financial Resources 5.1 Introduction 5.2 Priority breakdown 6. Implementation 6.1 Management Arrangement 6.2 Monitoring and Evaluation 6.3 Additionality and Complementarity with other Community Programmes 6.4 Communication 6.5 Gender Equality and Non-discrimination Appendix 1 – Greater Manchester Rural Eligible Areas Appendix 2 – List of contributors to the preparation of the Greater Manchester Rural Implementation Plan Appendix 3 - Glossary
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1. INTRODUCTION The next Rural Development Programme in England (RDPE) will run from 2007-2013. DEFRA has submitted to the European Commission: ⋅
A National Strategy Plan; and
A National Programme document, setting out the proposed Rural Development Programme details.
The proposed Programme will combine agri-environment and socio-economic elements. From 2007, Natural England and the Forestry Commission will be responsible for the delivery of the agri-environment elements and the Regional Development Agencies will deliver a new socio-economic programme under the RDPE. DEFRA has requested each region to produce an Implementation Plan to set out the evidence base for rural investment and the overarching strategic objectives for the region. The Rural Development Programme for England will be implemented in the North West through the Regional Implementation Plan. Development of this Plan is a joint process with partners across the region, co-ordinated by the NWDA. This will form a part of the Rural Development Programme for England 2007-2013. This Greater Manchester Implementation Plan outlines the proposed use of the available RDPE funds in the sub-region over the next seven years. The Greater Manchester Position Previous RDPE activity in Greater Manchester (GM) has been delivered from outside the sub-region, by the Lancashire Rural Partnership in the Northern Local Authority areas and by the Cheshire Partnership in the South. This has proved unsatisfactory – there has been no definitive tracking of activity or consistency of methodology or reporting with deliverers not working in a cohesive or joined up manner. Equally, the Local Authorities, dependant on the significance of ‘Rural’ within their boundaries and on their Agenda have not been consistent in their approach. This combination has led to a fragmented approach to delivery with little information available at sub-regional level, such information as there is patchy and inconsistent,. This position is not satisfactory in light of the sub-regional agenda for either funding or delivery of appropriate and relevant funds to support rural economic development. The newness of RDPE to GM, the greater and more directly perceived relevance and the opportunity it presents to support the rural sector in GM will demand dedicated delivery capacity and a high level of competence. The Sub Regional Partnership sees the best way forward as being through a single point of delivery which can provide leadership, guidance and has the necessary programme delivery expertise and resource to segue into a cohesive and coherent mode delivery, tracking, monitoring and evaluation. To this end it is a fundamental element of this Plan that the first activity to be funded is a full and comprehensive Baseline Study of rural economic circumstance, establishing the extent of need, opportunity and such activity as may be built upon. It is not expected that any major activity would be commissioned prior to the outcome of this
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Study without strong supportive evidence of need and fit with the Regional Economic Strategy and the Sub Regional Action Plan.
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2. RURAL GREATER MANCHESTER CONTEXT 2.1 Economic Context Greater Manchester is not a homogeneous area but a diverse mix of high value and performing economic centres adjacent to some of the most deprived communities in the country. This mix gives the city region a unique profile and set of challenges in raising its Gross Value Added (GVA). The sub-region comprises the cities of Salford and Manchester and the eight local authority boroughs of Bury, Bolton, Oldham, Rochdale, Stockport, Tameside, Trafford and Wigan. Agriculture plays an important role in the rural economy of Greater Manchester and is accountable for the management of over 40,000 hectares of land. It is a key contributor to the rural economy of the area, despite declining farm incomes. There are over 1,300 registered agricultural holdings within the Metropolitan area, employing around 3,000 people. Many of the holdings are classed as smallholdings (more than 2/3 of all holdings are less than 20 hectares in size). Of the full-time holdings a significant proportion are dairy farms, which are located mainly in the north of the area. However it is worth mentioning that some farming enterprises do find it difficult to maintain a position in the competitive market even where the arable farm holding are large scale, and located on the highest quality agricultural land in GM. The industry also generates additional employment both through ancillary industries and indirectly through other sectors such as tourism, leisure, financial and professional services and creative industries. Tourism is an important industry within the sub-region with many farm businesses gaining a significant proportion of income from tourism and recreation. There still, however, remain rural areas of the GM Authorities which are less developed in terms of tourism and leisure but with the potential to take advantage of assets such as long distance walks, wildlife and biodiversity, historical features and recreational opportunities, especially in the urban fringe areas. A vibrant and accessible countryside is important for the environment and the quality of life. It supports the tourism industry and enhances our image as a clean and healthy sub-region. There are also opportunities for farmers on the urban fringe to take advantage of the increased leisure time available to the majority of the huge urban population living with easy traveling distance of their holding. This can present many opportunities for diversification. However, there are some particular matters that should be considered such as Green Belt policies and certain disadvantages associated with farming in the urban fringe areas such as worrying of livestock, trespass, theft and vandalism, and so on. It is essential that employment opportunities are maintained and created in rural areas in order to sustain rural communities and reduce the need to travel. Other industries at the centre of the new rural economy helping to achieve this goal are the financial and professional services, creative industries and the food sector. Financial and professional services provide a key part of the supporting infrastructure for other rural businesses. The largest corporate finance centre outside of London, Greater Manchester is thriving in terms of venture capital and corporate finance activity.
