South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SELEP)

From 1 April 2024 the activities that have been undertaken by the South East LEP to support local growth will be undertaken by local authorities.

Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) were introduced across England in 2011 as partnerships between councils, businesses and other stakeholders, focussed on driving productivity and job creation, and as a more locally-driven replacement for the nine regional development agencies abolished in 2010. East Sussex formed part of the South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SELEP), which also included Essex, Kent, Medway, Southend and Thurrock.

In March 2023, as part of its overall levelling-up and devolution agenda, the government announced that it was minded to discontinue funding LEPs from April 2024 onwards, a position that they formally confirmed in August 2023. In light of this, SELEP took the decision to close operations, with LEP functions and responsibilities transitioning to Upper Tier Local Authorities (UTLAs) from April 2024.

East Sussex County Council has therefore taken on relevant local SELEP responsibilities from 1 April 2024. These primarily include:

  • Business representation: Team East Sussex (TES) continues to operate beyond the life of SELEP in an advisory capacity, as the business-led strategic economic growth board for the county, providing the voice of business in steering our county’s economic growth agenda.
  • Strategic economic planning: The new East Sussex Economic Prosperity Strategy is currently being jointly developed by the County Council and TES. This strategy will put the Council in a strong position to make the case for future access to government programmes.
  • Delivery of government programmes: The County Council will take on the role of local ‘accountable body’ to oversee the future management and monitoring of potential new government funding programmes, as well as any legacy SELEP capital programmes for our area. The Council will also assume local accountable body status for the Growth Hub (central point of contact for business support and information).

The SELEP website will remain a source of historical information for capital programme schemes, meetings and minutes, updated up to 31 March 2024.

Team East Sussex (TES)

Team East Sussex (TES) is the strategic advisory economic growth board for East Sussex, with a primary aim to drive forward economic growth and prosperity in the county.

TES is an independent, business-led, private/public body, with representation from business members and business representative bodies (including the FSB and Chambers of Commerce), the voluntary and community sector, further education, higher education and the local authority leaders of all of the county, borough and district councils across East Sussex. TES is supported by County Council officers in a secretariat capacity.

See more about Team East Sussex.

Skills East Sussex (SES)

Skills East Sussex (SES) is the county’s strategic body for employment and skills. The group aims to drive an improvement in local employment and skills. This in turn increases economic prosperity in East Sussex. It agrees and sets priorities based on a firm evidence base. These priorities provide direction for the county’s approach to employment and skills.

See more about Skills East Sussex.

Developers East Sussex (DES)

Developers East Sussex (DES) is a subgroup of Team East Sussex. The group takes an active role in the delivery of quality sustainable development in East Sussex. DES aims to represent all developers in East Sussex, including:

  • Commercial and residential companies
  • Private companies
  • Housing associations
  • Public bodies and owners
  • Planners
  • Construction companies.

DES is committed to making a difference to East Sussex’s growth agenda to bring about:

  • deliverable, high quality and sustainable development
  • a functional property market
  • growth in jobs and housing.

See more about Developers East Sussex.

Enterprise Adviser Network (EAN)

The EAN engages local businesses from a range of sectors to partner with local schools and colleges. Providing advice and support, EAN helps to shape careers and skills education.

See more about the Enterprise Adviser Network.

Culture East Sussex (CES)

Culture East Sussex (CES) is a network of cultural organisations and individuals that is hosted by East Sussex County Council. It is part of Team East Sussex (TES), a federated board of the South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SELEP).

See more about Culture East Sussex (CES).