Capital in Hockwold cum Wilton? What the ‘Eastern Powerhouse’ could look like...
PUBLISHED: 07:50 17 March 2016 | UPDATED: 10:00 17 March 2016
With George Osborne announcing the devolution of powers to East Anglia in Wednesday’s budget, we take a tongue-in-cheek look at what devolution in East Anglia may look like, including possible candidates for mayor and who could play in an ‘East Angila United’ football team.
The combined population of East Anglia is nearly 2.4m with the largest proportion of people living in Norfolk. Our precise scientific calculations (via Google maps) show that Hockwold cum Wilton, a village 10 miles from Thetford, is pretty much where Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridge meet so this would be the ideal place to build the new capital of East Anglia.
The devolution plans also revealed that East Anglia will have an elected mayor for the first time. Now we know that this will most probably be a seasoned politician but we have compiled a shortlist of local people who could really fly the flag for the area.
Four candidates for the Mayor of East Anglia
•Ryan Bennett: The Norwich City defender has previously played for both Ipswich and Peterborough so has the local knowledge of all three counties to bring harmony and cohesion to the newly devolved area.
•Stephen Fry: One of Norfolk’s best known residents and alumni of Cambridge University, Fry is no stranger to the world of politics fronting a number of campaigns for Labour and speaking out on gay rights.
•Trisha Goddard: Famous for her TV series that helped families through their troubles, the Norwich resident would be the perfect person to come to during disagreements between the three counties, which of course there will be.
•Ed Sheeran: Arguably one of the biggest names in world music at the moment, the singer raised in Suffolk could use his international platform to help bring investment and exposure to East Anglia.
Finally, football is very important to the area with Norwich City and Ipswich Town having one of the fiercest rivalries in the English game. But what if teams in the “Eastern Powerhouse” had to play together in a newly formed outfit called East Anglia United? We take you through a proposed starting 11, who all have connections to at least two of the counties in East Anglia.
East Anglia United
Home ground: Hockwold cum Wilton City Stadium
Manager: Bryan Hamilton- The Northern Irishman made 153 appearances for Ipswich Town and was Norwich City manager in 2000 before joining the Ipswich Town coaching staff.
John Ruddy - Born in St Ives, the goalkeeper started his career at Cambridge United and has been at Norwich City now since 2010.
Russell Martin - Made 56 appearances for Peterborough United before joining Norwich City on a permanent deal in 2010.
Ryan Bennett- The defender was part of the youth set up at Ipswich Town for 10 years. He has since played at Peterborough United and Norwich City.
Matthew Upson- Born in Diss, the former England defender spent at Ipswich Town’s academy as child.
Harry Toffolo - The left-back joined the Norwich City Academy in 2012 and is currently out on loan at Peterborough United.
Michael Spillane - Born in Cambridge, the versatile player has had spells at both Norwich City and Cambridge United. He is now playing for Lowestoft Town.
Wes Hoolahan - The Irish international trained with Ipswich Town as a teenager and has been at Norwich City since 2008.
Ross Jarvis - Born in Fakenham, Jarvis has played for Norwich City and Cambridge United. He is currently playing for Lowestoft Town.
Luke Chadwick - In a long career, the midfielder made appearances for Norwich City and Cambridge United.
Leroy Lita - The striker made 16 appearances for Norwich in a loan spell and trialled for Ipswich in 2014.
Chris Martin - Born and raised in Suffolk, the forward made 102 appearances for Norwich City scoring 25 goals.
•Let us know your thoughts on the devolution plans by commenting below.
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