First ever ‘Convention of the North’ – set for September 2018

26/06/2018, PR8832

•	Leaders and elected mayors gather to plan the Convention of the North
• Leaders and elected mayors gather to plan the Convention of the North

Cllr Peter Box CBE, Chair of Key Cities and Leader of Wakefield Council came together with other northern council leaders, and elected mayors last Saturday (23 June) to set out the details for the first ever Convention of the North.

The Convention will take place on 6 September, in Newcastle, as leaders seek to create a powerful new voice for the north. It offers the first chance for a united north to speak to government with a strong voice, a crucial step in preparing for the impact of Brexit.

Political and business leaders will be joined by representatives from unions, community groups and other organisations to discuss the issues and opportunities ahead.

The leaders’ decision to form the convention comes after the difficulties on northern rail services reinforced the need to revive the devolution agenda.

Delegates gathering for the Convention in September will have their say on the transport needs of the north, how their voice should be heard in Brexit discussions, the education and skills agenda and unite behind a cross-northern demand for greater devolution.

Cllr Peter Box CBE
Cllr Peter Box CBE, Leader of Wakefield Council

Cllr Peter Box CBE, said: “This is a great opportunity for us to champion all that is great about the north.

“Together we have very powerful voice to challenge government to deal with the issues we face in the north and show how we are ready to play our part in the economic growth of this country.”

The Convention is not intended to be a new statutory body but will meet regularly and speak for the north on important national and regional issues.

Those who attended the meeting last Saturday (23 June), included: Peter Box, chair of Key Cities group and Leader of Wakefield Council, Nick Forbes, Leader of Newcastle City Council; Judith Blake, Leader of Leeds City Council and chair of Core Cities group; Susan Hinchcliffe, Chair of West Yorkshire Combined Authority; Peter Jackson, Leader of Northumberland County Council; Sue Jeffrey, Leader of Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council; Simon Henig, Leader of Durham County Council; Shabir Pandor, Leader of Kirklees Council; Samantha Dixon, Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council; Bruce Pickard, North Tyneside Council; Sue Murphy, Manchester City Council; Steve Rotheram, Liverpool City Region Metro-Mayor; Dan Jarvis, Mayor Sheffield City Region; and Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham.

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