Marches LEP

About the Marches Local Enterprise Partnership

The Marches is a dynamic business region where entrepreneurs flourish alongside global players.  The Marches Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) is working towards accelerating growth for the benefit of the whole business community and the people who live and work here too.

The Marches region, which includes Herefordshire, Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin, covers an area of 2,300 sq miles and has a growing population of 630,000.

It boasts the largest supply of serviced, ready-to-go land in the West Midlands and is home to 28,000 businesses.

Notable business names that have chosen the Marches include: BAE Defence Systems; GKN; Westons; Grainger & Worrall; Stadco; Caterpillar; Mϋller Dairy UK, Doncasters Aerospace, Denso, Capgemini, Ricoh, Cargill, Heineken, Grocontinental, McConnels, Kerry Ingredients, Special Metals, Kingspan and Makita.

The key priority sectors within the Marches LEP area are:

  • Advanced manufacturing and engineering which account for more than 14.1% of all employment across the Marches and which employs 36,700 people
  • Agri-food which in 2011 was worth more than £1.9 billion to the region, employing at least 9,000 people
  • Automotive which employs 3,400 people and benefits from the availability of quality sites; its proximity to the M54 which links to the rest of the national motorway network; and the nearby i54 site (home to Jaguar Land Rover’s new engine plant)
  • Security and defence which can claim at least 200 businesses in Herefordshire alone and across the region, at least 2,600 people are employed in this sector. The Marches also boasts the UK’s only defence and security enterprise zone (

The Marches is also home to a number of very notable academic and research assets: Harper Adams University’s Precision Farming Engineering Centre; the University of Wolverhampton campus and e-innovation centre at Priorslee; and the Polymer Research Centre in Telford.  Additionally, Shrewsbury recently welcomed it first students to University Centre Shrewsbury, further boosting the academic strength of the region.


The Marches LEP works with a number of partner organisations in Herefordshire, Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin.

These include the business boards of the three local authority areas, Herefordshire Business Board, Shropshire Business Board and Telford Business Board.

As a private and public sector partnership, the LEP also works closely with the local authorities of Herefordshire Council, Shropshire Council and Telford & Wrekin Council as well as Chambers of Commerce and other LEPs to maximise opportunities for Marches’ businesses.

The LEP has established working arrangements with the economic development teams of the three local authorities as well as their relevant investment intiatives including Hereford Enterprise Zone, Invest in Shropshire and One Telford.


The Marches LEP
Cameron House
Knights Court
Archers Way
Battlefield Enterprise Park

Telephone: 01743 462 026
For media enquiries contact Be Bold Media on 01952 898121 or email


Marches LEP European Structural and Investment Funds

The Marches European Structural and Investment Fund Strategy (ESIF) is a key component of the Marches LEP Strategic Economic Plan.

More information on the European Structural Investment Fund can be found below:

Click HERE for the Marches LEP ESIF document.

Marches LEP Strategic Economic Plan

The LEP’s Strategic Economic Plan sets out how the partnership intends to make its vision a reality and demonstrates how both central Government funding and European Union funding can be targeted to help drive growth.

The Plan forms the basis of the LEP’s deal with central Government, as it transfers some of its decision making power to the regions and allows both the private and public sector in this area a bigger say on how Government and European money is spent.

Click HERE to download the Marches LEP Strategic Economic Plan.

Marches LEP Skills Plan

Click HERE to download a copy of the Marches LEP Skills Plan (February 2017)

Click HERE to download a copy of the Marches LEP Skills Action Plan (February 2017)






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