THE Archbishop of York believes the One Yorkshire campaign for countywide devolution has reached the “moment of no return”.
Dr John Sentamu spoke to The Yorkshire Post after hosting a hundred political, business and civic leaders at his official residence in York.
The Yorkshire Day gathering at Bishopthorpe Palace also saw the launch of a renewed push to persuade the Government to agree to a groundbreaking deal.
“Today marks a moment of no return,” the Archbishop told this newspaper after welcoming representatives from the 18 local councils, plus Sheffield City Region mayor Dan Jarvis, who are backing One Yorkshire.
“The road ahead maybe bumpy but we are going to be One Yorkshire. This talk of One Yorkshire is a conversation that needs to happen – for the benefit of all the people of God’s own county!”
Earlier the Archbishop told guests about the discussions that he had convened on devolution – and how this was the best way for the county’s five million plus residents to come together for “the common good” in an age of “populism and identity politics”.
“The reality is that many decisions are best made locally. Devolving power means people are better served by faster, more contextually relevant decisions, with real local accountability,” he said. “We had a supper here to discuss this with some Yorkshire leaders from politics, industry and other businesses a few months ago.”