David Skaith: Profile of the first directly elected mayor for York and North Yorkshire

David Skaith, the first ever York and North Yorkshire mayor. Credit: PA

A businessman who admitted he had "no political experience" has made history after becoming the first directly elected mayor for York and North Yorkshire.

Labour's David Skaith won 66,671 votes – just over a third of the 191,279 votes cast – defeating Conservative candidate Keane Duncan.

It follows the creation of the York and North Yorkshire combined authority.

As mayor, Mr Skaith will be paid £81,300 a year and will have power over decisions on issues including public transport, housing and adult education.

But what do we know about David Skaith?

The 35-year-old was born and raised in Harrogate, where his brother is a police officer. He joined the Labour party in 2015.

A keen cricketer, he went on to study sport at York St John University.

What were David Skaith's campaign pledges?

Mr Skaith promised to deliver a cost of living recovery plan.

He said he would fight for more GP and dentist appointments and tackle crime and antisocial behaviour

He also pledged to connect communities with a new transport system.

He moved to Brighton after university, before returning to North Yorkshire to start menswear store Winston's of York, which he has run for nearly a decade.

He said he would draw on his "business experience" in his new role.

"I am here to work for York and North Yorkshire," he said. "We want change. We want people coming in to politics and not necessarily from traditional backgrounds I am a small business owner with a young family and I will be using that."

Mr Skaith said he decided to get involved in politics after his father died during the Covid pandemic.

"I want to grow this region. It's about the people and communities here," he said.

"It's about York and North Yorkshire and putting those places on the map."

Mr Skaith is married and lives just outside York, with his wife Alice and two children, who he says he wants to "grow up in a North Yorkshire that is full of opportunity".

Promising to champion the region, he said he will bring a host of benefits to hundreds of thousands of residents and businesses.

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