Funding opportunities

Current funding streams open for applications

On this page, you can find out more about current funding opportunities. Please scroll down:

Local Growth Fund

There are currently no calls open under our LGF programme.

North East Investment Fund

The North East Investment Fund is currently open for applications. Find out more here.

European Funding


There are currently a number of opportunities for organisations to apply for European Funding that are listed below:

European Social Fund (ESF) calls

Inclusive Labour Markets – North East Region (OC25S19P1510)

Call to run a project to remove barriers to employment and increase prospects for unemployed and economically inactive people in the North East Region LEP area.

For more information, download the call specification.

Value:   Approximately £11,224,820 of ESF is available.

Deadlines: Full application deadline: 2 December 2019

Completion date: Projects must be completed no later than three years and six months after the proposed project start date, however the ESF Managing Authority reserves the right to vary the maximum duration in exceptional circumstances. All ESF Projects must be completed by 31st December 2023. Project costs cannot be incurred beyond this date.

European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) calls

The Business Development, Food Processing and Rural Tourism Infrastructure grants are now open to new applications. You must submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) form before midnight on 16 February 2020.

You could be eligible for a Growth Programme grant if your business is carrying out a project to create jobs or bring more money into the rural economy.

There are three types of grant:

  • Business development
  • Food processing
  • Rural tourism infrastructure

For this funding round of the Growth Programme, the threshold for minimum grants has come down from £35,000 to £20,000, meaning that more small or micro-businesses can be eligible for a grant for their projects. The grants are funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD), which is part of the European Structural Investment Funds (ESIF).

How to apply

The Rural Payments Agency (RPA) will assess all expressions of interest. RPA will look for projects that meet the national and local priorities for funding, and will decide which meet the criteria the best. This means grants are not awarded automatically to an applicant.

There is a two-part application process (starting with submitting an ‘expression of interest’) to tell RPA about the work you’re doing and how the grant could help you with it. The RDPE Growth Programme handbook is available on GOV.UK and contains information on which projects are deemed eligible for a grant and how to apply.

If RPA assesses that your expression of interest is suitable, they will invite you to submit a full application.

How to apply

Applicants should apply through the website, where you will find the full details and guidance notes.

If you would like to discuss a potential project or need help or support completing your application, all seven local authorities in the North East LEP area have a team who can help you.

Want to find out more about projects that the LEP has funded?

View our projects listing now