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North Yorkshire Leaders Campaign for 'Right' Devolution

North Yorkshire Leaders Campaign for 'Right' Devolution

Published by Jon Burke at 12:05am 1st August 2020. (Updated at 1:31pm 3rd August 2020)

The leaders of North Yorkshire’s seven district and borough councils have joined forces to launch “Working together to get change right” – a campaign to create a people-centred bid for local government reorganisation in York and North Yorkshire.

The campaign begins on August 1, Yorkshire Day – a day that was originally celebrated in 1975 as a protest against local government reorganisation.  

However, 45 years on, council leaders say they are not fighting against reform, but are standing up for the right deal for residents, services and the economy.

The government has made it clear to local councils in North Yorkshire and York that they must reorganise local government in order to secure a devolution deal for the region. 

District and borough council leaders are now working together to put forward the right proposals for reorganisation, which will maintain close links to communities and ensure residents and businesses still have a voice.  

Speaking on behalf of the council leaders’ group,Leader of Scarborough Borough Council, Councillor Steve Siddons, said:

“We were in discussions with the Minister earlier this month, and it is clear that the government is open to granting devolved powers and potentially billions in investment to our area, but only if local government is reorganised first. It’s really not a question of “if” reorganisation will happen. It’s more a question of “how”.  

A mega council, covering the entire North Yorkshire area – the biggest county area in the whole country - has been mooted. But we don’t believe that’s workable, or in the best interests of our people, places and economy.  Our citizens deserve better, which is why we’re campaigning to create an alternative bid that gets reorganisation right.”

In a letter sent to The Times this week, the council leaders called for “good old-fashioned Yorkshire common-sense” to prevail on local government reorganisation, which they say should be centred on workable geographies and an understanding of local communities and economies.

Councillor Siddons said:

“Reorganising local government will affect the lives of 800,000 people, so we’ve got to get it right. Over the next few weeks we will be reaching out to communities, businesses, councillors, parish councils and other local organisations, to find out how we can build on what we already do well, and where things could improve. 

We’ll be doing a lot of listening. We want any bid that goes before government to have local support, and we hope that government will respect that grass-roots approach.” 

He has been speaking to Yorkshire Coast Radio's Karen Liu:

RELATED STORIES: North Yorkshire County Council Leader On Devolution Plans


There are 6 comments on this page.

Zen master7, on 1st August 2020 7:14am
Classic. This is all about council leaders trying desperately
to grind the process to a halt in order to save their own
jobs and positions within the council.
Delay and receive a poor deal, we are good at digging out heels
In in this country. Let's just get on with it!
yorkshireboy, on 1st August 2020 8:02am
The best laugh I've had in years.

In this article Steve Siddons says he wants to build on what SBC already do well.

So let's look at what SBC do we'll.

They do well at lending rate payers money to Alpmare.

They do well spending millions on creating a big concrete open space on the seafront.

They do well wanting to spend £24m to knock down the Argos building that was recently sold to new owners and create student flats.

Now if that is Mr Siddons slant on doing well I honestly believe the rate payers of SBC need to question the competence of him and his fellow councillors.
Peter croft, on 3rd August 2020 4:03pm
Yorkshire boy makes a good point about the money which has been spent in Scarborough.
But I would point out all administrations In SBC either Labour, conservative or independent have all gone along with the same agenda, pour money into white Elephant projects in Scarborough, fail to introduce a precept to pay for local services, which all other areas have to pay.
Finally in Whitby systematically sell off all council owned assets, examples TIC, Helredale playing fields, council depot stakesby vale,Council offices on st hildas terrace and skinner street, Privatised toilets and fail to reinvest any of the money back into Whitby’s economy
It’s as though all councillors knew that one day a larger authority would be created which would prevent them from selling assets and reinvesting in white elephants.so they acted quickly before anyone could stop them... but maybe I’m just too synical
Dont get me started, on 3rd August 2020 4:13pm
All councils waste money. All councillors waste money. Nothing new.
Chippy33, on 3rd August 2020 5:57pm
Memories of 1974 when Scarborough ripped the assets out of Whitby and Filey. Again they are making sure Scarborough gets everything and Whitby and Filey nothing before devolution. Slippery Sid, Dodgy Derek , Flying Fox etc, all had their noses in the same trough.
yorkshireboy, on 4th August 2020 10:59am
As a Filey resident we pay SBC which is like throwing money away but we also pay Filey Council.

Please don't ask me why we pay to two councils who don't seem to do anything

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