Key Cities elects new Chair

Key Cities, a collaboration of mid-sized cities across the UK, has formally announced a new Chair following an election amongst the member cities.

Cllr John Merry CBE, Deputy City Mayor of Salford takes the position of Chair with immediate effect, joining Deputy Chairs Cllr Michael Mordey and Cllr Alan Jarrett on the group’s leadership team. His appointment follows former Cllr Peter Box MBE’s recent resignation as Leader of Wakefield Council and Chair of the Key Cities group.

Cllr Merry has been Deputy Mayor of Salford since May 2016, following the arrival of the City’s second Directly Elected Mayor. He was first elected to represent the Broughton ward in 1990 and, until becoming Deputy Leader of Salford City Council in 1998, held various educational positions both within the City Council and externally, most notably as Vice Chairman of the AMA Education Committee and Chair of the Council of Local Education Authorities.

He was elected to the position of Leader of Salford City Council in May 2003. Following the election of the City’s first Directly Elected Mayor in 2012, Cllr Merry was given responsibility for the Children & Young People portfolio and later the Skills & Work agenda.

Cllr John Merry, Chair of Key Cities, commented:

“It is an honour to be elected as Chair of Key Cities, and I look forward to working closely with our leadership team and group of leading mid-sized cities as we seek to unlock inclusive economic growth across the country.

“We are well placed to continue the excellent collaboration that takes place across our membership, and speak as one voice to ensure government policy and investment is channelled where and how it needs to be in 2020 and beyond.”