Closer Links

This project has now come to an end.

Closer Links is one of a range of projects supported under the LSIS Regional Response Fund, where providers are joining forces to promote collaborative, sector-led activities to deal collectively with operational, funding and planning challenges set by new government agendas.

Between 1 November 2012 and 31 July* 2013, One East Midlands worked closely with New College Stamford to engage with partners and stakeholders; facilitating a programme of targeted capacity building activities across the learning and skills sector.

The Closer Links project focused on enabling the learning and skills sector to work together to address at the challenges of compliance when entering into collaborative funding bids and/or sub-contracting arrangements for public and commercial funding. It also allowed us to take forward some of the associated key recommendations around building stronger cross-sector relationships from ‘Ducks in a Row’ the final report from the Forward Communities project, available to download at

The project was divided into four strands of activity.


Activity Strand 1

  • Regional briefing events; providing information on what commissioners/funders are looking for and guidance on compliance and quality requirements that regularly underpin funding agreements for public and commercial funding.

  • Compliance Health Check Clinics: organisations will have the opportunity to attend a mini compliance health check clinic, where they can begin to exam in more detail how closely their current compliance and quality procedures meet the ever tougher requirements set by funders.

  • To access resources related to Activity Strand 1 click here.


Activity Strand 2

  • A Cross sector CPD (continuing professional development) programme: VCS/third sector organisations will be invited to put forward a menu of CPD training they would be able to offer to colleges, so colleges have a better understanding of what is available. This will be for circulated to colleges before the end of summer term.

  • To access resources related to Activity Strand 2 click here.


Activity Strand 3

  • Work shadow knowledge exchange opportunities between third sector organisations and FE colleges. 

  • To access resources related to Activity Strand 3 click here.


Activity Strand 4

  • A cross-sector skills sharing and project dissemination event.


For further information on any of the activity strands linked to the Closer Links project please email

The Closer Links project ran a series of briefing events during Spring and Summer 2013. For more information on these briefing events click here. To download resources from these briefings click here.

To access a range of useful resources relating to the Closer Links project click here.