Issue - meetings

Mersey Dee Alliance

Meeting: 11/06/2014 - Environment Overview & Scrutiny Committee - Expired 13/07/20 (Item 5)

5 Mersey Dee Alliance pdf icon PDF 34 KB

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            (a)       That the report be noted; and


(b)       That an update report be submitted to the Committee in six months time.



The Chief Officer (Community and Enterprise) and Chief Regeneration Officer introduced a report to advise Members of progress regarding the work of Mersey Dee Alliance (MDA). 


            The Chief Regeneration Officer detailed the background to the report and explained that the MDA was made up of nine partnerships which included Flintshire County Council, Welsh Government (WG) and Glyndwr University.  He added that the area of North East Wales and North West Cheshire was unique in the UK as a major economic area divided by a national boundary.  The MDA had been formed in recognition of the shared interests of both sides of the national border and to develop a joint approach to key economic matters particularly about market planning, major transport infrastructure and lobbying on issues of shared concern. 


            The report provided information on the work which had been carried out which included the Dee Region Report by Dr. Elizabeth Haywood in 2013.  The MDA Board had submitted a case to WG for City Region Status for the MDA and even though the bid had not been accepted, WG had accepted that the MDA was an area that needed further consideration. 


            Work on a Growth and Investment Prospectus had also been undertaken to inform, implement and secure appropriate recognition for MDA priorities in the strategic economic plans and European Structural funds bids being developed by the two Local Enterprise Partnerships and the North Wales Economic Ambition Board.  This would focus on the growth potential of the M56/A55 Innovation Corridor, raising the profile of the MDA among key stakeholders and key messages that would form the basis of an inward investment marketing proposition for the MDA area. 


            In welcoming the report, Councillor Nancy Matthews thanked officers for their work but said that she could not see any movement on the attitude of WG and she felt that they did not appreciate the unique position of the area and its geographical training corridor.  She said that discussions had been undertaken in 2008 on the Halton Spur and the electrification of the railway line from Bidston to Wrexham, both of which she felt could make a significant difference to the area.  Councillor Paul Shotton spoke of the economy of the area that was greater than Cardiff or Swansea and expressed his disappointment at the bid for City Region Status not being accepted.  In response to a question from Councillor Shotton on the electrification of the Bidston line, the Chief Officer (Community and Enterprise) said that the issue had been discussed at a recent meeting of the MDA Strategy Group and work was still ongoing to decide what priorities should be taken up with WG.  The Cabinet Member for Economic Development said that he would endeavour to make WG aware of the MDA.  Councillor Colin Legg said that there were several instances in Europe where similar joint approaches were taken which worked well and he felt that the raising the profile of the MDA was important. 


            Councillor Veronica Gay referred  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5