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What we do.

Our dedicated Growth Board, led by Thames Estuary Envoy Kate Willard, is here to drive forward our action plan, “The Green Blue”. 

The Thames Estuary is backed by the Government as the UK’s number one growth opportunity. It is our role to make the most of the region’s unique assets and unparalleled location to turn its potential into good, green growth for the local area and the national economy. 

We are working closely with businesses, investors, residents and communities, building partnerships to transform the area. We bring together the right people with the right skills, to combine motivation and connections, and create opportunity.  

We are about more than talking. We are here to get things done.

Visit our Contact page to get in touch with us directly.

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Action plan.

The Thames Estuary Growth Board Plan, “The Green Blue”, is our ambitious plan to transform the Thames Estuary area of North Kent, South Essex and East London.

Through our plan, we will maximise 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.

 

Action Plan Key Points 

 

We are delivering growth.

  • The Thames Estuary is essential for the national economy in driving recovery and growth
  • Our dedicated growth board, led by our Envoy, is here to deliver what’s needed: job growth, transport infrastructure, inward investment, housing solutions and green energy infrastructure
  • We are capitalising on our unique location to attract business and investors

 

We are using the Thames to its potential.

  • Solutions, including a Freeport, maximise the area’s potential for international trade
  • We are improving and increasing use of the river to carry freight of all types
  • We will amplifying use of the river for passenger transport 

 

We are improving infrastructure.

  • We are backing significant infrastructure projects that will boost economic growth
  • We are promoting and enabling digital connectivity in the Estuary

 

We are building partnerships.

  • Our connections mean we can bring together the right people with the right skills at the right time
  • We are supporting initiatives to help businesses develop skills
  • The Thames Estuary will become a hub for cultural and creative programmes

 

We are going greener.

  • The Estuary is home to beautiful green spaces
  • We are ensuring growth is sustainable and works with the environment, not against it

 

Above all, we are making things happen.

We are the go-to place and the go-to people.

Please click HERE  to read The Green Blue.

Estuary region map.

Our interactive map of the Thames Estuary region shows all the current and upcoming projects and the various road, rail, air, sea and river transport links.

Why the Estuary is amazing.

Located in the south east of England, on the country’s most important waterway, we are in a good place…

 

A good place for business.

The Thames Estuary connects the UK to the rest of the world. We offer viable access to global markets and directly into London, thanks to our location on the Thames.

Situated on a world-famous river, the Thames Estuary has unique advantages. A thriving hub for import and export, the river offers freight solutions for national and international trade as well as opportunities for passenger transport.

Our board, led by our government-appointed Envoy Kate Willard, use their connections with the UK government to push things forward, build partnerships and deliver economic growth both for the area and nationally.

 

A good place to connect.

Our excellent transport links, including a co-ordinated approach across the Estuary, mean we offer better connectivity than anywhere else in the UK.

We are increasing use of river and rail to carry passengers, and we are improving routes for cycling and walking.

We are backing key projects such as improving connectivity to Ebbsfleet and the Lower Thames Crossing, the most ambitious UK road project since the M25.  

 

A good place to live.

The Thames Estuary is a beautiful area, rich in green spaces. As part of our Action Plan, we are ensuring that there is improved access to these spaces and the riverside.

We are bringing clarity to the housing debate, helping to implement sensible and thought-through expansion plans. 

We are working towards universal access to fast and reliable connectivity to digital infrastructure.

 

A good place for culture.

We value culture and creativity. We know it plays a role in happy, successful places and the significant contribution it makes to economic growth. 

We are supporting the Thames Estuary Production Corridor, the estuary Festival in spring 2021, and the implementation of Arts Council England’s new strategy ‘Let’s Create’.

 

Background.

The Thames Estuary is Britain’s next big growth opportunity potentially worth billions of pounds to the UK economy.

In 2018, The Thames Estuary 2050 Growth Commission published an ambitious vision for growth in the area of east London, north Essex and south Kent to unleash its potential. An exciting and ambitious vision, it is regarded as integral to the future of the UK economy.

Kate Willard has been appointed by the Government to drive this vision, leading a dedicated Thames Estuary Growth Board.

The Growth Board has set out its action plan, entitled “The Green Blue”, to realise the amazing potential of the Thames Estuary. With plans for developments over the next two years, looking ahead across the next ten, The Green Blue is about making great things happen.

We call our plan “The Green Blue” because we are creating good, green growth using the important, blue waterway of the Thames that connects the UK with the rest of the world.

Good, green growth means driving economic growth whilst ensuring that natural assets continue to provide the resources on which our wellbeing relies.

The Thames Estuary Growth Board will deliver and support existing projects which will lead to job creation; housing solutions; new transport and digital infrastructure, ultimately contributing billions to the economy by 2050.

We are on a mission to transform the Thames Estuary. Read our Action Plan to find out more and get in touch with us directly via our Contact page.

We can’t wait to hear from you.

Frequently Asked Questions.

The Thames Estuary is Britain’s biggest growth opportunity, with the potential to create 1.5m jobs and £115bn GVA to UK economy. To fulfil its potential, the 2050 Growth Commission was presented to the UK Government, who responded by setting up a dedicated Thames Estuary Growth Board, led by our Estuary Envoy, Kate Willard. Together, we have developed an exciting and ambitious Action Plan, called “The Green Blue”, to transform the area and allow it to thrive.

The Thames Estuary is the place where the River Thames meets the North Sea. In the south east of England, it covers North Kent, South Essex, East London, the City of London, as well as the Thames itself. There are 17 local authority areas, these are: Barking & Dagenham, Basildon, Bexley, Canterbury, Castlepoint, Dartford, Gravesham, Greenwich, Havering, Maidstone, Medway, Newham, Rochford, Southend-on-Sea, Swale, Thanet, and Thurrock.

