Jeremy Middleton CBE

Following the decision of the North East Combined Authority (NECA) not to approve the region’s devolution deal, the North East Devolution Commission has been founded to explore ideas for the region’s future.

Chaired by North East businessman and former LEP board member Jeremy Middleton, the commission is made up of experts in areas of policy that could be devolved to all or part of the region. It is made up of health expert, consultant neurologist & life sciences entrepreneur Paul Goldsmith, education expert and former head teacher Philomena Marshall, Centre for Life Chairman Alastair Balls CB, construction entrepreneur Jacqui Miller-Charlton MBE, Newcastle City Councillor Stephen Lambert, former Northern Development Corporation head John Bridges.

The commission will address how devolution could help secure the region's NHS and Social Care, create more, and better paid jobs in the North East, help to provide the region's young people with the skills they need for work, provide a better planning process and deliver more homes, improve the North East's environment, and boost volunteering, charities and philanthropy in the region.

The launch of the commission comes as 100 business people from the region have endorsed a statement in favour of devolution. The group, which includes Entrepreneurs’ Forum Chairman Nigel Mills, Wearside industrialist Gill Southern MBE, Chris Thompson of Express Engineering, property entrepreneur Ajay Jagota and Newcastle-based creative and advertising agency boss Julie Drummond, endorsed the statement, “We believe the North East needs to embrace the opportunity offered by devolution, and we also believe the region needs to come together to overcome all divisions, and win a better deal for the North East”.

Mr Middleton said "I have long been a passionate supporter of bringing powers back from London to the North East, so it was devastating to see the region’s devolution deal collapse. More than 5000 people had joined the campaign for North East devolution on Facebook, and I promised them to continue to campaign actively for devolution for our region. The North East Devolution Commission will ensure that we concentrate on getting the best deal for the region and developing policies that can change our region for the better."

The commission will now release a series of policy papers over the coming months. Further experts on relevant policy areas are expected to be announced.



CONTACT: Chris Rowell on 01325 363436

Notes to Editors:

Jeremy Middleton

Jeremy is a self-made businessman and philanthropist based in the North East. He was a Board Member of the North East Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) from 2011-16 and 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.

He 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.

List of business people

Ajay Jagota Newcastle Keep it Simple Group

Alaisdair MacDonald Northumberland Seanamic Group

Alan Ferguson Blyth

Alastair Balls Newcastle Independent Mental Health Care

Alastair Ruffman Newcastle Norseman Travel Ltd

Alastair Waite Durham Altec Engineering

Alex Giles Sunderland Lateral Advertising Ltd

Alex Iles Newcastle Iles Tours

Alex Morris Newcastle Plainsight Consultancy

Amanda Dunkley Newcastle A.J.D Search and Select

Ami Davies Gosforth Brand Ami

Amanda Newbigging Northumberland

Andrew Doris Cramlington DAD Machinining Ltd

Andy Saunders Newcastle Chartered Accountant

Ben Tansey Alnwick Re:Heat

Ben Staerck Burnopfield Furniture Clinic

Bill Ward Tynemouth Mill Volvo

Bob Eldridge Ovingham Retail-directions

Carlo Nardini Morpeth Pro-ad

Chris Appleby Newcastle Quantum Corporate Finance

Chris Blaxell Newcastle Performance Horizon

Chris Thompson Team Valley Express Engineering

Craig Peterson Newton Aycliffe Growth Capital Ventures

Darren Cleugh Newcastle Sounds Live

David Chapman Cleadon

David Cliff Durham Gedankend Ltd

David Land Bishop Auckland Drive 2 Business

David Varty Cramlington Howard Russell Construction

Dominic Bowser Newcastle Sound Mind and Body Ltd

Dominic Murphy Sunderland Geek Talent Ltd

Duncan Young Newcastle Sanderson Young

Ed Brown Whitley Bay Vega Environmental Consultants Ltd

Erland Rendall Houghton le Spring Atorus Consult

Gary Hunter Co. Durham Redu Group Ltd

Gary Stacey Sunderland Olivers Dental Studio

Geoff Gillie Newcastle GT Gillie and Blair

Geoff Thompson North Tyneside Utilitywise

Gill Southern MBE Durham Wessington Cryogenics Ltd

Gillian Leese Newcastle Gillian Leese Interior Design

Ian Baggett Newcastle Adderstone Group

Ian Dormer Durham Rosh Engineering Ltd

Ian Lewis Newcastle Laurus Executive Search Ltd

Ian Richards Newcastle Northstar Ventures

Jackie Marston Newcastle Jam Marketing Uk ltd

Jamie Paterson Newcastle PTM Group Ltd

Jane Hogan Gosforth St Oswald's Hospice Ltd

Jeff Winn Newcastle Winn Solicitors Limited, On Medical and On Hire Ltd

John Anderson QAEP, CBE Sunderland NHS Providers

John Dickson Cramlington Owen Pugh Group

John Holland Gateshead JR Holland Foodservices and JR Holland Produce LLP

John Savage Newcastle Flame Heating Spares Ltd

Jonathan Dunkley Ponteland Major Family Law

Jonathan Gold Newcastle River Capital Partners

Julian Blades Newcastle Jules B

Julie Drummond Newcastle Drummond Central

Karl Robson Newcastle

Kevan Carrick Newcastle JK Property Consultants LLP

Lauren Sutherland Tynemouth Benefit Fitness Solutions Ltd

Lewis McGreal Newcastle Dream Big

Lorna Moran Newcastle

Louise Richley Newcastle Beyond Digital Solutions

Lynn Wilson Team Valley Express Group

Malcolm Lewis Tyneside Malcolm Lewis Designs

Mark Haigh

Mark Ions Whitley Bay Exclusive Ltd

Mark Lloyd Washington Mark Lloyd Photography

Mark McArdle Newcastle HMC Group, Kids 1st

Mark Squires Newcastle St Ebba Capital Ltd

Martin Barber Newcastle Evolution LLP Business and Tax Advisors

Martin Brown Darlington Barclays

Martin Wrightson North Tyneside Unika Innovation

Matthew Renwick Gosforth

Michael Stephenson

Miles Crossley Alnwick George F White LLp

Neil Harrison Alnwick ReHeat Uk

Neil Stephenson Cleadon South Shields

Nick Moore Newcastle Commercial Edge Consulting Limited, Neuro-Insight Limited, D-Line Limited

Nigel Mills Newcastle Entrepreneur's Forum

Nigel Wright Newcastle Nigel Wright Recruitment

Norman Peterson Growth Capital Ventures

Paul Lancaster Newcastle Plan Digital UK

Paul Newton Newcastle Financial Services

Paul Ruddick Northumberland D-Line Ltd

Paul Taylor Redcar Redcar and Cleveland Council

Paul Varley Newcastle Northern Clothing Company

Paul Woolston Sunderland

Phil Butler Newcastle individual Marine Forensics Ltd

Philippa Clothier Newcastle Clothier Lacey & Co Ltd

Rick McCordall Newcastle Charity Escapes

Roland Tate Newcastle Tiger Corporate Finance

Ross McPhie Co. Durham I Sunk Your Battleship

Sarah McPhie Co. Durham McPhie Design

Shaun Oakes North Tyneside iEvo Ltd

Stephen Purvis Newcastle SGP Technology Group Ltd

Steve Atkinson Gateshead Steve Atkinson Photography

Sunil Khanna Newcastle Medicentrechemists

Tim Cantle Jones Newcastle Future Energy Group

Tony Henfrey

Trish Brooman Gosforth EatCetera

Warwick Brindle Whitley Bay


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