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ESIF Programme

The Combined Authority plays a leading role in the delivery of the EU Structural and Investment Funds Strategy (ESIF) 2014-2020 for Liverpool City Region.


Within the Liverpool City Region, the Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) was tasked by Government to develop the ESIF Strategy, working with the Combined Authority, local authorities, higher and further education, the private, environmental and voluntary sector as well as with Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG), Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA).

During 2013, the LEP organised 2 large EU stakeholder events, numerous workshops, and established an EU Advisory Group and EU Post 2013 Group, made up of a wide range of local partners, to develop and test ideas for our local ESIF. This document has been refreshed and the final version of our ESIF Strategy was submitted to Government in February 2016.

The main areas of focus for the ESIF are the 5 Portfolio areas – Blue / Green Economy, Business Economy, Innovation Economy, Inclusive Economy, Place and Connectivity which map onto the main Priority Axes of the England ERDF and ESF Operational Programmes. These are the overarching documents, guiding delivery of ESIF Programmes and defining eligible activities.

During 2015, an area based Sustainable Urban Development (SUD) Strategy was agreed from the city region’s ERDF allocation. This Programme targets cycling and walking, as well as new technology and alternative fuels to deliver sustainable transport across the city region.

Governance – LCR ESIF Committee

The LEP area ESI Funds Sub-Committees are sub-committees of the England Growth Programme Board (GPB), managed by MHCLG. They support the GPB’s role in considering overall Operational Programme performance by specifically looking at and advising on the local, on-the-ground implementation of the programme, via project calls and applications.

The Liverpool City Region ESIF Sub-Committee oversees the development and delivery of the EU Programme across our City Region. It is jointly chaired by the CA and the LEP. Membership is drawn from partners within the city region and is linked to the CA and LEP governance structures to ensure alignment between ESIF investments, city region strategies, priorities and investment funds.


All calls for projects are managed on a national basis by Government and are published on the website. Calls are open on a Priority Axes (PA) basis rather than the portfolio approach in the ESIF Strategy.

The CA drafts the local development needs section of all calls for projects so that they address the needs of the City Region’s businesses and individuals in line with LCR strategies.

The LCR ESIF Sub-Committee advises the CA, MHCLG and DWP on the local strategic fit of project applications, based on the formal joint assessment carried out by the CA and Government Departments.


The ESIF Programme is delivered through open calls or through procurement (ESF only). In the case of open calls, these will be advertised on the website. They include standard text and a local development needs section, which will specify LCR priorities.

Once an open call is live on the website, the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority based Technical Assistance Team will organise a workshop which will set out the priorities for the particular call and will provide assistance requested by any potential applicants.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, national calls from the proposed Reserve Funds, which were due to be published earlier this month, have been postponed and MHCLG has launched ERDF funds to facilitate recovery for SMEs in the Visitor Economy and the wider SME community. Please visit Liverpool Growth Hub on to obtain further details and find out how to apply.

Open applications received in response to previous calls will still be assessed. Please refer to the guidance on the website.

ERDF – European Regional Development Fund

The Managing Authority for ERDF, MHCLG, is working on responding to the many queries from delivery agents and partners who are concerned about claims and whether they will be able to deliver against the targets in the contracts they have in place. To alleviate as many concerns as possible, they have put together a Q & A ERDF Advice , which will answer most generic questions.

For any queries relating to ERDF please contact Angela Hanaghan by email on or telephone on 07388 719 062

ESF – European Social Fund

For any queries relating to ESF funding, please contact Paul Amann on
or 07715 602 713

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