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What does NEEB hope to achieve for North Essex? Innovation, Investment, Infrastructure and Expertise

The North Essex Economic Board (NEEB) is a dynamic partnership of local authorities focused on driving sustainable economic growth and development in the North Essex region. Made up of members Braintree, Colchester, Chelmsford, Harlow, Maldon, Tendring, Uttlesford, Epping Forest District Councils and Essex County Council, they are working together to empower businesses, support entrepreneurship, develop skills, and enhance residents’ quality of life. By leveraging resources and expertise, it aims to build resilient communities and create a region of opportunity for future generations.

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Having spent the last 12 months assessing local area data and establishing the key needs for the area, it has now released the NEEB Strategy, a plan forged to leverage North Essex’s core strengths and highlight the area for future investment and growth.

The findings of the data analysis exercise made clear that there were four themes (‘key strategic priorities’) that united all seven authorities, from which a coherent and compelling ‘North Essex Vision’ could be built. These are:

1 – Innovative Businesses and Skilled Residents
2 – A Green and High Growth Economy
3 – A Dynamic and Connected Region
4 – Prosperous and Inclusive Communities

What does this mean for the Business and Residents of North Essex?

1 – Innovative Businesses and Skilled Residents

With North Essex’s substantial SME community driving entrepreneurship and innovation; three highly successful Higher Education institutions leading cutting edge research in areas including computer and data science; and thriving Further Education institutions delivering the technical skills and qualifications that form the backbone of any resilient economy, NEEB wises to ensure that residents and businesses benefit from increased inward investment that helps to ensure continued personal and professional growth.


  • To support young entrepreneurs to access skills and funding to start their own businesses.
  • To share knowledge between educational institutions and businesses through Knowledge Transfer Partnerships to support innovation and growth.
  • Identifying skills gaps in the community and providing support and access to relevant courses helping them to upskill or gain employment.
  • Providing support and advice to businesses across the region, supporting them to grow and highlighting key sectors for development.


2 – A Green and High Growth Economy

A forward-looking economy that utilises the diversity of its resources in a sustainable way that furthers North Essex’s clean energy strengths, boosts growth, and promotes residents’ prosperity through net zero commitments.

Starting with renewable electricity capacity and generation, North Essex has the potential to build on its incumbent strengths in this space, positioning itself as a renewable energy exemplar. The regional renewable electricity strengths are driven by three main sources of energy – onshore wind, onshore wind and solar power.


  • Build upon infrastructure already in place that is supporting renewable electricity generation.
  • Boost North Essex’s Solar Power capacity.
  • EV charging infrastructure.
  • Drive forward green technology and techniques.

3 – A Dynamic and Connected Region

A well-connected and digitally-linked region that provides residents with quick and reliable access to key services, encourages inward investment, and makes the most of ties to regional and international neighbours.

With North Essex’s outward facing transport terminals forming important strategic trading links for the UK and best practice work delivered in the rollout of superfast broadband across the region, it is now imperative the region focuses on how it can drive infrastructure improvements. Specifically, the region should be focusing on how it can increase the region’s roads’ capacity; improve authority-to-authority public transport links; and boost ultrafast broadband availability. These improvements will further North Essex’s economic growth potential, through greater inward investment and businesses establishing themselves in the region.


  • Build on external facing transport terminals.
  • Build on the internal transport infrastructure.
  • Increase in active travel initiatives to ensure residents and businesses can quickly and efficiently move around North Essex.
  • Learn from Superfast Essex’s Broadband successes, to further ultrafast broadband progress.


4 – Prosperous and Inclusive Communities

A thriving and inclusive region where all residents and businesses have the opportunity to contribute and prosper, exemplifying the region as a great place to live, work and visit.

With North Essex’s successes in securing central government levelling up funding; its thriving third sector; and its distinct urban, rural and coastal characteristics, there is a real chance to advance pride in place and boost residents’ confidence and economic engagement within all North Essex authorities.


  • Build on central Government funding, secured as part of the levelling up agenda.
  • Working with partners to promote the success of Town Deal, Levelling Up and UK shared Prosperity funding to support promotion and supporting the case for continued central government and wider investor support to enhance communities within the region.
  • Scaling up of district specific programmes and initiatives to benefit all across the region.


Through key initiatives and collaborative thinking, NEEB strives to make North Essex a prosperous, thriving, and forward-thinking region, that supports its residents and businesses and attracts future investment for growth.

Find out more

Our strategy

To find out more about strategy, and NEEB’s plans for economic growth in the region