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Arts and creative industries will also play a key role in the transformation of the rural areas of Greater Manchester. The relocation of the BBC to Salford and the Media City development will attract huge range of media-related activity from advertising to design, video games to music, creating new employment opportunities and new businesses. The food sector in Greater Manchester is made up of around 400 companies and is worth over £900m. With its high quality infrastructure, a large, skilled labour force and very competitive operating costs, Manchester is a world-class location for companies operating in the food industry. Traditional sector strengths in the region include production and processing of bakery, snack, confectionery and meat products as well as brewing. More recently, lifestyle changes have driven growth in niche industries such as convenience, health and indulgence food production.
2.2 The Challenge Previous rural activity has been conducted in a disparate and piecemeal un-coordinated manner by a variety of, principally external, animators within GM. Some of this has taken place under the aegis of generically funded programmes/initiatives and has not necessarily been tracked as rural. The available data sources are not consistent across the sub-region making it difficult to apply a coherent baseline. A number of factors have contributed to this situation: ⋅
Local Authorities with significant rural areas have given a definitive priority to actions whilst others with sparse rural coverage have only given a minimum of attention.
Some deliverers have a very specific agenda or remit e.g. Community Forests.
Some rural support has been delivered by bodies operating from outside of the sub-region, making it difficult to extract any information.
Training has not always been accredited to rural recipients, as rurality is not necessarily a required indicator.
Due to the fragmented and diffuse nature of the rural agenda and focus within GM it is unlikely at the present time that a Leader style approach could be accommodated within the Sub Region. The approach adopted will nevertheless be partnership based as at the highest level the GM Forum sits as the Sub Regional Partnership and all activity would sit under that. It is clear from feedback received throughout the SRIP development and consultation process that whilst some areas across the sub region might aspire to the Leader style of delivery that there are issues around the definition of those areas both in absolute population terms and in relation to the lack of critical mass of resources and suitable capacity ‘on the ground’. Such very small, defined areas excluding the surrounding hinterland would be contrary to the aspiration of the Plan and the RDPE programme itself. It is an aspiration of this Plan to support the economic capacity building across all the sub regional rural areas and ensure that in future there will be degrees of selfdetermination. This applies both in geographically defined communities and communities and associations of activities for example, rural business support networks that can come together as a sub regional forum to inform the agenda and speak with a collaborative voice.
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Further there is a perceived need to explore the relationships between the Market Towns and the rural hinterland. GMCVO have, in the last year, undertaken a project funded through Defra’s Rural Social and Community Programme with a view to creating a Rural Resource Unit and developing a Rural Community Plan. The resulting report ‘On the Edge?’ has recently been published and highlights the perceived needs from a community development perspective. Particular and consistent concerns relate to transport and access issues. A significant Baseline Study within the first year of the RDPE in GM from the Economic Development perspective would build on this and provide a clear, consistent baseline for delivery based on definitive deprivation, identified needs and opportunities together with potential activities the outcomes of which could be measured and evaluated to inform future activity and associated funding applications across the Sub Region. 2.3 Greater Manchester Rural Map It should be noted that the apportionment methodology utilised by the Regional Development Agency to intimate the programme share to the sub-regions mirrors that used by DEFRA at a national level for regional apportionment. This unfortunately does not equate to the land based maps produced under the Public Benefit Recording System as promoted by the Forestry Commission also from DEFRA statistics. The GM Sub Region Partnership (SRP) proposes to use the DEFRA census based population maps. This is viewed as being more equitable in reach and in enabling support across the broader spectrum of rurality. It will also be consistent with the DEFRA funded GMCVO project. This will enable projects to be checked against postcodes for locational eligibility. We should look for flexibility during the life of the programme with regards to eligibility areas. New rural areas may be incorporated or removed from the map depending on the findings identified by baseline information and the programme mid-term evaluation. The Baseline Study undertaken during the first year of the Programme will help to shape the rural map and provide indicators of changes or adaptations that need to be made. The SRP is also conscious of the need to identify and support rural activity in those areas which are considered rural but which do not fit on to the map as defined by the statistics at present i.e. are potentially ‘fringe’. It is anticipated that the Baseline Study proposed will identify these areas and inform any amendments that may be promoted at the mid term stage of the programme. Greater Manchester Sub-regional Partnership is also conscious of the opportunities and benefits that cross border work between sub-regions and regions can bring to the rural areas. Linkages with other cross border initiatives such as Pennine Prospects will be explored in order to meet the needs of local businesses and provide new opportunities to local people.
