Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

European Union - European Social Fund European Funding Network

Personal tools

You are here: Home / Policy / European Structural and Investment Funds in England / Community Led Local Development

Community Led Local Development

A bottom-up approach to provide local projects in small disadvantaged communities.

What is Community Led Local Development (CLLD)?

CLLD is a European Social Fund (ESF) investment priority under the promoting social inclusion and combating poverty Thematic Objective.

In addition to local residents and beneficiaries, ‘Community’ here refers to voluntary and community organisations, as well as private and public sector organisations.

Projects must improve strategic local development and respond to an area’s needs, with an emphasis on using innovative approaches.

CLLD presents opportunities to the voluntary sector as our evidence demonstrates the impact of CLLD is high on groups that have least access to the labour market. CLLD increases employment and skills, social enterprise, and social inclusion which results in a reduction in poverty and improved regeneration of deprived areas.

Is CLLD right for you?

CLLD will only be available in certain areas. The areas need to have between 10,000 and 150,000 inhabitants to be eligible and in the 20% of the most deprived areas in England. See map to find out if your area falls under that category.  Among 39 Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs), approximately 20 had expressed an interest in using CLLD in their ESIF strategies, however, 12 LEP areas have been agreed as the basis of CLLD in England.

The 12 areas are:

  • South East Local Enterprise Partnership area
  • North East Local Enterprise Partnership area
  • Leeds City Region area
  • Humber Local Enterprise Partnership area
  • York, North Yorkshire and East Riding Enterprise Partnership area
  • Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership area
  • Marches Local Enterprise Partnership area
  • South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership area
  • Greater Cambridgeshire Greater Peterborough Local Enterprise Partnership area
  • Greater Lincolnshire Local Enterprise Partnership area
  • New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership area
  • Northamptonshire Enterprise Partnership area.

How will CLLD work?

CLLD will be designed and delivered through community partnerships called 'Local Action Groups' responsible for developing strategy and delivering activities, similar to the Leader model.

Criteria for the use of CLLD are defined in the Partnership Agreement and  agreed in the operational programmes.

There is also a Guidance for Development of Community Led Local Development Strategies for the ERDF and the ESF on the website.

Download the Annex on CLLD in the ERDF Operational Programme

Note that CLLD will not be co-financed therefore match funding will need to be identified.

Cornwall and Isles of Scilly

The Commission has agreed to consider more flexible proposals for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly in recognition of its less developed status.


There will be a two stage process involving a preparatory stage for each LAG area and CLLD strategy and an implementation stage for which programme resources are eligible.

Stage 1 applications will be assessed by DCLG and DWP Managing Authorities, who will take into account the advice of local LEP area ESI Funds sub-committees. Successful applicants will progress to Stage 2 and submit full CLLD applications. Stage 2 is expected from November 2015 onwards and implementation is expected from April 2017.

Further Information

European Funding Network report – CLLD: An essential element in the delivery of the new European Structural Funds.

View NCVO's support tool on CLLD

See the Commission fact-sheet on CLLD

Read the detailed guidance on CLLD by the European Commission

Click here to view a video and power point presentation on the Commission website.