£3.5m investment package agreed

AN investment package worth £3.5 million aimed at boosting skills, employment opportunities and infrastructure across Inverclyde has been rubber-stamped. 

Councillors unanimously agreed a series of projects which will now go ahead over the next two years at a special meeting of Inverclyde Council’s environment and regeneration meeting on Monday 17 April 2023.

A total of 23 initiatives will be progressed using the local authority’s £3.5m share from the UK Government’s Shared Prosperity Fund.

Over £1m will be allocated to a number of employability schemes to help residents, particularly those in hard to reach areas and who are currently out of work, to help equip them with skills for employment, training or further or higher education.

Just under £750k has been earmarked for a range of schemes supporting local businesses covering everything from budgeting and growth to developing net zero plans and networking.

Other initiatives in the pipeline include: almost £300k to develop and deliver town centre improvements; £150k to enhance lighting in public parks; and £150k to improve Coronation Park in and around the Shipbuilders of Port Glasgow sculpture.

Six projects worth over £600,000 aimed at developing numeracy skills for people aged 19 and over have also been approved, supported specifically through the Shared Prosperity Fund’s Multiply grants scheme.

Some of the various projects will be delivered wholly or alongside partner organisations, including CVS Inverclyde, Parklea Branching Out and West College Scotland. 

Funded by UK Government logo
Funded by UK Government logo

Councillor Michael McCormick, Inverclyde Council’s convener of environment and regeneration, said: “A bold and diverse range of initiatives have been developed across all council services aimed at supporting individuals, businesses and communities throughout Inverclyde to thrive.

“We already provide a great deal of help and support to residents and local businesses through various existing schemes but this money from the UK Prosperity Fund will complement the existing offering and provide even more opportunities.

“Whether it’s skills and education for individuals, practical advice and grants for new and existing small and medium sized enterprises, or improvements to our town centres and parks, there are benefits here for everyone and I look forward to seeing these initiatives being delivered over the next couple of years.”

The council developed the investment plans alongside its partners in the Glasgow City Region.

They are as follows:

Shared Prosperity Fund

  • Public Lighting – Improvements to lighting in public parks (£150,000)
  • Town Centre Action Plans – Development of action plans for Greenock, Gourock and Port Glasgow (£90,000)
  • Town Centre Improvements – Taking actions from the project above and delivering projects in town centres (£190,000)
  • Port Glasgow Shipbuilders Environmental Improvements – Improvements to enhance the visitor experience in Coronation Park around the Shipbuilders statue (£150,000)
  • Parklea Community Hub and Gardens – Support work at Parklea Branching Out to enhance the community hub and landscaping (£80,000)*
  • Invergrow – Supporting the development and delivery of projects from the Inverclyde Food Growing Network (£170,952)*
  • Inverclyde Community Enterprise Programme – Through CVS Inverclyde, working with local social enterprises to provide groups with tools to develop and grow their enterprises to be more sustainable (£120,000)*
  • Net Zero: How do I go about it? – Supporting businesses to become more energy efficient through business audits and small grants (£126,500)
  • Improving your business skills – Supporting businesses to enhance their business skills and knowledge to enable them to be more competitive (£155,000)
  • Business Networking – Creating forums for local business owners to meet, learn about a topic of interest, share ideas and explore opportunities to work together e.g. Women in business, tourism (£22,400)
  • Supporting growth and new start growth – Providing grants and expert support to support businesses with growth potential (£115,000)
  • Business Accelerator – Programme of training to support new start businesses to improve business survival rates (£208,855)
  • Youth Volunteering Programme – Working in partnership with CVS Inverclyde, create a programme of volunteering opportunities to give young people skills and experience which will support them to progress towards employment (£121,486)*
  • Community Option – Parklea Branching Out delivering a diverse range of personal development skills and opportunities for clients who are vulnerable, with autism and/or additional support needs, providing access to further education, training and employability options (£90,000)*
  • Steps 2 Progression – Embedding employability in areas of most need, identifying economically inactive young people and providing support to progress towards employment e.g., training (£350,000)
  • Progress to Employment – Person centred, all age, end to end support for economically inactive people to progress to employment (£483,283)
  • New Opportunities – Pre-employability pipeline programme of activity and training to support economically inactive people towards employability engagement (£199,092)


  • Prison leavers maths and numeracy – Maths and Numeracy courses aimed at prisoners, those recently released from prison or on temporary license (£39,064)
  • Partnership Maths and Numeracy – Development and delivery of bespoke maths programmes, working with the community, learning and development partnership, aiming to engage hardest to reach, to improve maths and numeracy (£76,099)
  • 1:1 Maths and Numeracy Support and Volunteer Training – Maths courses delivered to support people attaining Level 5 maths (£146,745)
  • Everyday Maths – Procured activity programmes to enhance client’s everyday numeracy e.g. shopping, budgeting (£173,000)
  • Workplace Maths and Numeracy Programmes and Staff Training – Working with employers to enhance maths and numeracy skills (£76,941)
  • Multiply – West College Scotland (WCS) – Additional college programmes to support community members without formal qualification to level 5 maths (£79,000)*

*These projects will be delivered wholly or in partnership with partner organisations.

A further initiative will be led by Glasgow City Region through the Clyde Climate Forest scheme and has attracted a grant of £8,600.

Inverclyde Council is part of the Clyde Climate Forest, which aims to plant 18 million trees planted across urban and rural areas of the city region, delivering ecological and climate benefits.

More information about the various projects is contained within a report to the environment and regeneration which can be accessed through the Related Links section of this page and the meeting is available to watch back on the council’s YouTube channel or by clicking the link in the Other Websites section of this page. 


The UK Shared Prosperity Fund is a central pillar of the UK Government’s Levelling Up agenda and provides £2.6 billion of funding for local investment by March 2025. The Fund aims to improve pride in place and increase life chances across the UK investing in communities and place, supporting local business, and people and skills. For more information, visit https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/uk-shared-prosperity-fund-prospectus or click on the link in the Other Websites section of this page.