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Skills and Business Support for Rural Businesses Post Brexit, Plumpton College, Lewes


Approval Status


Fully Approved

Delivery Status


LGF Project Delivered

Project Completion Date


Spring 2023

Plumpton College is the regional specialist land-based training and education centre, working with approximately 2,000 businesses and educating around 3,500 students annually. The aim of the Project is assist in the provision of the infrastructure and training required to secure better AgriFood business productivity and efficiency post-Brexit.  Achieving this aim is reliant on the following:

  • A better supply of more highly trained, educated and entrepreneurial new entrants;
  • Continual updating of the existing workforce;
  • Business leaders adopting improved business techniques to exploit market opportunities, non-traditional diversification, estate utilisation and available technologies, e.g. the potential offered from automation;
  • Increasing technical skills to:
    • fill the current national shortage of 650,000 technical vacancies (land-based), of which 150,000 are in the South East;
    • meet skills demand through new AgriFood opportunities which are not currently delivered elsewhere in the South East;
  • Plumpton College’s enhanced presence to prepare businesses for Brexit and the post-Brexit period, including recruitment of individuals with appropriate levels of skill.

The LGF funding will be used to assist in delivering the first phase of an ambitious strategic project.  Specifically the Project will deliver:

  • Construction of a 2 storey centre of excellence in AgriFood knowledge transfer, business improvement and skills training;
  • Improved pedestrian and road user access to the new facilities;
  • Redevelopment of the pig production and beef and sheep handling facilities, including automated milking stations;
  • Development of a village green through landscaping opportunities.
Award of additional LGF funding

The LGF COVID-19 response fund was established to support those existing LGF projects which were experiencing a funding gap due to cost increases or loss of local funding sources as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. A new LGF project pipeline, consisting of existing LGF projects, was agreed by the Strategic Board in December 2020 and will be used as the basis for awarding all currently unallocated LGF funding.

This project was included on the new LGF project pipeline and the award of an additional £1.495m LGF was approved by Accountability Board on 12th February 2021.

Capital Programme delivery update

Take a look at our update on the delivery of the Local Growth Fund (LGF) and Growing Places Fund (GPF) capital programmes.

SELEP Capital Investment Programme

£579m of investment to East Sussex, Essex, Kent, Medway, Southend and Thurrock

In total the SELEP Growth Deal with Government has brought £579m of investment to East Sussex, Essex, Kent, Medway, Southend and Thurrock. Over the lifetime of the Growth Deal (2015-2021) we aim to deliver 78,000 jobs and 29,000 homes across the SELEP area, with the Deal set to attract a further £960m of investment into the South East over the six year period.

Find out more here
Funding value: £4,413,000
Total Project cost: £9,572,185
Return to Capital Investment