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Map Dara: Crown Copyright Crown Copyright material is reproduced with the permis sion of the controller of HMSO and the Queen's printer for Scotland
Output Areas Rural / Urban Definition Urban Less Sparse Tow n & Fringe Less Sparce Village Less Sparse Dispersed
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3. STRATEGY 3.1 Introduction This section sets out how the Greater Manchester Rural Implementation Plan will help to address the main challenges identified by a series of relevant key European, National, Regional and Local strategies. Section 4 identifies current and future developments in policies and delivery systems that may have an impact on the programme.
3.2 Community Strategies Lisbon Agenda The Lisbon Agenda cuts across a spectrum of different issues, including entrepreneurship, social enterprise, employment, sustainable development, innovation, and corporate governance. At the Spring European Council in March 2005, EU Heads of Government re-launched the Lisbon Strategy with a new focus on jobs and growth. The vision of GM Implementation Plan within the context of the Lisbon Agenda is that of geographic units that contain populations with the skills, attitudes and culture that are able to respond to a changing economic and employment environment; communities with the physical, social and cultural capital that is able to respond to new opportunity and to develop integrated and coherent responses to their own areas; and environments that are attractive to live in and that have a breadth and depth of services necessary to meet the reasonable expectations of a population living in a 21st Century developed country. Community Strategic Guidelines for Rural Development The Community rural development regulation defines the purpose and the scope of assistance from the rural development fund. The Community Strategic Guidelines identify within this framework the main areas for the realisation of Community priorities. The Community Guidelines identified under each Axis are as follows: ⋅
Guideline Axis 1 - Knowledge transfer and innovation in the food chain and priority sectors for investment in physical and human capital.
Guideline Axis 2 - Biodiversity and preservation of high nature value farming and forestry systems, water, and climate change.
Guideline Axis 3 - Creation of employment opportunities.
Guideline Axis 4 - Improving governance and mobilising the endogenous development potential of rural areas.
The priorities in this Implementation Plan will primarily support the first and third guidelines; however these will also contribute indirectly to the others.
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3.3 National Strategies Rural Strategy 2004 The Rural Strategy 2004 takes as its starting point the vision of sustainable development for rural areas set out in the 2000 Rural White Paper, which remains the Government's vision. It is based on targeting greatest need, working in partnership at national, regional and local level and, above all, putting rural customers first. The Rural Strategy sets out three key priorities: ⋅
Social and economic regeneration - supporting enterprise across rural England, but targeting greater resources at areas of greatest need;
Social justice for all - tackling social exclusion wherever it occurs and providing fair access to services and opportunities for all rural people; and
Enhancing the value of the countryside - protecting the natural environment for this and future generations.
The GM Implementation Plan will contribute to the Government Strategies to support enterprises from rural areas of great need and enhancing the value of the countryside. Seven of the ten local authority areas within GM (72% of its population) are amongst the 15% most deprived in the country. Some GM rural areas from Oldham or Wigan are still experiencing income and employment deprivation. RDPE spending in GM will support rural enterprises from disadvantaged areas by raising their skill levels and providing them with the right support that will help them to become more profitable and competitive. Rural Development Programme for England 2007-2013 The Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE) is the Governments response to the European Unions Rural Development Regulation. The Programme will contribute to the delivery of the Government's Strategy for Sustainable Farming and Food by helping farmers and foresters to respond better to consumer requirements and become more competitive, diverse, flexible and environmentally responsible. It also provides help to rural businesses and communities which need to adapt and develop. The RDPE provides the framework for the operation of separate but integrated regional programmes. RDPE is structured around the three Axes of the Rural Development Regulation: .
Axis 1 – Improving the competitiveness of the agricultural and forestry sector.
Axis 2 – Improving the environment and the countryside.
Axis 3 – Quality of life in rural areas and diversification of the rural economy..
3.4 Regional Strategies The North West Rural Development Framework
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The North West Rural Development Framework (NWRDF) integrates and joins up delivery across the full range of activities impacting on rural areas and communities. The NWRDF identifies six rural priorities for the region: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.
Maximising the economic potential of the regionâ€™s rural areas. Supporting sustainable farming and food. Improving access to affordable rural housing. Ensuring fair access to service for rural communities. Empowering rural communities and addressing rural social exclusion. Enhancing the value of our rural environmental inheritance.
