Support from residents and stakeholders
Support from residents
Independent research commissioned by the council to better understand the views of residents has found overwhelming local support to back York. Working within the codes of practice of the Market Research Society, NWA Social and Market Research polled a sample of 504 residents and found:
- more than two-thirds (70%) of all respondents said that they would prefer ‘York to remain as an independent council and to work closely with a single new North Yorkshire council’
- only 1 in 12 (8%) overall said that they would prefer ‘York to become part of a new council, with City of York Council merged with the current Scarborough, Selby and Ryedale Councils’
- the large majority (83%) of all respondents said that they feel a ‘very strong’ or ‘fairly strong’ connection to the ‘City of York’
Support from stakeholders
City of York Council consulted a wide range of stakeholders about a potential local government reorganisation through a series of round table discussions. In meetings with leaders from education, the voluntary and charitable, business, cultural and heritage sectors there is a strong consensus that the existing footprint should remain intact.
Stakeholders expressed support for a variety of reasons, with stability and resilience noted as of paramount importance as the city recovers from the coronavirus pandemic.
Stakeholders have commented through letters of support sent direct to Luke Hall MP, Minister for Regional Growth and Local Government.
Jon Flatman, Chairman York City Knights, said:
“Given the need for the council to be prioritising COVID Recovery at this time, unnecessarily drawing York into structural changes at this time is unwelcome and would be detrimental to city wide efforts to build back better.”
Andrew Digwood, President York and North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce, said:
“York’s proportionate contribution to the proposed devolved region economically and in terms of its distinct identity, strengths and potential cannot be overstated, and for that reason the Chamber supports the opportunity to retain that distinct identity within the devolution and unitarisation proposal.”
Max Reeves, Director Helmsley Group, said:
“We already sit in uncertain economic times and changes to the existing structure of York as an authority have the potential to create unnecessary uncertainty as we seek to make further investment around the city”
Simon Morrit, Chief Executive York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Phil Mettam, Accountable Officer NHS Vale of York Clinical Commissioning Group, Professor Stephen Eames, CBE Chair Humber, Coast and Vale Health and Care Partnership, said:
“We regard the retention of the City of York Council as a requirement for the alignment and streamlining we need in order to more readily break down boundaries between health and care and simplify joined up working.”