1. ITV Report

Redcar MP calls Tees Valley job advert "sick joke"

Tees Valley Mayor, Ben Houchen and Redcar MP Anna Turley Photo:

Redcar MP Anna Turley has criticised a new London-based government post on the SSI site regeneration on Teesside, calling it a "sick joke’".

The Government is recruiting for a ‘Project Lead for the Tees Valley's Mayoral Development Corporation’.

The official advert Credit: Department for Communities and Local Government

According to the job advert, ‘the key focus of this role will be to set the direction for, and deliver, a new Mayoral Development Corporation covering the former SSI site.’ It says the job will be London based and ‘can include occasional trips to Tees Valley’.

Anna Turley MP has said there are "a lot of talented people in our region".

Tees Valley Mayor, Ben Houchen, has responded to the comments saying "It’s extremely concerning that the Kent-born MP Redcar is trying to jump on the wording of a standard Civil Service job advert." He added that it is not a local appointment.

“This job will be a leading position overseeing the regeneration of the steelworks site. A big challenge that is crucial to bringing decent jobs to our area. Why on earth, then, is it based in London? With only occasional trips to Teesside? Its a sick joke when this site, and thousands of jobs, could have been saved if central government ministers and civil servants had acted in the first place.

“We have a lot of talented people in our region with the knowledge and experience to take on a role like this. It makes me mad that so few of these posts are based outside of London.

“The people working on this project need to be here on the ground, not hidden away in an office in Whitehall. So much for devolution. The Tees Valley Mayor should immediately take this up with his colleagues in government.”

– Redcar MP Anna Turley

Tees Valley Mayor, ben Houchen released this statement:

“This not a local appointment. This is a Civil Service position advertised by the Department for Communities and Local Government. I will always welcome additional dedicated staff in the heart of Government working to transform the former SSI steelworks site.

“The Government is throwing more time, money and resources on the most significant economic opportunity for Redcar in decades. This follows a number of secondments from Government, where they have already sent full-time staff to the Tees Valley to focus exclusively on this project. This is in addition to our own plans to recruit local staff internally, within the Mayoral Development Corporation.

“It’s extremely concerning that the Kent-born MP Redcar is trying to jump on the wording of a standard Civil Service job advert. It is even more worrying that she is so ignorant of the facts on the ground. It must be a real concern to the people of Redcar that their MP is so out of touch on our exciting plans for the old SSI site.”

– Tees Valley Mayor, Ben Houchen