Northern business voices ‘to be brought together for first time since 1472 Council of the North’

Northern Powerhouse Minister Jake Berry speaks in Newcastle today
Northern Powerhouse Minister Jake Berry speaks in Newcastle today

The heads of 11 northern bodies representing business and local authorities are to form a new government-funded board to help support the Northern Powerhouse project.

The NP11 board will be made up of the chairs of Local Enterprise Partnerships, which were set up in 2011 to lead local economic growth and job creation.

Announcing the plan today at a conference in Newcastle, Northern Powerhouse Minister Jake Berry said the board would advise the Government on issues such as how to increase productivity, overcome regional disparities in economic growth and tackle the historic north-south divide.

He described it as a modern day Council of the North, created in 1472 by King Edward IV as a base for royal authority to be communicated in the North.

NP11 will be led by Roger Marsh, who chairs the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership, and report to the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government on a quarterly basis.

Mr Berry said: “The Northern Powerhouse will be a vital support to the UK in achieving this and so I am very pleased the eleven LEP Chairs have agreed to form the new NP11 board.

“For the first time since 1472, we will bring together the business voices of the Northern Powerhouse in our Council for the North.

“They have one task: to enrich all the peoples of the North of England – this is the foundation stone of the Northern Powerhouse and, with the skills and expertise of the NP11, we will shift the North’s economy into overdrive.

“Together we will deliver a North of England which is an economic powerhouse and one which can proudly take its place on the world stage both now and as we leave the EU.”