Archbishop steers think-tank’s drive for One Yorkshire

Dr John Sentamu

The Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu has given special impetus to the think-tank that has drawn widespread support in pursuit of the One Yorkshire Devolution plan that was backed earlier this year by 18 Yorkshire Councils.

Yorkshire Party Leader Stewart Arnold was among councillors, MPs, peers, civic leaders, business people and supporters from across Yorkshire at the event at the Archbishop’s Palace in York, that was organised by MPs Robert Goodwill and John Grogan.

Afterwards he said: “I was delighted to be at what was a very significant gathering at the Archbishop’s Palace.

“Council leaders and MPs from all parties, representatives of business, trade unions, civic society, were all behind  One Yorkshire Devolution.

“This would have been unimaginable just a couple of years ago. Hopefully, the Government will take notice and move on our devolution plans.”

Stewart Arnold

Bishop Sentamu launched the One Yorkshire not-for-profit organisation on July 13, and its board will meet for the first time in September. The board members are: Natalie Sykes – Regional Director, Institute of Directors; Nick Quinn – Public Affairs Manager, Yorkshire Building Society; Professor Glenn Burgess – Deputy Vice Chancellor, University of Hull; Allison Page – Office Managing Partner (Leeds), DLA Piper, the law firm; Andy Clarke – Public Affairs Adviser, ASDA Phil Forster – Aviation Development and Corporate Affairs Manager, Leeds Bradford Airport; and Matthew Howarth – Partner, Shoosmiths LLP ,the law firm.

One Yorkshire’s declared priorities will be to:

1) Work closely with the Yorkshire councils on the details and implementation of One Yorkshire Devolution

2) Organise events in Yorkshire and in Parliament to promote the case for Devolution

3) Establish a website, a social media presence and a Press strategy to promote ‘One Yorkshire’

4) Engage with all political parties, business, trade unions, the voluntary sector, faith groups, academia, youth and pensioner groups and civic society.


Welcoming guest to his afternoon tea event Bishop Sentamu said: “In an age of populism and identity politics – here is a better way of bringing people together for the Common Good.

“Today we come together from different parts of Yorkshire, from different political parties, different ethnicities, different religious traditions – and we are all looking for the best for the whole community of Yorkshire.

“By getting together this way we can work towards a strong, prosperous, diverse and creative and open Yorkshire; a place of shared opportunity.”

Archbishop John Sentamu and One Yorkshire delegates

Read the full press release from the Archbishop’s Palace at

John Sentamu has already played an important role in the devolution debate. In December 2017, in an attempt to break the local deadlock over devolution, he wrote to the then Northern Powerhouse Minister Jake Berry outlining plans designed to overcome Government objections to the One Yorkshire solution.

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