Liverpool City Region’s Metro Mayor, Steve Rotheram, held the first in a series of public Question Time-style events in St Helens on Tuesday 7th November.
Mayor Rotheram chose St Helen RFC’s stadium as the venue for his launch, and the event was chaired by local CEO of St Helens Voluntary and Community Action, Sally Yeoman.
The event was the first of its kind, with Mayor Rotheram only having been elected to the newly-created role in May this year. He plans to hold one event per month in each city region borough, meaning it won’t be long before the people of St Helens have the opportunity to put their views and questions to the Mayor again.
The evening was well-attended, with around 50 local residents turning out on a wet and windy November night to challenge the Mayor on a wide-range of issues; including housing, town centre regeneration, and the effects of public service cuts.
There were a number of questions which related to issues outside of the powers devolved to the office of the Metro Mayor, however Mayor Rotheram was keen to ensure residents’ queries were answered.
A recording of the session will be uploaded to the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority’s website in due course -http://liverpoolcityregion-ca.gov.uk/
Speaking after the event, Mayor Rotheram said:
“I was delighted to start my Question Time events in St Helens this evening, honouring the commitment I made in my manifesto, to be an accessible and available Mayor.
And where better to start than St Helens. A place where people are not afraid to speak their minds and tell you what they think.
The purpose of me holding these events is three-pronged:
- I want to be available to hear from local residents, take their views and answer their questions on a regular basis;
- I want to familiarise as many people as possible with the role of a Metro Mayor, and the vision I have for our region – one that is ambitious, fair, green, connected and works together;
- And I want to challenge the well-worn cliché that politicians are only seen at election time.”
Sally Yeoman, who chaired the event, said:
“It was great to have Steve here in St Helens for the first public Question Time of his Mayoralty.
I think that the local residents who attended, though they did not hold back and weren’t afraid to challenge the Mayor, were at least grateful for the opportunity to have their questions answered.
I look forward to chairing similar events in the future.”