Skip to main content

September 2020 HGB Meeting – Agenda Item 3

Published: 1 October 2020

Hertfordshire Growth Board (HGB) – Growth Board Programmes Update
Report Author: Patsy Dell, Hertfordshire Growth Board (Tel: 07949 887794)

1. Purpose of report

This report provides a short update on the overall progress of the key Growth Board programmes. More detailed updates also appear in other reports on this agenda as follows:

Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) Workstream – item 4 on this agenda;

2. Overall Growth Board Work Programme Update

By way of recap, the March HGB meeting agreed priority work for the next six – nine months (at that time the period of focus for negotiations with HM Government) to cover and including:

  • Meeting the commitments set out in the letter to the Secretary of State from January 2020 on behalf of all Leaders;
  • Responding to the invitation from MHCLG to work with them to develop a proposition to secure HM Government support (including our level of ambition, what can be achieved in the next five years (delivery and devolution new models);
  • An initial portfolio of prioritised corridor delivery projects known as ‘Wave 1’ including:
    • Where detailed Business Cases for infrastructure interventions could be developed in time for Spending Review (SR) 2020 (i.e. before summer recess);
    • Progress that can be made over the next 0 – 5, 6 – 10 years development and delivery window;
    • Projects which will contribute to accelerated outcomes and recovery: employment sites, jobs and housing delivery (with increased affordable housing availability).

Feedback from MHCLG at the August HGB meeting was positive and is dealt with in item 4 on this agenda. No change to the focus of HGB work at the corridor level is required at the present time.

3. Updates on Corridor Growth Delivery Programmes and workstreams

Both Growth Corridors have established Governance arrangement and are overseeing the development of the Wave 1 projects into fully fledged delivery programmes, working to a set of key deliverables and milestones linked to the timetabling agreed with MHCLG. 

Project Management Office (PMO) supporting arrangements are now establishing a common suite of planning and reporting documents for use at the programme board and project team level. These are being tested and trialled within both East – West corridor boards to ensure that they provide a consistent, streamlined and fit for purpose level of accountability and milestone reporting from local project management levels through the corridor programme boards and into HGB.

Appendix 1 has an update from each of the corridor projects showing recent milestones and current status.

4. Update on Place Narrative, Branding and Communications workstream

The last Growth Board received a presentation on the progress with implementing the new HGB branding and visual identity work as well as the new micro-site. The HGB Micro site was launched in  July and is now live at . 

Other communications activity in August included the second in  a series of three webinars on the work of the Growth Board and its partners, hosted by the Voice of Authority . The focus this time was on economic recovery. Again, we saw good interest and attendance and positive feedback on the work of the Growth Board.

5. Update on Growth Board Accelerated Housing Delivery Programme

The team is now working directly with the virtual MHCLG/Homes England team that are reviewing the Hertfordshire data as part of the Growth Deal discussions. This is covered more fully in the agenda report at item 4.

6. Next Steps

Priorities for the coming month are to move forward on the MHCLG engagement and progressing our case for a Growth and Housing Deal, the establishment of the Joint Committee and the corridor project work. Over the rest of the summer/early autumn it is expected that there will be further feedback from MHCLG and a process of check and challenge back to Hertfordshire on the details that are included within our deal proposals. 

Communicating this progress and next steps beyond the Growth Board will also be important. Briefing MP’s, key stakeholders, and keeping other members and staff involved on the wider work in touch with what is happening will be progressed. 

7. Recommendation

That Leaders note the overall progress across the Growth Board programme and individual workstreams since the last meeting.