Jeremy Middleton, North East LEP board member and Mayoral Candidate

Following the North East Combined Authority delaying its decision on the North East Devolution Deal, LEP board member and Mayoral Candidate Jeremy Middleton has called on Combined Authority leaders to ignore vested interests go ahead with the deal.

Mr Middleton said “This delay means there is a very real risk that the North East will be left behind again. It is clear that despite the best intentions of the region’s local authority leaders, they are not able to overcome divisions in the Labour Party.

“Certain politicians, the same ones that have held the North East back for decades, are now prepared to turn down this opportunity of more power and investment for our region. The deal means bringing these things back from Westminster, not taking them from local councils. It seems some local councillors would rather leave political and spending powers hundreds of miles away in London, if devolution could result in them going to someone else in the North East.

“The council leaders need to have the courage of their convictions, to go through with the deal they signed and stand up to the factions in their own party pressuring them to do otherwise. I’m calling on them to ignore the internal Labour party divisions and secure this deal and do what is right for the North East.”

ENDS

ISSUED ON BEHALF OF MIDDLETON ENTERPRISES

CONTACT: Chris Rowell on 01325 363436

Notes to Editors:

Jeremy Middleton

Mr Middleton is a self-made businessman and philanthropist based in the North East. He has been a Board Member of the North East Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) since 2011 and is Chairman of the North East LEP Investment Fund, which makes recommendations to the LEP Board for the £25m Growing Places Fund and the £30m Infrastructure Fund.

Mr Middleton has carried out a range of sponsored fundraising for a variety of charities which to date include the North Pole, Mount Kilimanjaro, Mont Blanc, The Haute Route, Mount McKinley, Mount Elbrus and a cycle ride from London to Paris.

In 2012 Jeremy was awarded a CBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours List for Services to Politics and Charities.

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Jeremy Middleton, North East LEP board member and Mayoral Candidate
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