Chairman appointed for new Local Enterprise Partnership
A founding chairman has been appointed for a Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) which will be officially formed this spring.
In anticipation of the formal creation of the Hull and East Yorkshire LEP on 1 April, leaders of Hull City Council and East Riding of Yorkshire Council, together with the chair of the Hull and East Riding Business Engagement Board, have appointed James Newman as chairman.
Newman was the founding chairman of the Sheffield City Region LEP, from 2010 to 2015, having retired following the signing of one of the first City Region Devolution Deals in October 2015.
He is currently chairman of Finance Yorkshire and the South Yorkshire Community Foundation and has a number of other business and charitable roles, nationally and in Yorkshire.
He said: “I am delighted to have been given this opportunity to take this role. The creation of this LEP marks the beginning of a new era for the region.
“I look forward to working with both the leaders, their councils, the business community and voluntary sector to create a successful partnership, which will bring more funding to the region, allowing our strategically important industries and all our businesses to drive economic growth, which will benefit the region and all its employees and communities.
“It will also be important to make sure we continue the excellent work of the current Humber LEP and work closely with our colleagues across the Humber Estuary, where our combined assets and expertise are of national importance.”
Thomas Martin, chairman of the Hull and East Riding Business Engagement Board and of the recruitment panel, said: “I am delighted that such a thorough recruitment process has secured our region the expertise, and an external perspective, that we will draw on heavily as we continue our devolution journey.
“A devolution deal for the region is vital to our future success together.
“The leaders of both councils, supported by the business community, are clearly aligned on this journey, and I very much hope James, as the new chair, will draw extensively on the knowledge that has made the existing Humber LEP so productive.
“There are new boundaries, new rules and new relationships to be forged and these must drive additional opportunities throughout our combined coastal, rural, urban and estuary communities.
“The leaders have shown the way and we all now need to align around James to ensure the region continues to punch above its weight throughout the national ‘Levelling Up’ debate.”
Councillor Richard Burton, leader of East Riding of Yorkshire Council, said: “James has an excellent track record of running major businesses across Yorkshire and led the formation of the Sheffield City Region LEP as its first chair.
“On behalf of the council, I look forward very much to working with James and to the role that the new organisation will play in the future of Hull and East Yorkshire.”
Cllr Stephen Brady, leader of Hull City Council, added: “The Hull and East Yorkshire LEP is business led and will bring together partners from the private, public and third sectors, along with collaborating with a wide-range of local partners, to act as a powerful, informed and independent voice for Hull and East Yorkshire.
“James will play a vital role in shaping, developing and leading this partnership.”