The North East LEP is backing the Beacon of Light to create jobs and help grow the region’s economy.
A £1.8m investment from the North East Local Enterprise Partnership’s Local Growth Fund was awarded to the Foundation of Light towards the construction of the £20m development.
The £270m Local Growth Fund, secured as part of the North-East Growth Deal, supports the North East LEP’s delivery of the Strategic Economic Plan, which aims to create 100,000 more and better jobs by 2024.
Sir Bob Murray CBE, Chair of Trustees for the Foundation said: “The North East LEP has demonstrated their commitment to training and job creation with their support for the Beacon.
We’re thrilled that they share our vision to help more local people into education and training to help prepare them for employment.
“The Beacon of Light will provide opportunities for adults and young people to gain qualifications and work-based training to get them into full-time work and we are grateful to the North East LEP for backing the Beacon.
I would also like to particularly thank Chairman Andrew Hodgson, who has shown a great deal of interest in the Beacon and been very supportive.”
The Beacon of Light fuses together sport, education, health and well-being and the world of work like no other place in the UK.
The striking cube-shaped development, which is six storeys high and will be illuminated at night, includes education and training zones alongside world class facilities for no less than 12 sports, with an indoor football pitch above.
Andrew Hodgson, Chair of the North East LEP, said: “The Local Growth Fund exists to support capital projects that will provide economic growth, as well as pioneering initiatives like this one that align with our aim to develop skills infrastructure in the region and support economic inclusion.
“The Beacon of Light is a unique city centre development that will not only bring people together and make an outstanding and lasting difference to local people’s lives but it will create jobs, directly and indirectly, and help to grow the North-East economy.”
Chief Executive of the Foundation of Light Lesley Spuhler added: “The award from the North East LEP Local Government Fund is a significant and important one for the Beacon. It also represents a big vote of confidence in what the Foundation can achieve in supporting local people in the region working with partners.”
The award of £1.8m from the Local Growth Fund contributed towards the capital cost of the Beacon.