Agenda and draft minutes

Remote Meeting, Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership Board
Wednesday, 28th April, 2021 2.00 pm

Venue: Due to Covid-19, this meeting will be held remotely and will be livestreamed here: (copy and paste the link in your browser)

No. Item


Chair's Comments


The Board welcomed James Young, Governance Services, who shall be administering future meetings of the Board. The Board thanked Ruth Chaplin for her support and guidance during her time administering meetings of the Board.


The Chair advised that the newly elected Mayor will attend future meetings.



Apologies for Absence


Apologies for absence were received from Kate Hainsworth, Simon Pringle, Councillors Hinchcliffe, Jeffery, Lewis and Pandor and guests Peter Mucklow and Councillors Aspden and Cooper.


Declarations of Interest

In accordance with the requirements of the LEP Board Members’ Code of Conduct, members have an obligation to review their register of interests before each meeting and to declare any interests.


If an interest has not been entered onto the LEP’s register, then members must disclose the interest at any meeting at which they are present and where they have a disclosable interest in any matter being considered and where the matter is not a sensitive interest.


In accordance with the requirements of the LEP Board Members’ Code of Conduct, Members were reminded of their obligations to review their individual Register of Interests before each LEP Board meeting and declare any interests.


Exclusion of the Press and Public


There were no items on the agenda requiring the exclusion of the press and public.


Minutes of the meeting held on 24 February 2021 pdf icon PDF 180 KB


Resolved:  That the minutes of the meeting held on the 24 February 2021 be approved.


Economic Reporting pdf icon PDF 134 KB

(Led by: Alan Reiss, Author: James Hopton)

Additional documents:


The Board considered a report of the Director of Strategy, Communications and Policing which provided an update on the latest economic and business intelligence and activity and intelligence around understanding the impact of COVID-19 and EU Exit.


Members discussed the latest data and a copy of the Leeds City Region COVID-19 Insights Report was attached at Appendix 1.


It was highlighted that, with falling furlough use, the number of people claiming out of work benefits in West Yorkshire had risen 5% in February in line with a national increase. The current West Yorkshire claimant count of 110,050 is 93% higher than in March 2020.


Members noted the ONS survey data which showed some improvement in businesses reporting increasing turnover – particularly in West Yorkshire. Further information regarding the 


It was highlighted that whilst some businesses were cautiously optimistic about the future, there is significant concern regarding the end of business rates relief. Following discussion, further information on the effect of the economic downturn on freelancers in the creative and cultural sector would be circulated to Members.




(i)             That the latest intelligence around the economic impacts of COVID-19and EU Exit be noted.


(ii)            That further information regarding the effect of the impact on freelancers in the creative and cultural sector be circulated to Members.


COVID-19 pdf icon PDF 323 KB

(Led by: Brian Archer, Author: Ian Smyth)


The Board considered a report of the Director of Economic Services which provided an update on developments around the COVID-19 crisis, including the delivery of products and services in response.

Members noted that since the last meeting of the LEP Board in February the local authority areas of West Yorkshire had moved into the second step of the UK Government’s roadmap out of lockdown enabling retail establishments to reopen and the economy to open.  It was noted that the furlough scheme had been extended until 30 September 2021.

It was reported that access to finance is still an issue for many businesses and that the end of grant and business rates support for businesses was a concern for them. Wider economic issues such as rising energy prices are also forecast to place an increased burden on businesses’ finances. However, Members were advised that the recent launch of the UK Government debt dated 2051 bond was oversubscribed which did indicate confidence in the UK economy.

Resolved: That the progress on delivering the response to the crisis be noted.


LEP Capital Programme (Investment Committee) pdf icon PDF 429 KB

(Led by: Melanie Corcoran)

Additional documents:


The Board considered a report of the Director of Delivery on the LEP Capital Programme (Investment Committee) and the progress made implementing the LEP capital programme for 2020/21.