The GM Implementation Plan will directly support priorities one, two, five and six of the NWRDP. RDPE investment in Greater Manchester will be mainly focused on promoting the competitiveness and growth of rural businesses (e.g. farming, forestry, tourism) by investing on a range of activities and services including training and business advice tailored to rural needs and start up businesses. A number of actions will also contribute to the conservation of the rural heritage and the environment. Regional Economic Strategy The Regional Economic Strategy (RES) is the rolling 20-year strategy to shape the future economic direction of the Northwest with a particular focus on activities in the three years 2006 to 2009. The RES sets out a clear and measurable vision for the region, and outlines clear policies to deliver this vision with the actions required. The GM Implementation Plan contributes to the RES vision and directly supports a series of Actions. Section 4 sets out in more detail how the measures of this Implementation Plan link to the RES Actions.
3.5 Sub-regional Strategies Manchester City Region Sub-Regional Statement The Manchester City Region Sub-Regional Statement was prepared by the Steering Group for the Manchester City Region Sub-regional Strategy and agreed by AGMA. It was submitted to the North West Regional Assembly in September 2005. The statement focuses on the key policy areas of the economy, housing and transport, which are critical to the city regionâ€™s future. Among a series of key principles the Statement recognises the quality of the environment as one of the vital principles that can help to enhance both the image and the lifestyle of the sub-region. A positive image and high quality lifestyle will attract businesses, residents and tourists to the area. Green Infrastructure is featured as an element that should be integrated within any major development and regeneration scheme. Regional parks, tourism opportunities, a well-protected and interpreted heritage, biodiversity and connectivity are just some other elements that the Statement highlights as essentials of this strategy. By promoting community forestry, agriculture and rural development, the RDPE investment in GM will help to improve the image of the city region, reduce social exclusion, create a high quality environment, help to attract investment and support the provision of successful and sustainable neighbourhoods.
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GM Action Plan In addition to the RES, it is also important that the GM Rural Implementation Plan is aligned to the GM Action Plan. The Action Plan, which is currently being considered by the NWDA as part of their own Investment Plans, will articulate the strategic investment priorities for enterprise, skills and regeneration in Greater Manchester. The GM Rural Implementation Plan will contribute to address some of the key messages emerging from the Action Plan. GM Biodiversity Action Plan Greater Manchester, although often perceived as an urban conglomeration, has a wide and varied range of wildlife. The ten districts are characterised by different landscapes from the ancient wooded cloughs of Bolton, Bury and Stockport, the moorland expanses of Rochdale and Oldham and the vast reedbeds that characterise Wigan. The GM Biodiversity Action Plan contains 18 actions covering a range of habitats and species occurring in GM which needs to be protected for the future: Acid grassland, Bats, Bittern, Brown Hare, Canals, Floating Water Plantain, Great Crested Newt, Lowland broadleaved woodland, Marsh/marshy grassland, Mossland, Nightjar, Neutral grassland, Ponds and Lodges, Song Thrush, Twite, Upland Oak wood, Urban-Managed Greenspace, Water Vole. Other Strategies In addition to the above, the GM Implementation Plan will also complement and support other sub-regional and local strategies such as UDPs, Local Development Frameworks and the Community Forestry Plans. GMCVO have recently submitted a bid to Defraâ€™s Facilitation Fund with Oldham MBC to run a pilot action-research project to assist with understanding the practicalities, barriers and possibilities of embedding rural community needs into mainstream strategy at local government level, specifically in relation to the Local Area Agreement. The SRP will look closely at the outcomes of this and the potential of any roll out of activity or good practice. It may be that some of this activity could be supported under the RDPE subject to the outcome of the Baseline Study. Further it may be that there are positive lessons that may be taken on board by the SRP and in relation to Multi Area Agreements.
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4. PRIORITIES AND OBJECTIVES 4.1 Introduction The priorities indicated for targeting within GM sit within those prescribed at a national level and with the prioritisation exercise undertaken by the NWDA for the region. They are closely aligned to the actions within the Regional Economic Strategy (RES), the GM Sub-Region Implementation Plan and the priorities of the Regional Rural Delivery Framework. The targeting of the priorities has also been informed through discussion and consultation with Local Authorities and AGMA, and with a wider body of interest, under the GM Forum, including Chamberlink, the Forestry Commission, GMCVO, Red Rose Forest, Pennine Edge Forest, Groundwork, Marketing Manchester and the North West Farm Tourism Initiative among others. It is anticipated that this will widen as the programme moves closer to commencement to include food groups and initiatives, the National Farmers Union and so on. The SRP are cognisant that the changes to regional delivery of Business Links may impact interventions within the programme and will endeavour to accommodate this in delivery terms by seeking to avoid duplication of activity as it would for interventions under other programmes, i.e. ERDF, ESF etc.
