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Getting Government geared up

24th June 2020

Kate’s role as the Government-appointed Envoy means she has an important role in connecting with the Prime Minister and Cabinet. Kate regularly updates her Government contacts with developments on the Thames Estuary, and utilises her connections to drive forward our action plan. 

In this week’s blog, Kate talks about her recent letters to Government. 


This week, we began the process of giving Government more information about our intentions for the Estuary.

The formation of the Thames Estuary Growth Board, and my appointment as Envoy, were both recommendations from the Government’s response to the 2050 Thames Estuary Growth Commission, so it’s important we demonstrate progress and momentum to our main stakeholder.

I have written letters to key Cabinet ministers – whose portfolios are relevant to our brief – including the Secretaries of State for Transport; Media, Digital, and Culture, and Housing, Local Government and Communities.

I also wrote to Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who himself was vocal about the Estuary’s potential as Mayor of London. In my letter, I explained our progress between December and now, and asked him for his support to help us realise our ambitions.

I wrote: “In this complex and challenging post-COVID and post-Brexit economic climate, we are catalysing, coordinating and clarifying Thames Estuary-based investment propositions to drive good green growth. Growth opportunities across the Estuary that directly underpin growth in the national economy.

“The Action Plan maximises the benefits, potential and opportunities of the UK’s most important waterway, the River Thames, and the land, communities, places and businesses that are bound to it. The Thames Estuary is essential for the national economy in ensuring economic recovery and growth.

“The Growth Board, alongside myself as Envoy, will help enable businesses, national and regional government, local authorities, business and partners to work together to deliver this plan.

“With a single and coherent voice to you in Government, we will help ensure we deliver what’s needed; job growth, an appropriate transport infrastructure, major inward investment, coherent and sensible housing expansion, a green energy infrastructure and a workforce ready to meet the challenges and opportunities that are emerging.”

For me, this most recent set of letters was a primer for the launch, getting us firmly on the radars of those parts of government who don’t yet know us, and reinforcing our credentials to those that do. 

This is just the beginning of an ongoing dialogue, and I look forward to the many, positive updates I will be sharing with the Prime Minister and Cabinet in future.


If you have a question for Kate Willard or would like to get in touch about our action plan, please visit the Contact page. We would love to hear from you.