A number of West Yorkshire organisations have received a combined investment of £11.4 million to deliver projects that will support local businesses to drive growth and innovation, Mayor Tracy Brabin has announced.

Successful projects include £3.8 million towards a new health and wellbeing innovation centre at the University of Huddersfield’s National Health Innovation Campus.

The University of Bradford will also receive £1.1 million to boost its research and development facilities for local manufacturing businesses to use.

The announcement follows news that West Yorkshire has been named as the Government’s third Investment Zone, which will unlock £220 million of investment for health tech and digital businesses to grow and innovate.

Mayor of West Yorkshire, Tracy Brabin said: “West Yorkshire is the best place in the country to start and grow a business.

“The multi-million-pound investment into vital projects will support our local businesses to drive innovation and create good, well-paid jobs.

“And it will help to grow our economy as we work to build a stronger, brighter West Yorkshire that works for all.”

Led by the West Yorkshire Combined Authority, the eight approved projects are to be part-funded by the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

Supporting local businesses and championing the regional economy is one of Mayor Tracy Brabin’s key pledges.

Funding awarded to voluntary and private sector companies will help to launch programmes for businesses to innovate, grow and diversify by sharing knowledge, expertise and resources.

Leader of Leeds City Council and Chair of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority Business Committee, Cllr James Lewis said:

“This is fantastic news for both established and emerging businesses in West Yorkshire and further evidence that the region is an ever growing hub of innovation and ambition.

“We are determined to continue working with partners across the region, supporting local companies to thrive and ensuring West Yorkshire enhances its already impressive reputation as a place where businesses of all types and sizes can flourish.”

Wider support is available for businesses in West Yorkshire through the Combined Authority’s Growth Service, which is helping to create a productive and resilient regional economy.

For further information, visit: westyorks-ca.gov.uk/growing-the-economy.