Should Norwich have an elected mayor? Cities minister Greg Clark says city would benefit from the post

Greg Clark MP Greg Clark MP

Wednesday, March 5, 2014
3:42 PM

Smaller cities like Norwich could benefit from having an elected mayor, the minister for Cities has said as he also indicated that having a clear figurehead could play a role in bringing business to the area.

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Greg Clark, who is the minister in charge of the Norwich and Ipswich City Deals, said that when competing for business investment with other cities, having a mayor helped to command attention.

He said that while Norwich did not miss out domestically from not having an elected mayor, with MPs taking on the role of campaigning and “badgering” central government, smaller cities and towns like Middlesborough had benefited from electing a mayor.

He said that Joe Anderson, the first directly elected mayor of Liverpool, had been convinced after visiting Shanghai before he was appointed that it was important, after being seated down the pecking order because he was not listed as a major.

Mr Clark said: “It convinced him that it was quite important, the ability to command the attention, It is increasingly the case that cities compete with other cities.
“You need a spokesman. It applies to the bigger cities, but I think all smaller cities and towns would benefit from having a mayor. Middlesborough has benefitted from having a mayor.”

He also hailed the Norwich and Ipswich City Deals which he said would also benefit the rural areas surrounding the urban centres.

He said that while there was a recognition that Norwich and Ipswich were the bigger centres, a lot of people across Suffolk had connections with Ipswich.

“They might live outside but work in Ipswich and do business there. The training investment. Matching young people without skills to training opportunities linked to employers, is available across Suffolk.
“There is support for small businesses. The support and advice services have been very fragmented. They have been brought together.”

11 comments

  • Erm, having seen what has happened with the likes of Bett as our all-powerful PCC who now considers himself above talking to us plebs despite us paying him £75k plus expenses per year I would think not.....

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    User Removed

    Thursday, March 6, 2014

  • This Atlanticist fantasy has been rejected by those cities asked in a referendum,apart from Bristol.Time and time again history teaches the folly of putting too much power in the hands of one person,invariably a man.It inevitably leads to corruption which is why you will find so many US mayors languishing in prison.A collective voice is undoubtedly more dull and boring but there are times when dull and boring work best.

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    Peter Watson

    Thursday, March 6, 2014

  • No different type of a Mayor - not a ceremonial mayor in robes but a political leader for the Council.

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    Mick Castle

    Thursday, March 6, 2014

  • The key difference is that an Elected Mayor is a leader elected by all the people - rather than "appointed" leader by the political party with the most seats on the Council. It isn't just an American thing - much of Europe have Mayors too.

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    Mick Castle

    Thursday, March 6, 2014

  • Excellent idea for the County Council. No one would vote Gnobbs or his band of bozos in would they?

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    alecto

    Friday, March 7, 2014

  • Erm, having seen what has happened with the likes of Bett as our all-powerful PCC who now considers himself above talking to us plebs despite us paying him £75k plus expenses per year I would think not.....

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    User Removed

    Thursday, March 6, 2014

  • It does effectively. The Mayor is taken from the ranks of the majority party, ie more people have voted for the people in that party than any other party. Except of course when someone from another party is given the task as a reward for voting with the majority party to swing a vote. Thirty pieces of silver.

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    alecto

    Wednesday, March 5, 2014

  • Leftie or Greenie oh dear enough of that selfie ideas

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    PaulH

    Thursday, March 6, 2014

  • Should Norwich have an elected mayor? NO Norwich has enough things it likes to waste money on already.

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    ggj666

    Wednesday, March 5, 2014

  • Not another person in a silly necklace simpering around looking important. We already have too many of those. It used to be that a local "important" person was needed to open an old cats' home or the local sewer facility. But now we can hire Z list celebrities on an as and when basis and just pay their expenses. And they don't even wear silly necklaces. These Mayor bods require a car, a chauffeur, feeding, an office, staff, a glass carriage drawn by white mice (no I made that one up but you get how silly it all is)

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    alecto

    Thursday, March 6, 2014

  • Erm, having seen what has happened with the likes of Bett as our all-powerful PCC who now considers himself above talking to us plebs despite us paying him £75k plus expenses per year I would think not.....

    Report this comment

    User Removed

    Thursday, March 6, 2014

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