England's Economic Heartland

Stretching from Swindon to Cambridgeshire and from Northamptonshire to Hertfordshire, England’s Economic Heartland brings political and business leaders together in a strategic collaborative partnership with a shared commitment to realise the region's economic potential while achieving net-zero carbon.

We provide the region’s voice on strategic infrastructure and services. Our leadership is focused on addressing barriers to realising our potential.

  • We are the Sub-national Transport Body for the region. Our overarching Transport Strategy is a 30 year strategic vision for our transport system that puts the needs of businesses, individuals and the environment at the forefront of investment decisions
  • Our work on wider strategic infrastructure is focused on making sure investment in transport, digital and utilities infrastructure is ‘joined up’
  • Our work with our delivery partners is focused on identifying investment priorities, getting the funding secured and then delivering improvements to budget and on-time.
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The philosophy behind England's Economic Heartland is:

  • Strategic infrastructure issues (and solutions) extend beyond any one single area.
  • Issues that are common to one or more areas can benefit from a co-ordinated response.
  • There is a need for stronger integration of investment by Government, its agencies, local authorities, as well as infrastructure and service providers.
  • To push the case for investment through a single voice and at the right scale to have impact and success.

Sub-national Transport Bodies

There are now seven Sub-national Transport Bodies covering the entirety of England outside of London.

The Strategic Transport Forum is the established Sub-national Transport Body (STB) for the Heartland region.

STBs advise the Secretary of State for Transport on the investments requirements of their region.

Core functions of Sub-national Transport Bodies are the creation of a long-term transport strategy that sets the framework for sub-regional transport investment and planning going forward, and to prioritise infrastructure requirements.

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Oxford-Cambridge Arc

A significant part of the Heartland has been identified by the Government as a national economic priority – the Oxford to Cambridge Arc. This designation builds on the National Infrastructure Commission’s 2017 report: Partnering for Prosperity – a new deal for the Cambridge – Milton Keynes –Oxford Arc.

England's Economic Heartland provides leadership on strategic transport infrastructure in support of the Arc, working closely with other Arc related activity.

Strategic Delivery Partners

Seven private sector companies form EEH's Strategic Delivery Partners Group, aimed at realising the economic potential of the region.

They are Kier, WSP, Jacobs, Ringway Jacobs, Skanska, Volker Fitzpatrick and Atkins.

All the companies involved in the group currently provide services and works for one or more of the councils which make up EEH, following their respective competitive tender processes. They work collaboratively to provide technical advice to EEH on its work programme, ensuring its commissions offer best value for money and benefit from the latest thinking and technological developments.

In addition to work on the Transport Strategy, the group contributes to EEH's development and delivery of its Major Road Network, whilst providing insight into EEH's ongoing capability and capacity study, aimed at getting the best out of available resources to deliver the ambitious infrastructure improvements the region requires.

England's Economic Heartland leadership

Martin Tett

Chairman, England's Economic Heartland

Leader, Buckinghamshire Council

Dave Hodgson

Chair, England's Economic Heartland's Strategic Transport Forum

Mayor, Bedford Borough Council

Leadership members:

  • Ian Hudspeth, Leader - Oxfordshire County Council
  • Steve Count, Leader - Cambridgeshire County Council
  • Mayor James Palmer, Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority
  • Mayor Dave Hodgson - Bedford Borough Council
  • Richard Wenham, Leader - Central Bedfordshire Council
  • David Williams, Leader - Hertfordshire County Council
  • Hazel Simmons, Leader - Luton Council
  • Peter Marland, Leader - Milton Keynes Council
  • Matt Golby, Leader - Northamptonshire County Council
  • David Renard, Leader - Swindon Borough Council
  • Jeremy Long, Chair - Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership
  • Peter Horrocks CBE, Chair - South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership
  • Andrew Smith, Chair - Buckinghamshire Local Enterprise Partnership
  • Paul Moorby, Chair - Swindon and Wiltshire Local Enterprise Partnership

England's Economic Heartland programme team:

  • Martin Tugwell – Programme Director
  • Naomi Green - Head of Technical Programme
  • Lyndsey Cox – Business Unit Manager
  • Antony Swift - Project Lead
  • Abi Nichols - Project Lead
  • James Golding-Graham - Innovation Manager
  • Adam King – Communications Manager