Axis 1: Improving competitiveness of the agricultural and forestry sector. It is acknowledged that GM is not rural in the same sense as the ‘shire counties’; it does however have significant pockets of rurality widely dispersed across the sub-region. The rural areas of GM are extremely disparate in their nature from the moorland and uplands of Rochdale and Oldham through Bury and Bolton to the tracts of agriculture and green space of Wigan and Salford. Each of these areas will need differing levels and nature of intervention. The following measures have been selected for intervention under Axis 1: - these are indicative based on current perceptions and may need to reviewed following the findings of the Baseline Study or at the mid term evaluation stage •
Vocational training and information actions for persons engaged in agriculture, food or forestry sectors (Measure 111, RES Action 30).
Improving the economic value of forests (Measure 122, RES Action 117).
Adding value to Agricultural/Forestry Products (Measure 123, RES Action 8).
Co-operation for development of new products, processes and technologies in the agriculture, food and forestry sector (Measure 124).
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Axis 3: economy.
Quality of life in rural areas and diversification of the rural
GMCVO have recently completed a Study, funded by DEFRA, which details deprivation and need at community level within the sub region, however it stops short of a full, definitive and comprehensive economic study which the SRP wishes to see accommodated by the proposed Baseline Study and which will underpin the Rural Development Programme in GM. The following measures have been selected for intervention under Axis 3. As per the NWDA prioritisation for the programme greater emphasis will be placed on the Part 1 Measures. These are indicative based on current perceptions Part 1 Diversification of the Rural Economy Diversification into Non-agricultural activity (Measure 311, RES Action 30, 51) Micro business creation and development (Measure 312, RES Action 51, 56) Encouragement of Tourism Activities (Measure 313, RES Action 101) Part 2 Quality of Life in Rural Areas Basic Services for the rural population (Measure 321, RES Action 119) Conservation and upgrading of rural heritage (Measure 323, RES Action 115,119) Area studies information, training, animators, leaders, promotional events, partnerships (Measure 341, RES Action 109) To maximise resources and to ensure greatest integration within the Axes/Measures, it is possible that a project or projects may come forward through a deliverer who would work and co-ordinate a number of groups/communities possibly across Local Authorities boundaries, this would support a Leader style approach at Measure level
There is a requirement that a minimum of 5% of the RDPE spend be made using a LEADER style approach. LEADER will be regarded as a cross cutting axis which will be applied across axis 1 and 3. LEADER incorporates a “bottom-up” approach, whereby local action groups take the lead in identifying local needs, developing and promoting a local strategy and in the selection of projects. The Implementation Plan will assist local action groups to encourage and support the development of small-scale, innovative projects under Axis 1 and 3 that meet local needs in a sustainable way. This element will be informed by the Rural Resource Study undertaken by GMCVO and funded by DEFRA, the activities of the Local Authorities and Community Forests. It is acknowledged within GM that not having had direct access to rural funds under previous programmes that there is much to be done in terms of building the economic development capacity in rural areas in GM and that, effectively, GM is in a ‘sub’ Leader position. It is an aspiration of this programme that the economic development capacity be built and that will include developing the self GM RIP Final Draft
determination and the wherewithal to inform and influence the agenda in appropriate areas. Work also needs to be done in areas outside of the RDPE.
4.5 Eligible Actions The North West Regional Implementation Plan has identified a series of priority actions under four themes: (the RIP is under consultation, this detail may need change when the final document is published) 1. Making agriculture and forestry more competitive and sustainable – to be delivered through Axis 1 . . . . . . . .
Encourage and support collaborative activity amongst farm and forestry businesses Develop an economically viable farming food and forestry industry that is profitable, reconnected and responsive to its markets The modernisation and diversification of key employment sectors in rural areas Develop new markets for and add value to rural products Increase efficiency of use of energy Implement Sustainable Food and Farming Strategy Vocational training and development of skills to improve competitiveness Provision of advice to land managers to maximise value of land holding
2. Conserving and enhancing the environment and countryside – to be delivered by the Forestry Commission and Natural England through Axis 2. 3. Enhancing opportunity and quality of life in rural areas – to be delivered through Axis 3. . . . . . . . .
Build on entrepreneurial culture to improve micro-business formation Greater socio-economic functionality of multi-use centres Initiatives that improve the quality of rural tourism Initiatives that enhance the capacity of rural communities to work together Implementing good practice in rural service provision from the Rural Pathfinder Stimulate demand and capacity to increase recreational/access opportunities Small scale regeneration of derelict, underused and neglected land in rural areas Enhance long-term viability and earning capacity of existing micro-enterprises
4. Developing skills, knowledge transfer and capacity building – cross cutting theme. . . .
Improved skill access and employment within the Farming, Food and Forestry sectors Work with training network providers to increase the availability and diversity of vocational training Initiatives that tackle the root causes of low performance in the rural economy
It is expected that applications will be brought forward under the pre-dominant Measure addressed
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Activities that may be supported under the RIP in Greater Manchester Greater Manchester Implementation Plan will support activities that show clear links to the priorities actions identified by the NW Regional Implementation Plan.
