Tracy Brabin has celebrated her first anniversary as Mayor of West Yorkshire.

Slaithwaite-based Ms Brabin, the former MP for Batley & Spen, was elected as West Yorkshire’s first metro mayor on May 9 2021. She was also England’s first female metro mayor.

Working alongside the county’s five local authorities – including Kirklees – Ms Brabin has:

  • Supported the creation of more than 500 new green jobs for young people;
  • Secured £900m to invest in the region’s transport system, including £200m to progress a new mass transit system;
  • Launched an enhanced partnership with bus operators to lower fares and improve services;
  • Delivered a new Police and Crime Plan with a focus on women and girls’ safety and secured multi-year funding deals to reduce violence and support victims;
  • Committed £40m to tackle the climate emergency over the next three years;
  • Funded the Mayor’s Screen Diversity Programme to increase the flow of talent into the creative industries;
  • Expanded the number of low earners eligible for free training via the devolved Adult Education Budget.

Ms Brabin said: “One year ago I was truly proud and honoured to be elected as the first ever Mayor of West Yorkshire.

“On this first anniversary of my election I would like to thank everyone who placed their trust in me. I have never taken this support for granted and never will.

“In the past year, I am grateful to all the partners from the public, private and community sectors who are helping to deliver on the pledges I set out which will make our region an even better place to live and work.

“We have begun to radically overhaul West Yorkshire’s transport networks and are focused on delivering improvements to bus services, new cycle routes and further progress on delivering a mass transit system for the region.

“We have worked to support our economic recovery from the pandemic and ensure everyone benefits. This of course includes supporting our vibrant creative sector.

“We are making our communities safer for everyone, especially women and girls, and furthered our work to tackle the climate emergency to reach our goal of net zero carbon emissions by 2038.

Deputy mayor for crime and policing Alison Lowe (left) with Tracy Brabin

“I can promise the people of West Yorkshire that I will continue working hard to deliver on my priorities and to make our region the best place to live, to work, to raise a family and to start a business.

“West Yorkshire is the Heart of the North, and I will be the strongest possible voice for our region. I will continue making the case to government for more funding and more devolved powers so that we can truly level-up our communities and ensure that everyone living here has the opportunity to flourish.”

Ms Brabin has also just been chosen to chair the influential M10 mayoral group, taking over from former Mayor of South Yorkshire, Dan Jarvis.

The M10 compromises the 10 metro mayors, who between them represent more than 20 million people and nearly 50% of England’s GDP.

The cross-party M10 group works together to press government on strategic policy areas such transport, climate, skills, funding and devolution.