Stalled Sites Fund - Guidance

Background

The Stalled Site Fund (previously called CaSS), is an East Sussex County Council one-off capital fund designed to:

  • help finance feasibility studies and business case development to support schemes that are not viable without public support to enable them to apply for public funding, for example, the Local Growth Fund
  • Unlock stalled employment and housing sites [1] that have site specific reasons for remaining undeveloped with loan or equity share finance.

[1] Employment and housing sites in the county means those which are allocated as such in the local plans. Please contact your local planning department to check.


Eligibility

  • Public and private sector organisations. Partnerships will be considered.
  • The applicant must own the site or be applying on behalf of or in partnership with the owner.
  • Applicants can only apply for one of the stages of the project at a time
    1. Feasibility and Business Case
    2. Site Pre-Development Work.

Criteria for feasibility and business case funding

  • Employment or housing scheme in East Sussex seeking to develop a bid for future funding streams of a significant size to contribute towards local plan targets.
  • 50% match funding - in exceptional circumstances lower match contributions will be considered.
  • Housing sites with a minimum of 15 units.
  • Site stalled for 12 months minimum.
  • Project needs funding for feasibility and site investigation or business case development.

Criteria for site pre-development funding

  • Employment or housing sites identified in the Local Plans only (excluding retail, hotel and catering) that is in the Employment Land Review or the Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment (SHLAA).
  • Activity funded: Exceptional site specific pre-development work without which the site would remain undeveloped.
  • Site stalled for 12 months minimum.
  • Normally the site must be a minimum half a hectare.
  • 50% match funding of the unlocking cost up to a maximum of £100k.
  • Minimum size for housing site is 15 units (excluding social housing) with a guide build cost of £140k or less per unit.

Qualifying expenditures

1. Feasibility study and business case

This may be the first action required for a scheme and could highlight likely viability issues of the proposed development, outline job and home creation figures and potential levels of additional funding required for success of the project.

Site investigation works are also eligible for part funding.

Funding per project

  • max funding: 25K
  • type of funding: grant or loan
  • minimum match: 50% match
  • note: In exceptional circumstances a higher % will be considered

2. Site pre-development work

  • This covers a range of site-specific work including flood defences, environmental and locational issues, for example, dereliction, access, low value.  This may follow heading "1" above where it is identified it is required to gain viability. It may also follow on from an existing feasibility report or be taken forward without. This type of funding is more expensive than "1" and it is dependent on the type of site infrastructure intervention required. It will, however, be undertaken at a stage where there is less risk and therefore more opportunity to recoup the initial outlay, perhaps with interest.
  • Stalled employment sites will be assessed on the potential level of job creation.

Funding per project

  • maximum funding: 100k
  • type of funding: loan or equity share
  • minimum match: 50%

How to apply

To get an application form contact the Economic Intervention Fund


Delivery process

  • The fund is administered by the East Sussex County Council Business Funding Team.
  • Applications for feasibility studies and businesses cases are made on a single stage application form and supporting documentation.
  • Applications for site development work is a 2-stage process with an Expression of Interest (EOI) stage followed by detailed application stage for those whose EOIs are approved. Application forms are obtained from the Economic Intervention Fund.
  • Applications will be appraised by the Business Funding Team who appraise the application with advice from relevant departments and other authorities based on:
    1) value for money
    2) the difficulty of the issue
    3) viability and deliverability
    4) by what percentage the release of the sites will contribute towards Local Plan targets.
  • Appraisals are considered by a panel of East Sussex senior officers who make a recommendation to the Director of Communities, Economy and Transport for decision.
  • Successful applicants will be sent an offer letter detailing the conditions of funding for the applicant to accept prior to entering into a funding contract.

Terms of loan funding

  • The maximum loan period is up to 5 years. In exceptional circumstances repayment can be deferred for the entire period so that it is repaid in a lump sum once the site is developed or at the 5-year anniversary, whichever is the sooner. Any interest will accrue during the deferred period.