Example of Eligible Activities in GM
The development of new markets and products, e.g. a local sourcing brand for GM Enhance skills in environmental tourism in the agricultural sector. Development of enterprises in new sectors such as recycling, Combined Heat and Power, etc
Axis 3 Axis 3
111 124 311 312 114 311 312 122 313 122 312 111 311 312 124 311 312 123 312 122 123 312 341
321 341 311 312 313 321
Axis 3 Enhance the role of gateway sites as one stop shop sites, shop windows for rural skills, services, training and products.
Axis 1 Axis 3
Development of woodland industry including development of tourism opportunities and training or education spaces. Enhance existing woodland areas to improve their economic value environment business support service to micro-businesses in rural areas I am nervous of the H&S element
Axis 1 Axis 3 Axis 1 Axis 3 Axis 1 Axis 3
Developing a GM Biomass project with specific outcomes that complement Intelligent Energy proposals and link with community/rural business and management uses. Promotional and negotiating skills development focused on agricultural sector. The training measures too? Development and promotion of specialist forestry/woodland craft related businesses â€“ potentially linked to retail cooperative opportunities. Feasibility studies, business plans and community appraisals for activity that fits the Axis 3 Measures. Establish a rural tourism information network linking service and accommodation providers with key visitor sites, services and facilities more effectively. Training for community group members on specialist areas such as project management or leadership. Development of local community hubs (as co-ordinated networks) Diversification of farms to provide enhanced visitor facilities
Axis 1 Axis 3
Support the economic base in villages including environmental/access improvements, support for young people and heritage improvement.
Axis 1 Axis 3 Axis 1
Axis 2: Improving the Environment and Countryside The SRP will work with the Forestry Commission and Natural England to maximise their intervention in Greater Manchester and facilitate integration with Axis 1 and 3. It is intended within the Appraisal Process that both the Forestry Commission and Natural England be consulted regarding each application brought forward under Axes 1 and 3 , with the capacity to comment and recommend
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Given the limited RDPE resources in GM, preferred projects should be those that address a combination of economic, social and sustainable rural needs. The needs of specific communities or business sectors will not however be ignored, and where ever possible projects will be encouraged to incorporate elements targeted to address particular needs.
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5. FINANCIAL RESOURCES 5.1 Introduction The resource to the programme will be the direct, co-financed, RDPE funding representing approximately 7.65% of the Regional allocation. An Intervention Rate, yet to be notified, is likely to be a requirement for the Programme. Whilst the sub-regional allocation provides an indication for targeting of funds as per Section 1 the GM SRP will target projects via the DEFRA population figures. The indicative budget, including ‘uplands uplift’ is in the region of £360,000 per annum, with approximately £200,000 indicated for Axis 1 and £160,000 for Axis 3. Comparative to the other sub-regions, with the exception of Merseyside, this is a relatively small programme of funds and will therefore require some nurturing to ensure that GM maximises the effectiveness of the interventions. The Tables below are indicative of where the interventions are likely to be most effective in addressing rural areas of need within the sub-region. As in the previous section activities to be funded will sit under the noted Articles and Measures. It is likely that the most effective projects will be those that cut across Measures.
5.2 Priority Breakdown Axis 1:
Improving competitiveness of the agricultural and forestry sector
Vocational training and information actions for persons engaged in ag, food or forestry sectors Improving the economic value of forests
Adding value to Agricultural/Forestry Products
Co-operation for development of new products, processes and technologies in the ag, food and forestry sector
% Allocation 30 45
Quality of life in rural areas and diversification of the rural economy
In keeping with the NWDA prioritisation for the programme, greater emphasis has Been placed on the Diversification of the Rural Economy measures, that is, the first Three measures in the Table below.
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Measure RDPE Measure 311 Diversification into Non-agricultural activity 312
Micro business creation and development
RES Action % Allocation 30, 51 20 51, 56
Encouragement of Tourism Activities
Basic Services for the economy and rural population
Conservation and upgrading of rural heritage
Area studies information, training, animators, leaders, promotional events, partnerships
Intervention rates will apply in each of the Measures. This means that applicants will be expected to find up to a percentage of the total Project costs applied for through the GM Implementation Plan. The remainder should come from private match funding only (to be defined), as the RDPE is co-funded by Central Government through DEFRA and this is viewed a 100% of the public funding available to projects. The intervention rate per Measure will be indicated when the call for proposals are announced. The SRP understands that there are is a small element of legacy commitment from the previous programme relating to GM, of approximately £90,000. Clarity is awaited on the exact figure and which Axis/Measure is impacted by this (likely to be Axis 1). Appropriate measures will be taken to ‘ring-fence’ relevant funds for this purpose. The SRP anticipates that projects will be prepared to commence from the early stages of the programme however this should not be until the proposed Baseline Study has been received and accepted. This is essential, particularly with regard to the relatively small nominal ‘allocation’ to GM, so that activity and expenditure is targeted in the most effective way to ensure that benefit and effect is not only maximised but can be used to inform future funding and activity. The SRP is aware that there is potential for a regional ‘top-slicing’ of the programme should appropriate projects be brought forward for example, relating to food or to business support. It is expected that these would be within the scope of the measures as indicated and where the activity is appropriate the SRP would support this action. Equally the SRP would expect full consultation on this from NWDA as it would need to be re-assured that project activity which may be appropriate in another Sub Region but is not relevant to GM is not imposed. , This may arise for example where the size of another sub region rural population may skew the benefit within the figures, The SRP would expect to review the allocation at the mid point of the programme and to liase with the NWDA should a virement or re-calculation be indicated.
