£50 million investment programme launched to help transform the Northern Valleys of South East Wales

A new investment programme aimed at catalysing economic growth and social impact in the Northern Valleys was unveiled today (11 April 2024). The Northern Valleys Initiative aims to play a long-term levelling-up role in tackling some of the intra-regional disparities that exist within the Cardiff Capital Region.


The Initiative, totalling £50m, has been set up by Cardiff Capital Region (CCR) and supported by Local Authority Delivery Teams from Blaenau Gwent, Bridgend, Caerphilly, Merthyr Tydfil, Rhondda Cynon Taf and Torfaen. This will support businesses and projects that have the ability to increase prosperity in the region.


Investments will be focused on businesses that offer high-growth potential and the ability to help transform the regional economy.


Operating over a five-year period, the programme will act as a financial catalyst to support businesses that are either based in the Region or that wish to relocate for the long term. Typical grants and investments available for successful applicants will range from (but are not limited to), £100k to £2m.


The programme will concentrate on infrastructure, digital connectivity and tourism sectors delivering a wide range of outcomes including jobs, ecological regeneration and decarbonisation.


The Northern Valleys Initiative aligns with CCR’s strategic ambitions to:


–  tackle economic disparities and boost growth

–  enhance innovation capability and capacity

–  decarbonise our environment by 2050

–  improve our physical and digital infrastructure


Cllr Anthony Hunt, Chair of CCR Committee, said:

“Building on previous work in the region, the Northern Valleys Initiative will deliver an exciting opportunity to stimulate both the private and public sector investment required to generate additional jobs, boost prosperity, foster community resilience and help drive the circular economy in six local authority areas: Blaenau Gwent, Bridgend, Caerphilly, Merthyr Tydfil, Rhondda Cynon Taf and Torfaen”.


Welsh Secretary David TC Davies said:

“It’s fantastic news that this fund, backed by the UK Government, is going to help transform businesses in this area.


“We are focused on growing the economy of Wales, creating jobs and spreading prosperity, and investments like this are invaluable in making this aim a reality.”