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The Marches LEP: Energy Strategy – Stakeholder engagement

Lead organisations

SWM and Encraft


BEIS has provided all 38 LEPs in England with funding to develop an energy strategy for their area. The Marches includes Herefordshire, Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin. The area is home to 29,800 businesses and contributes over £12.3 billion to the national economy. The Marches Local Economic LEP has recognised that future energy provision is a key part of unlocking future growth potential. The current energy infrastructure is already at capacity in many areas and this presents both a threat to future business and housing development but also an opportunity to invest in innovation that can overcome these challenges providing a unique selling point for those in the energy supply chain to invest in the area. The overall aim of the study was to develop the strategic energy evidence base for the Marches LEP bringing together work from across the area and consolidating it into one document that also identifies any relevant gaps necessary to inform energy strategy development.

Stakeholder engagement

Working with Encraft, SWM provided support in engaging with local stakeholders through delivery of workshops which gave them the platform to contribute to the strategy by feeding in their ideas and providing their vision for a strategy that would become reality. The aims of the workshop were to feed into:
  • Identification of the energy challenges, opportunities and resultant priorities
  • Development of an LEP-wide action plan
  • Identification of funding options to deliver low carbon energy projects

Results and achievements

  • SWM delivered a workshop in Telford for over 20 delegates from businesses, local authorities, utilities companies, universities and the third sector.
  • SWM drew on our experience of best practice in energy management from other LEP areas to highlight ways of successfully delivering energy projects in the Marches area.
  • The LEP have been provided with an evidence base report, draft energy strategy and action plan that is tailored to their local needs.
  • Short, medium and long term priorities have been established along with action steps required to deliver the strategy.
Read the draft Marches Energy Strategy

Download the full case study

Lead Organisation

Sustainability West Midlands Project Manager: Simon Slater (formerly Chief Executive)


Sustainable development is a complex agenda, how can it be interpreted and practically applied by regional, public sector organizations? SWM set out to answer this question in the context of Advantage West Midlands (AWM). The aim of this was to help build the understanding, confidence, and capacity of regional organizations to practically integrate sustainable development into their strategic and operational processes. The aim of this work was to take national good practice, in the form of the Sustainable Development Action Plans (SDAP) required to be produced and reported on annually by Government Departments to the Sustainable Development Commission, and adapt for regional public bodies such as AWM.

Results and achievements

  • AWM moved from the bottom to the top of the league table of corporate sustainability performance within the RDA network
  • The creation of a board champion for future generations to chair the new sustainability sub-committee of the board to measure the progress of the SDAP
  • Creation of small sustainability team of staff and co-located staff within AWM to drive ‘mainstreaming’
  • Using the opportunity to refresh the economic strategy to produce the UK’s first low carbon regional economic strategy
  • Internal environmental management system that led to operational savings from waste and energy efficiency measures
  • Sustainability criteria built into funding investments, business support, and land and property development. This included a new carbon reduction target and reporting measures
  • Developing a new sustainability standard for large sites, that was incorporated into Regional Planning Guidance
  • Tailored training and support for the board, staff and partners to help them deliver their role in the SDAP

Download the full case study

For further information on the project or to work with us in one of a variety of ways, please contact the SWM team at enquiries@swm.org.uk.

Download the energy strategy

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