OPE's phase 6 timeline

Phase 6 launched on Tuesday 1 August, giving new areas the opportunity to apply to join the programme and existing OPE partnerships the opportunity to access additional funding to further develop their plans.

Partnerships will be able to apply for up to £500,000 revenue funding to deliver land and projects in the local areas.

New in 2017:

  • the Local Authority Land Release fund, announced in the government’s Housing White Paper earlier this year, will provide a pot of £45 million capital funding land remediation and infrastructure projects that will deliver much-needed land for housing. Some schemes may be able to benefit from both funding pots where resource and capital funding is required to allow local authority owned land to be released for housing development
  • a pilot scheme offering existing OPE partnerships the opportunity to apply for a repayable grant of up to £500,000, in addition to any grant funding applied for
  • the introduction of a new Pool of Experts, providing OPE partnerships with the procurement free route to access specialists in anything from feasibility and master planning to health and housing. 

Read the prospectus outlining the full support available through the programme and application process.

Read the LRF Supporting Guidance setting out in detail what information local authorities should provide for DCLG Land Release Fund. Use the Technical Annex as a tool for calculating the approximate economic benefits generated by new housing development.

Read the OPE Benefits guidance that provides an explanation for each of the benefits; capital receipts, reduced running costs, land released for new homes and inward investment.

Timeline for applications

For new partnerships/councils seeking to join

Application stage July 2017
Expressions of Interest open.                                                    Read the EOI guidance 1 August
Expression of interest deadline. 18 August
Decision on expressions of interest (stage one). If successful, awarded up to £50,000. 15 September
Final Services and Assets Delivery Plan (stage two) deadline.    Read the SADP guidance 3 November
Decision on final applications. If successful, join the programme and awarded up to £500,000. 8 December


For existing OPE members

Application stage July 2017
Invite to apply for additional funding to expand programme          Read the SADP guidance 1 August
Deadline for appendix to Services and Assets Delivery Plan 3 November 3 November
Decision on final applications. If successful, join the programme and awarded up to £500,000 8 December


Partnerships are required to complete a supporting basic details form with their Services and Assets Delivery Plan that sets out the programme of work and associated benefits in each of the next ten years. There are three tabs to complete on the form:

  • partnership contact details
  • forecast benefits over a 10 year period for each project
  • funding request breakdown.

Hints and tips on submitting a successful application

Think strategically - Successful OPE areas are using OPE to deliver local priorities. This could be looking at better use of public assets to support integrated health and social care, supporting Devolution, or using assets to support local economic growth.

Get senior level support across your partnership - Having senior decision makers around the table will be key to delivering your OPE ambitions. The best performing partnerships are governed at a senior level across all partnership organisations.

Take small steps to achieve your big goals - A strong programme of work will include some ‘quick win' projects as well as larger strategic projects. Quick wins will help you achieve your longer term priorities by establishing working practices with other public bodies.

Dedicated resources - This isn't easy work. Partnerships and property require energy and resource as much as cash. Your application should show, or request funding to bring in senior dedicated resources to drive programme delivery

Be credible - Your application should show strong project plans for each project have an evidence base for its outcomes to give assurances of deliverability.

Speak to your OPE Regional Team - We are on hand to provide you with support to develop your ideas and your application. We want to get you over the line. Contact your OPE regional team.