The Prime Minister, Local Government Secretary Robert Jenrick and Minister for Regional Growth and Local Government Simon Clarke today spoke with the M9 group of Mayors and leader of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority to update them on the current situation and to discuss their role in the response to coronavirus.
“The Prime Minister agreed that the Mayors have a vital leadership role to play in planning for the economic recovery in their own respective regions and made clear that the Government will continue to work closely with them as it seeks to restart the economy whilst preventing a second wave of the virus.”
Following the meeting, a Downing Street spokesperson said:
“The PM thanked the Mayors for their incredible efforts in tackling this unprecedented public health and economic challenge.
“Clearly, as we get this whole country back on its feet, mayors should be at the forefront of local recovery and the Prime Minister welcomed today’s constructive discussion about what more we can do to support businesses and people in their areas.”
This has been welcomed by West of England Mayor, Tim Bowles, who said:
“Everyone has been doing their bit to stop this virus spreading, and that has saved lives and protected our NHS. It’s been an enormous effort, and it has worked, but it’s had an unprecedented impact on our people’s jobs, businesses and livelihoods. So now we need a clear plan to recover and renew the West of England’s economy while avoiding the dangers of a second peak of the virus.
“That plan has been my focus in these past few weeks, allowing our councils to focus on the emergency at hand. Now the Prime Minister has asked me to accelerate that work to get our region moving again; from supporting our businesses, workers and their families, to getting our digital and transport networks right.
“The West of England has a brilliant story to tell and a wealth of potential, so I know that we can all pull together and seize the opportunity to once again do things differently, and emerge stronger than we were before.”