Development Loan Fund
A £10m Development Loan Fund has been set up by Wyre Forest District Council in collaboration with fund manager Finance Birmingham, to help fuel new development in the area.
Developers and business owners with a project that needs support are encouraged to put in an application to this fund which has been created to boost investment and regeneration in Wyre Forest. Ambitious new schemes which support the council’s priority for regeneration and economic growth are the target projects for the fund.
The intention is to unlock development sites and support economic growth. It is also designed to unlock capital projects that have the potential for job creation and/or housing and can quickly deliver tangible economic outcomes through providing additional capital investment.
Individual funding approvals are invited of between £500,000 and £5,000,000. Applications below £500,000 will only be considered in exceptional circumstances. Projects above this financial range may be considered but must deliver exceptional outputs and/or provide exceptional value for money.
How to Apply
Applications will be assessed in terms of the following:
- Deliverability and risks associated with the project
- Job creation/housing supply benefits and/or other benefits to the Wyre Forest area
- Sustainability and prospects for growth
- Financial implications (e.g. leverage, distributed risk, returns to the Council)
Priority will be given to projects that have planning permission and other funding in place and to those that fit well with one or more of the Council’s corporate priorities.
Revenue projects are not eligible for the Loan Fund. Only capital projects may be submitted (usual fees/project management costs which are part of a larger capital project are eligible).
Deliverability is of paramount importance. The Development Loan Fund funding can be used flexibly to help deliver critical infrastructure, de-risk projects and tackle site constraints to unblock stalled schemes of significant economic benefit.
There is no restriction on the type of capital project that may be submitted or the way in which the Development Loan Fund will be applied. However, we have a responsibility to manage public funding effectively and all projects must demonstrate sustainability and economic benefit to the Wyre Forest area and its residents.
The Development Loan Fund is funded by external borrowing and projects will be expected to repay their funding so this debt can also be repaid. Early repayment will be prioritised and taken into account alongside value for money and economic impact. A repayment period of no more than 5 – 7 years is preferred although loan terms of up to a maximum of 15 years may also be considered.
All applications will be assessed against the following criteria:
- Funds must be used for the acquisition or enhancement of an identifiable asset with a life of more than one year – and ‘ready to go’
- Can include the costs (excluding interest) of assets acquired under a finance lease
- Cannot be used to fund moveable assets where there is an expectation of immediate re-sale
- They must be located in, and significantly contribute to, the economy of the Wyre Forest
- Development projects should have outline planning consent and/or a reasonable expectation that full planning consent will be granted within six months
- We particularly welcome development projects that create skilled employment, especially in one of Wyre Forest’s key sectors such as advanced manufacturing or engineering.
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