The West of England has elected its first metro mayor, Tim Bowles. He will have control over the whole West of England combined authority area, working with existing city leaders to take forward his strategic plan. You can find out more about the new metro mayors and how they work on our FAQ page.
This page brings together the key facts and figures about the West of England economy. It shows what local residents see as the top priorities for the new metro mayor. It also shows what previous elections tell us about voting patterns in the area.
West of England consists of the following local authorities: Bristol, Bath & North East Somerset and South Gloucestershire.
Understanding how the city-region performs on key areas such as productivity and employment helps the metro mayor to assess what he should prioritise. The table below shows how West of England compares to the national average on these indicators.
You can also find detailed data on the areas that the metro mayor has most power over on the West of England Metro Mayor Data Dashboard
Key economic indicators for the West of England
We outlined a set of priorities that the West of England metro mayor should focus on in his first term. Read them in full, or read more below.
Below is a summary of the powers the new West of England metro mayor has, based on the devolution deal agreed with the government.
Click through the presentation below to find out what the different metro mayor candidates said in their manifestos on key issues such as housing and transport:
In May 2016 Centre for Cities commissioned ComRes polling to find out what issues the residents of West of England think should be top priority for their new metro mayor. This is based on the powers they will have, as well as wider priorities. We also asked whether or not they wanted to see more powers handed down to the metro mayor. Below are some of the main findings.
Three in 10 adults (29 per cent) in the West of England think that health care provision should be the most important priority for local politicians.
Interestingly, transport is a higher priority in the West of England (13 per cent) than in other city-regions polled.
Which, if any, of the following issues do you think should be the most important priority for politicians in your city at the moment?
When minds are focused on the specific powers that the new metro mayor will have, a quarter (24 per cent) say that affordable housing should be the top priority for the metro mayor. A significant number also think the metro mayor should invest in road and rail (19 per cent) and focus on major developments and infrastructure (18 per cent).
Of the powers that the new metro mayor will have, which of the following issues, if any, do you think should be her/his top priority in their first 100 days?
Source: ComRes. Average first preference of adults across the West of England (n=501)
More than half of adults from the West of England (53 per cent) say that they agree that the new metro mayor should have greater powers than local council leaders. Three in 10 (31 per cent) say they disagree.
To what extent, if at all, do you agree or disagree that the new metro mayor should have greater powers than local council leaders?
Source: ComRes. All adults in the West of England (n=501). Percentages are rounded.
45 per cent of adults in the West of England say they were previously familiar with the plans to introduce a new metro mayor for their region.
To what extent, if at all, were you previously familiar or unfamiliar with the plans to introduce a new metro mayor for the city-region?
Source: ComRes. All adults in the West of England (n=501).
Conservative Tim Bowles won the first metro mayor election with almost 52% of the vote, compared to 48% for Labour candidate Lesley Mansell. The turnout was just under 30%.
Get up to date on the policies and powers affecting the metro mayors by reading our metro mayors FAQ.
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