A former Labour councillor has quit the party to back new political party Yorkshire First.

Colne Valley activist Paul Salveson, who represented the Golcar ward, is supporting the group’s campaign for regional assemblies and a ‘more democratic and socially just Britain.’

Mr Salveson now wants an ‘active role’ as a member within the political group and could make a decision on whether he will stand again as a candidate in next year’s elections within the next few weeks.

The decision comes almost a year after he resigned his role as Golcar ward councillor due to increasing demands from other interests, which included becoming the general secretary for the campaign for northern devolution, the Hannah Mitchell Foundation.

He said that he had become disillusioned with the Labour Party’s culture, lack of willingness to seriously consider the case for regional devolution and ‘inability to work with other parties’.

Mr Salveson said: “It wasn’t a quick decision to make but seeing the vitality in Scotland confirmed that it was the right choice to make.

 

“This is a permanent decision and I hope to remain good friends with Labour colleagues and I hope that people in the party understand my decision to leave.

“There are some great members in it, like Linda Riordan and individuals in the Colne Valley and Huddersfield, but the culture is very centralised and I think that the party will needs to address the regional devolution question and I hope that parties like Yorkshire First will push them to take it much more seriously.

“I’m looking at a range of different roles within Yorkshire First but it will be a decision I make after talking with friends. There may well be an announcement on whether I will stand in the next few weeks.”

He added: “We’re not talking about independence, we just want a regional assembly so we can tackle important issues with comparable powers to those given to Wales or Scotland.

“What we want isn’t about regionalist nationalism; it’s about gaining greater democracy and fairness that will benefit everyone living here, not just some and I think Yorkshire First provides a socially progressive alternative vision to parties like UKIP.”

He also said that he has total confidence in Yorkshire First’s founder, Richard Carter, a former Holmfirth businessman who in fact lives in Norway and works in Germany.

He said: “I think it’s great Richard’s aware of what’s going on elsewhere in the world, he sees how things are done in other countries and you couldn’t get more Yorkshire than him.

“I think it’s very early days for Yorkshire First but people are rapidly becoming more receptive to our ideas. The only way forward for our country is to go down the federalist route like Germany and other European countries.”

Question -1 of 20 Score -0 of 0
Which of these is the largest city in Yorkshire?