News Story

The latest on our push for a Moray Growth Deal


In the last bulletin we spoke about the announcement in September by Elizabeth Truss, MP and Chief Secretary to the Treasury, where she formally invited the Moray Growth Deal team to bid for a Growth Deal for Moray. This “green light” announcement was swiftly followed by a mention of the Moray Growth Deal in the Chancellor of the Exchequer’s speech during the Autumn Budget statement.

Following these announcements, members of the Moray Growth Deal team met with officials from the UK and Scottish governments in Edinburgh at the beginning of December to discuss the proposals and next steps. On the evening of the same day the team attended an event hosted by Stewart Stevenson MSP at the Scottish Parliament to promote interest in the Deal.

All business cases have been developed to a sufficient level to give a clear understanding of the projects and how they align with government strategy and the needs of the Moray area. The next stage is formal negotiation towards a Heads of Terms agreement.


Following the workshops held in Edinburgh in December, a revised programme overview document was submitted at the end of January laying out the Moray Growth Deal proposals to both governments. There are a number of other deals being negotiated at national level at present which means that we cannot give a clear timetable of when negotiations may start.

We are utilising the time while we are waiting for the next stage to prepare the negotiation team and update stakeholders via our governance structure. We are also working on defining the benefits and economic impact we expect to accrue from the programme.

Progress since last update

  • Moray bid mentioned in Chancellor of the Exchequer’s Autumn Budget statement
  • Workshops with government officials
  • Updated programme overview submitted

Targets for next stage

  • Prepare negotiation team
  • Further develop the economic case
  • Start negotiation toward Heads of Terms with both governments

Key risks

Resources – there remains a risk that we continue to expend resource on business cases which ultimately may not attract government support or funding.

Risk mitigation

In order to mitigate this risk, the programme board has adopted a pragmatic approach to further development of business cases until we are in formal negotiations with both governments. 

Recent highlights

Stewart Stevenson MSP hosts Moray Growth Deal event at Scottish Parliament (as pictured).

Key Contacts

Programme Board

Rhona Gunn (SRO)

Moray Council

Jim Grant

Moray Council

Gordon Sutherland

Moray Council

Donna Chisholm

Highlands & Islands Enterprise

Andrew Stanley

Highlands & Islands Enterprise

Stephen Sheridan

Skills Development Scotland

David Patterson

Moray College, UHI

Fraser Grieve

Scottish Council for Development & Industry

Alan James

Developing Young Workforce

Sarah Holmes

Moray Business Women

Project Manager

Dave Moreton, Moray Council


SOC/Strategic Outline Case: In simple terms the first stage of the business case for a project, where options are explored by relevant experts.

Scottish Futures Trust: Infrastructure delivery company owned by Scottish Government who have advised and assisted with previous city/region growth deals.

Stakeholder: Anyone with an interest in the programme of work; in this case includes the public, local businesses, councillors, MP/MSPs, etc.

Heads of Terms: The agreement in principle to develop detailed business cases for agreed projects.

Statement of Intent: Document explaining the issues, progress and proposed solutions.

Business Assembly: A small group made up of members of local business community to champion the Moray Growth Deal and ensure that it is sensitive to the needs of business.


If you have any questions or comments, please contact the project manager or email the Moray Council PMO at

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