‘I think the Northern Powerhouse is whatever we want to make it’ says Leader of Bradford City Council

Leader of Bradford City Council and Chair of West Yorkshire Combined Authority, Councillor Susan Hinchcliffe joined Downtown CEO and Group Chairman, Frank McKenna to discuss the government’s Levelling Up White Paper, economic development opportunities for West Yorkshire, and which further devolution powers Susan would like to see come to the Combined Authority.
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on whatsapp
Share on email

Downtown in Business hosted ‘Growth without gimmicks – what next for the Northern Powerhouse?’ at Banyan Restaurant, Leeds. Leader of Bradford City Council and Chair of West Yorkshire Combined Authority, Councillor Susan Hinchcliffe joined Downtown CEO and Group Chairman, Frank McKenna to discuss the government’s Levelling Up White Paper, economic development opportunities for West Yorkshire, and which further devolution powers Susan would like to see come to the Combined Authority.

The conversation started with Susan discussing the amount of projects that she is overseeing at the moment and the exciting ambitions that she has for Bradford and West Yorkshire. Susan swiftly moved on to discussing levelling up, talking about health and life expectancy and how the levelling up should mean everybody nationwide should have the same opportunities in terms of employment and having opportunities leading to a healthy lifestyle for all citizens. Susan also highlighted the challenges regarding the levelling up white paper and talked about authorities funding property according to their needs. While speaking, Susan told of how she hopes that we become more planned as a country rather than putting reactionary measures in place, which we have become accustomed to due to the pandemic. 

Susan acknowledged the exciting opportunity arising that Bradford is hoping to be a city of culture in 2025 and the benefits of this in cultural regeneration. Having good cultural outputs makes the community feel happier about where they live and creates a sense of nourishment.

During the question and answer session, devolution was mentioned in terms of skills shortages, education gaps and the deals that have been done. Susan was questioned on the strengths of the deals to which she discussed hoping to deliver on devolution and hopes that regions can be trusted to follow the plans in place and she would like to see more activity regarding the skills agenda. To get an economy right on track you need good skills and good transport which is a real problem which the DFT and Treasury don’t understand. Susan stated that people in the region need to be better connected not just in Bradford, but across all cities in the North. For example, reducing journey times between Manchester and Bradford. It was highlighted that it is important that people are well connected socially, and not just economically. Another highlight was the requirement for the improvement of transport across the North to encourage people to be able to commute to work between different Norther cities and towns. 

Susan concluded by emphasising the importance of the existing collaboration between the Northern Mayors and that their regular meetings help, and will continue to help, to boost this agenda. Susan ended the discussion by stating ‘I think the Northern Powerhouse is whatever we want to make it’. 

Overall, the event was extremely thought-provoking, facilitating important conversations and collaborations between delegates. We would like to thank Banyan Bar and Grill for their superb hospitality.

We have many events coming up in Leeds and nationwide. To view our upcoming events and register, please visit our events calendar page.

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on whatsapp
Share on email
Downtown in Business
Which department is your enquiry regarding. If unsure select other.
Please summarise why you are contacting Downtown in Business.

JMW Solicitors

We are delighted that JMW Solicitors are our latest Business of the Week. Since 1978, JMW have been helping people and organisations in all kinds of legal matters.

Read More

Arcadis

We are delighted that Arcadis are our latest Business of the Week. Arcadis is the world’s leading company delivering sustainable design, engineering, and consultancy solutions for natural and built assets.

Read More