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6. IMPLEMENTATION 6.1 As previously noted within the introduction and at Section 2 the SRP has expressed a preference for a single point of delivery of the RDPE in GM with the package of interventions being tendered and procured as a single project. This is due to the newness of the programme in terms of direct access, the lack of definitive Baseline information that would support activity in a consistent and cohesive manner across the Sub Region and a distinct distrust of external delivery based on past experience. It is considered that delivery by a single body with expertise in all elements of programme management and with a clear understanding of the needs of the sub region through the Sub Regional Action Plan, with capacity and ability to resource the appropriate guidance and support for potential applicants/deliverers and with the confidence of the Partners would be the best delivery vehicle within GM. The SRP would set up a Working Group to inform and govern the delivery by an appropriate single point of delivery vehicle which would be drawn from the wider GM Forum membership and relevant to the requirements and objectives of RDPE.
6.2 Additionality and Complementarity with other Community Programmes The SRP as governing body for all sub regional funds will ensure that RDPE activities do not overlap or duplicate other existing services. RDPE spending will not support activities for which other funding instruments are more appropriate. Spending will therefore aim at building and complementing those existing initiatives. COMMUNITY PROGRAMMES Structural Funds Programme 2007-2013 - Competitiveness Objective - to increase competitiveness and employment. The North West rural programme will complement the regional ERDF and the national ESF programme in England. The three Community Programmes will be informed by the same strategic approach at regional level. The Regional Economic Strategy has provided the framework for both regional programmes - ERDF and NWRDP. There will also be complementarity with the National ESF Programme. RDPE funding in GM will mainly focused on supporting the rural economy at local level, while ESF will primarily address rural issues as part of national and regional employment and skills strategies. The Entrepreneurship and Innovation Programme (Part of the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme) From 2007, this EU programme will bring together activities on entrepreneurship, SMEs, industrial competitiveness and innovation. It will specifically target SMEs and family firms that make up the large majority of enterprises in Europe. It will cover industrial and services sectors. It will encourage entrepreneurship and potential entrepreneurs both generally and in particular target groups, paying special attention to gender issues.
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ALTENER – new and renewable energy sources for centralized and decentralised production of electricity and heat and their integration into the local environment and energy systems, including the preparation of legislative measures and their application. NATIONAL PROGRAMMES/INITIATIVES Forestry Commission The Forestry Commission has produced a RDPE discussion paper to inform the Regional Implementation Plans of what they feel are the main woodlands and forestry priorities. On this basis, the GM Implementation Plan will consequently contribute to the Forestry Commission proposed priorities, and in particular it will in part support the following: Axis 1 ⋅
Provision of advice to those who own or manage woodland which has unfulfilled potential for provision of public services or renewable products.
Improving the skills of those employed within the forestry sector and wood supply chain, focusing on those skills which will enable them to improve competitiveness.
Axis 3 ⋅
Stimulating entrepreneurship and micro-business start-ups associated with woodland.
Improving the conditions, accessibility and interpretation of natural and cultural features of woodlands which are associated with enterprises and employment
Priority activities: wood energy, local products, environmental tourism and traditional skills
Natural England Following the re-structuring of Natural England from its constituent bodies in October 2006, there will be consolidation of its priorities for the Region, both generically and under Axis 2. It is anticipated that this will support and inform delivery within the sub-regions. The SRP would expect that both the Forestry Commission and Natural England would have regard to the priorities of the Greater Manchester Sub-Region Action Plan within their considerations for activities under Axis 2. REGIONAL LINKS South Pennines Currently the North West Development Agency and Yorkshire Forward (the two Regional Development Agencies) are discussing, with relevant bodies on either side of the Pennines and the Countryside Agency, the potential for joined up working covering the South Pennine area that falls between the Dales and Peak National Parks. The Southern Pennine geographical coverage includes part of the Greater Manchester boroughs of Bolton, Bury, Rochdale and Oldham.
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Pennine Prospects Pennine Prospects is the rural regeneration company for the South Pennines. It is a non-profit company with membership from local authorities, government agencies and the private and voluntary sectors. The company aims to build on a history of positive cooperation in the South Pennines, to strengthen the delivery and promotion of landscape, regeneration, access and heritage projects. Pennine Prospects actions aim to: .