Members noted the updates on capital expenditure in 2021/21 (quarter 3 actuals and quarter 4 forecast) including the forecast spend of each of the LEP programmes and a brief summary of the Annual Performance Review with the Cities and Local Growth Unit (CLoG).  The Board endorsed the Growth Deal Data Capture return for quarter 3 2020/21 which was attached at Appendix 3 to the submitted report.  This had been submitted to CLoG in accordance with their deadline of 19 February 2021.  The deadline for the quarter 4 return is 28 May 2021 and this will be brought to the next meeting. 


It was noted that a report on the use of the returned capital funds from the Growing Places Fund would be brought to a future meeting, noting that the LEP had endorsed the use of much of this funding for new business loan fund.


The Board passed on their thanks to all officers and teams involved in the delivery of the projects and programmes highlighted in the report.




(i)             That the report be noted.


(ii)            That the Data Capture return for quarter 3, attached at Appendix 3 to          the submitted report, be endorsed.


Governance Arrangements pdf icon PDF 240 KB

(Led by: Angela Taylor, Author: Caroline Allen)

Additional documents:


The Board considered a report of the Director, Corporate Services on governance arrangements which:


·       Advised the LEP Board of changes to Leeds City Council’s LEP Board member and substitute member.

·       Considered a recommendation to extend both the Board and advisory group term of office of the LEP Board Member, Joanna Robinson.

·       Considered a recommendation to appoint the LEP Board member Mandy Ridyard to the Business Innovation and Growth Panel (or its successor) and to recommend such appointment to the Combined Authority.

·       Provided LEP Board members with the outcome and recommendations of the review of the current LEP Chair’s final year of tenure and proposals for the recruitment of a new Chair.

·       Advised the LEP Board of proposals for changes to be made to the Combined Authority’s decision-making arrangements to better reflect the changed role and responsibilities of the Authority following the appointment of a Mayor for West Yorkshire, due to be considered by the Combined Authority at its meeting on 22 April.


Leeds City Council Appointments


It was reported that Councillor James Lewis had replaced Baroness Judith Blake as Leeds City Council’s representative on the LEP Board and Councillor Debra Coupar would replace Councillor James Lewis as the substitute LEP Board member.


Board Membership


It was agreed that Joanna Robinson’s term of office as a LEP Board member and Chair of the advisory Business Communications Group be extended until the LEP Board annual meeting in June 2021.


Advisory Panel Membership


It was reported that following a recent private sector member resignation from the Business Innovation & Growth Panel, expressions of interest had been sought from existing private sector members.  In this respect, it was agreed that the LEP Board recommends to the Combined Authority the appointment of Mandy Ridyard to the Business Innovation & Growth Panel.


LEP Chair Review


Roger Marsh took no part in the consideration of this item. 


The Board considered the full report of the LEP Chair review which was attached at Appendix 1 to the submitted report. It was agreed that the Chair remains in post for the remainder of the agreed tenure.  It was noted that whilst there are challenges ahead, there were also opportunities for the LEP to build a more partnership-based approach.  Considering the findings of the LEP Chair Review, it was agreed that the LEP takes a proactive role working with private sector members to engage with the Government’s review of LEPs.  It was agreed that, only after the outcome of the LEP review, work should begin in partnership with local authorities, LEP Board members and wider stakeholders on the scope and role profile for a new LEP Chair, and enhanced engagement from private sector members. 



The Chair thanked the Board for their continued support.


MCA Committee Arrangements


The Board discussed the proposed changes for the Authority’s formal decision-making arrangements which had been agreed by Combined Authority at their meeting held on 22 April 2021. The changes would take effect from the Authority’s annual meeting on 24 June 2021 and the key points were  ...  view the full minutes text for item 104.


Any Other Business


Andrew Wright, Chair of the Business Innovation & Growth Panel, advised the Board that c.£1.5 million funding had been secured for the Made Smarter agenda for the Greater Yorkshire area. South Yorkshire will be the responsible body and West Yorkshire will take a lead role in delivering the work.


Minutes of the Meeting of the Combined Authority held on 9 March 2021 pdf icon PDF 309 KB


Resolved:  That the minutes of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority held on 9 March 2021 be noted.


Date of Next Meeting

The next meeting will be held on 9 June 2021


The date of the next meeting with be held on 9 June 2021.