Public backs more powers for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Mayor – new Centre for Cities’ poll finds
Cambridgeshire voters have backed more powers for the area's metro mayor according to a recent poll.
There is overwhelming public support for more devolution to the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Mayor according to Centre for Cities’ polling by Savanta ComRes ahead of next month’s election.
Voters are due to choose a new mayor on May 6.
Seventy four per cent of electors in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough back more devolution from Government to the mayor with health care, housing and schools being the top issues.
Health care, housing and schools are the top issues for voters.
Savanta ComRes interviewed 261 residents of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough aged 18+ online between February 26 and March16.
The data was weighted to be demographically representative of Cambridgeshire by age, gender, sub-region and social grade.
It found just four years after the establishment of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Mayor, almost three quarters (74 per cent) back giving them more powers.
Half of people want the mayor to take more responsibility for providing affordable housing, while 43 per cent want them to provide more direct support to local businesses. Just one in ten (nine per cent) were opposed to any further devolution.
The poll also found there was a high public awareness of the metro mayor. Almost eight in 10 (77 per cent) people polled were aware that this area has a mayor.
Asked about different levels of government and their handling of the pandemic, the public gave the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Mayor a net approval rating (the proportion approving of their handling of the outbreak, minus the proportion disapproving) of +6, double the Government’s (+3). Local councils have a higher approval rating for their handling of the pandemic, at +17.
The public’s top priorities for the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Mayor’s next term are health care provision (53 per cent), housing (40 per cent) and schools (36 per cent).
More than one in four (26 per cent) of voters also cite the environment and air quality as a top issue.
Andrew Carter, chief executive of Centre for Cities, which is dedicated to improving the economic success of UK cities, said: “People in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough city region overwhelmingly support shifting power out of Whitehall and down to the city region. Devolving more responsibility for providing affordable housing, supporting businesses and running adult education schemes are all popular with the public in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough city region.
"At the 2019 election, the Government backed the principle of more devolution in England yet, more than a year later, we are still waiting to see what its plans are.
“As Cambridgeshire and Peterborough city region looks to recover from the pandemic, it is vital that the Government listens to demands for more devolution and gives the next mayor the powers and resources to build back better. People want Whitehall to do less, it’s time for it to listen.”
hall to do less, it’s time for it to listen.”