Raise the profile of the South Pennines regionally, nationally and internationally.
Support the conservation, regeneration and enjoyment of its rich heritage.
Provide real and lasting benefits for the local economy and communities.
An open dialogue will be maintained.
SUB-REGIONAL INITIATIVES Community Forest Red Rose Forest is Greater Manchester Community Forest, covering 292 square miles of Bolton, Bury, Manchester, Salford, Trafford and Wigan. It is a joint imitative of these 6 local authorities, the Countryside Commission and the Forestry Commission. Pennine Edge Forest is the Community Forest initiative on the eastern edge of Greater Manchester covering the other four districts - Rochdale, Oldham, Stockport and Tameside. It is a partnership of the four local authorities, Groundwork Trusts, BTCV, United Utilities, Forestry Commission and North West Development Agency. The Community Forest aims to realise social, economic and environmental improvement, establishing greener, more attractive and accessible environment in which to live and work. Greater Manchester Centre for Voluntary Organisations â€“ Rural Resource Unit The Greater Manchester Rural Resource Unit (RRU) is a new initiative funded through DEFRA to address the lack of coordinated knowledge about exactly who and what is rural about Greater Manchester. Their main aim is to work with local networks to identify issues affecting rural communities such as access to transport, services etc, and then draw this information into a Greater Manchester Rural Plan to highlight needs and make recommendations as to future resource allocations and strategic direction.
6.3 Communication The SRP believes that Marketing/communication of the Programme should be perceived at two different levels: â‹…
Marketing of the Programme as a whole, which should be co-ordinated and managed by the preferred single delivery vehicle with the collaboration of the NWDA and the Working Group.
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Marketing of individual activities, which should be managed by organisations delivering projects. This should also be done under the supervision of the delivery vehicle to ensure that the marketing material follows the NWDA and EU requirements. Projects will be required to include some provision for publicity and promotion in their budgets.
The main objective of the Marketing/Communication Strategy of the programme will be to: ⋅
Inform beneficiaries of the programme and the support available.
Ensure that there is clarity about the rule eligibility.
Inform of the EU support (contribution and role).
6.4 Gender Equality and Non-discrimination It will be requisite of the RDPE in GM that applicants/deliverers will develop systems and procedures to ensure that everyone is treated equally and that no one is discriminated against on the grounds of disability, gender, ethic origins, age, etc. In order to address and overcome any possible inequality, Measures and Procedures will be established and integrated into the programme everyday work. These measures will cover all aspects of the programme: ⋅
Marketing and Communication.
Tendering and Selection Process.
Consultation with partners, projects and beneficiaries.
Projects will also be challenged to address barriers that adversely affect the recruitment of women or beneficiaries from certain target groups (disabilities, ethic minorities, etc) Projects will be required to inform how they will overcome any inequality on the following aspects: ⋅
Access to services and information
Recruitment of beneficiaries
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Appendix 1 â€“ Greater Manchester Rural Eligible Areas Greater Manchester Rural Areas are included within the following wards:
Bolton Bradshaw Horwich and Blackrod Horwich North East Hulton Kearsley Westhoughton North and Chew Moor Westhoughton South
Bury East Heywood Holyrood North Manor Radcliffe North Radcliffe West Ramsbottom Tottington
Manchester Woodhouse Park
Oldham Alexandra Failsworth East Saddleworth North Saddleworth South Saddleworth West and Lees
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Rochdale Castleton Healey Ward Hopwood Hall Littleborough Lakeside Milnrow and Newhey Norden North Middleton Spotland and Falinge West Middleton
Salford Cadishead Pendlebury Walkden North
Stockport Marple North Marple South
Tameside Ashton Hurst Hyde Godley Hyde Werneth Longdendale Mossley
Wigan Abram Aspull New Springs Whelley GM RIP Final Draft
Astley Mosley Common Golborne and Lowton West Leigh East Leigh South Leigh West Lowton East Pemberton Shevington with Lower Ground
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Appendix 2 - List of contributors to the preparation of the Greater Manchester Rural Implementation Plan AGMA Local Authorities Chamberlink Forestry Commission GMCVO Groundwork Marketing Manchester North West Farm Tourism Initiative National Farmers Union Pennine Edge Forest Red Rose Forest Pennine Prospects
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Appendix 3 â€“ Glossary AGMA
Association of Greater Manchester Authorities
European Regional Development Fund
European Social Fund
Greater Manchester Centre for Voluntary Organisations
Government Office for the North West
North West Development Agency
North Wet Regional Assembly
Regional Development Agency
Rural Development Programme for England
Regional Economic Strategy
Sub Region Partnership
Unitary Development Plan
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Appendix 4 â€“ Outline Brief for Baseline Study
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