A CABINET of city leaders has been formed to try to boost the economic potential of the regions of England.
Eight council chiefs – including Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson – will sit on the new body which wants to help drive growth in other parts of the country besides the south east.
Birmingham, Bristol, Leeds, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham and Sheffield will all be represented in the cabinet.
Each member will have a portfolio, with Mayor Anderson being responsible for housing and construction. The cabinet will be headed by Manchester’s long-serving leader Sir Richard Leese.
Speaking ahead of today’s first meeting, which was due to take place in Liverpool, Sir Richard said: "I would hope that the government would take this opportunity of joining with the core cities to drive forward an ambitious programme of growth and employment.
"The setting up of a cabinet of the leaders of core cities will enable us to work closer together."
On the eve of its first meeting the members of the cabinet sent a letter to Prime Minister David Cameron, stating that "as the leaders of England’s biggest city economies outside London we share the government’s ambition to grow the economy and believe the core cities are critical to addressing the current imbalance."
Mayor Anderson said Mr Cameron had been invited for a meeting, adding: "If the government is serious about seeing the economy thrive and creating more jobs they will work closely with us."