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South coast’s £200million cash boost praised by University

PLANS to stimulate the south coast economy by creating thousands of new jobs have been praised by the University of Chichester Vice-Chancellor following his reappointment to the region’s Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP).

Professor Clive Behagg commended the new £202million deal signed between central government and Coast to Capital earlier this month, which will also build 4,600 new houses and provide 190,000 metres of office space. The LEP, which was set up in 2011, encourages economic growth across East and West Sussex, Brighton and Hove, as well as parts of Surrey and Croydon, and is led by business owners and local authorities with support from Universities and Colleges and council leaders from all four areas.

Professor Behagg, who was re-elected as the group’s representative of Higher Education last week, after serving an initial two-year term, said: “This new deal will provide the basis for real economic growth in this region. The LEP has led the development of economic regeneration during the last few years and will now oversee the start of a six-year investment programme in jobs, infrastructure and transport to stimulate growth.”

As part of his re-election to the Coast to Capital board, Professor Behagg will act as a representative of all four universities situated within the region – including Chichester, Brighton, Sussex, as well as the University of the Creative Arts in Farnham. Throughout the two-year role, he will ensure that the academic institutions make a significant contribution to regional regeneration by providing well qualified graduates and educational expertise.

Professor Behagg added: “The fact that all four universities are represented on the Coast to Capital board shows that we are an integral part of economic growth across the south of England. Local regeneration is high on our agenda and I believe that, through the LEP, this can translate into a collaborative contribution to regional growth. There is a very strong partnership between our universities, and it is a great pleasure to have been accepted to serve for a further two years.”

For more on the Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership, including details of the new £202million government deal, visit www.coast2capital.org.uk. Alternatively to find out more about Professor Clive Behagg, including his reappointment to the board, go to www.chi.ac.uk/about-us.