THE VERY fact that James Brokenshire came here to meet One Yorkshire leaders in person – and agree to hold further talks – is to the Communities Secretary’s credit.
Though agreement is still a long way off, the exchanges did appear to be more constructive than the most recent correspondence between the two sides.
And while the Minister defiintely went away with a far better appreciation of the unity that still does exist between Yorkshire’s local authorities, they, in turn, will realise that they, too, need to refine their plans if Mr Brokenshire is to be convinced that this county, as a whole, can contribute far more to the national economy than the combined efforts of a number of city-regions operating as separate entities.
Even though research says One Yorkshire could be worth £30bn a year, a priceless sum at a time of such uncertainty over Brexit, it will be harder for the Minister to say ‘no’ if leaders show how their plans will work in practice while, at the same time, demonstrating a groundswell of public support. The key, however, is maintaining an open dialogue as both sides weigh up their next steps.