North of the Tyne devolution details revealed with region promised £600m

North of the Tyne devolution details have been revealed today with those living in the north east to benefit from £600m of investment which the government claim will create 10,000 new jobs and boost the local economy by £1.1bn.

The devolution agreement will create a new combined authority comprised of Newcastle City Council, North Tyneside Council and Northumberland County Council. The devolved powers will see the introduction of an elected mayor and new powers for the region, bringing the north east up to speed with cities like Manchester and Liverpool who are further down the line. North of Tyne Combined Authority will essentially be more responsible for tackling major issues around housing and employment.

Northern Powerhouse minister, Jake Berry, said: “This groundbreaking, multi-million pound deal – sitting alongside the Metro funding boost – truly passes power to the people, and is a pivotal moment for the Northern Powerhouse. With a strong voice in a new mayor, a new Wear crossing and the globally-significant Great Exhibition of the North, this is a new golden era creating jobs, growth and prosperity for the resurgent north east.”

A major component of the new governmental package will be about improving infrastructure with £337m being delivered to fund the replacement of the 40-year-old rolling stock on the Tyne and Wear Metro. It marks a big breakthrough for owner and operator Nexus who have repeatedly requested money to replace old and unreliable carriages. Newcastle residents can now hope to benefit from the new stock by 2021.

Toby Hughes, the managing director of Nexus, said: “The Government has recognised how vital Metro is to the economy and lives of people in North East England. We made a strong case for funding which enjoyed very widespread and active support from the business community as well as our passengers. This announcement allows us to begin the search for a train builder immediately, and see new Metrocars start to arrive little more than four years from now.”

Nick Forbes, leader of Newcastle City Council, said: "The devolution deal we have negotiated is our region’s next step towards creating a North East economy with above average wages and below average unemployment. We now have a real opportunity for our region to come together and turn our ambition for more and better jobs into reality."

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