The Thames Estuary Growth Board Plan is the ambitious plan set in place by our dedicated Board to maximise 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.

We call this plan “The Green Blue”. The “Blue” refers to the water of the Thames: the UK’s most important waterway, and the potential it creates for the area. It is “Green” because we will fulfil the area’s growth potential in a sustainable way, working with the environment, never against it.

To see The Green Blue in full, please visit the ‘What we do’ page.

The Thames Estuary’s goal is to deliver green, economic growth for the area, and for the country. We will achieve this by connecting and activating the high-investment hydro-economy of the Thames Estuary.

We are enabling improvements to key infrastructure projects, responding to housing challenges, backing cultural and creative programmes, creating hundreds of thousands of new jobs and boosting the economy.

Our dedicated Growth Board is about more than just talking – we are about action. We work closely with local communities, businesses, authorities and residents, building partnerships to make great things happen.

Situated on a world-famous, multi-functional river, the Thames Estuary has unique advantages for businesses. A thriving hub for import and export, the river offers freight solutions for national and international trade. We offer viable access to international markets and directly into London, thanks to our location on the Thames.

The Thames Estuary offers residents the opportunity for a cleaner, healthier future with a beautiful area to live, rich in green spaces. We are working to improve access to these spaces and the riverside. We also hope to provide more extensive housing opportunities by responding to housing challenges and enabling digital connectivity.

If you have a question about the opportunities in the Thames Estuary and how you can get involved, contact the Thames Estuary Board via the ‘Contact’ page. We would love to hear from you.

Kate Willard, our Estuary Envoy, is leading our growth board to drive forward our Action Plan with direct connections to the Prime Minister and Cabinet. The board will speak as one coherent, unified voice. Kate has laid out a set of five criteria for what we will and will not do:

  1. We will add value and not duplicate. We will see where we are needed, and where we are not. We will help when we are needed, and won’t when we are not.
  2. We expect to be held to account. This Board and this Envoy are backed by the government and have a real responsibility to deliver.
  3. We will set clear targets and report on these.
  4. We will lead by listening. There are lots of good and great voices to be heard.
  5. Most importantly we will have a single voice, the Thames Estuary Growth Board, to communicate the aspirations for the Estuary.

The Thames Estuary Growth Board, led by government-appointed Envoy Kate Willard, brings together members from across North Kent, South Essex, East London, the City of London and the River Thames to work as one, unified voice.

The Thames Estuary board is a mixture of private and public Board members. Possessing a high level of expertise in their area and fresh to this type of project, each member has the drive and ambition to bring in new thinking. They are at the razor-sharp, cutting edge of business and are crystal clear about the Thames Estuary we want to create.

For more information and a full list of Growth Board Exec Team members, please visit the ‘Who we are’ page.

Our dedicated Growth Board is responsible for driving forward our action plan, “The Green Blue”.  It is our role to make the most of the region’s unique assets and unparalleled location to turn its potential into good, green growth for the local area and the national economy. We bring together the right people with the right skills and work closely with businesses, investors, residents and communities, building partnerships to transform the area. We connect with local and central government on delivery of key actions; and drive forward priorities that help regenerate and improve the area.

We also work to leverage significant amounts of private sector investment and make the Estuary the most compelling investment proposition. Each Board member is brilliant: possessing a high level of expertise in their area and fresh to this type of project, they have the drive and ambition to bring in new thinking and deliver the greenest and most productive estuary in the world.

For more information, visit the ‘What we do’ page.

Yes. The Thames Estuary is all about green growth, and maximising sustainability through its prime location. We are pushing forward a number of green initiatives, including supporting development of decarbonisation technologies, the greening of transport and energy across the Estuary, and backing an action plan in response to the Government commissioned natural capital study. There are many businesses of all shapes and sizes in the Estuary that are growing whilst positively impacting and enhancing the Environment.

For more information, read about our ‘Estuary Visionaries’.

The Thames Estuary Envoy is Kate Willard. She has been appointed by the Government to drive forward “The Green Blue” action plan to transform the area. The Estuary Envoy chairs the Thames Estuary Growth Board, delivering the programme of work that will breathe new life into the area. The Estuary Envoy is responsible for appointing members to the Growth Board and championing the Estuary nationally and internationally.

Kate was CEO of the UK’s first rural regeneration company and during that period was headhunted by Stobart Group where she has now been for 12 years. Kate will continue in her role at Stobart in a reduced capacity, working closely with national government departments, local authorities and other partnerships.

In addition, Kate has a number of non-executive roles, including Chair of Arts Council North and also sits on the Arts Council’s National Council. She has lived and worked in Hungary, France and Belgium as an independent regeneration expert with the European Commission on major transnational projects in employment, social cohesion and regional development.

Please visit the ‘Who We Are’ section for more information.

The Thames Estuary is backed by the Government as the UK’s biggest growth opportunity. With the potential to create 1.5million jobs and add value of up to £115bn to the nation’s economy, it is integral to growth and recovery post-Brexit and post-Covid.

Our Envoy, Kate Willard, was appointed by the government to drive forward our Action Plan and deliver good, green growth. With direct connections to the Prime Minister and Cabinet, Kate keeps the government updated on progress and uses her contacts to create partnerships and make things happen.

The Thames Estuary Growth Board is all about helping businesses in the area to grow and encouraging businesses to re-locate to this thriving hub.

To get involved and find out more about what the Estuary could do for your business, visit the ‘Contact’ page to get in touch with the Board directly. We can’t wait to hear from you.

Join Us.

Whether you’ve got a question, suggestion or would just like to join us - we’d love to hear from you.

Read more.

Why the estuary is amazing.

Action plan.

Map of the estuary region.