North East Devolution and Levelling Up

Which Side The Bread Is Buttered

The government has given another £8m to subsidise the Tyne and Wear Metro during the next 11 weeks of lockdown, bringing the total so far to £47m. It’s a relatively small amount but is there to do a specific job.

 According to he Chronicle, the chair of the North East Joint Transport Committee (JTC), Councillor Martin Gannon, welcomed the money, though he wants more talks with the government about the longer term funding of the Metro. Fair enough. 

This reasonable outcome came only days after the JTC had agreed to go along with government’s national bus strategy, which is in any case broadly in line with what it has been seeking. ‘We are willing to play our part’ said Councillor Gannon on that occasion. 

Talking about reasonable expectations is a more realistic approach than railing against the government when you don’t get all you want. Since he led the North East’s opposition to a devolution deal in 2016, Councillor Gannon seems to have learned on which side his bread is buttered.