Ahead of a visit to the region today, Prime Minister Theresa May has said that the Northern Powerhouse is “critical” to the government’s plans for economic growth to be experienced nationwide.
May’s tour of the North West will see her meet Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham, visit a Liverpool hospital and attend the unveiling of a tribute to PC David Phillips by the Police Memorial Trust.
The Prime Minister, who is due to discuss issues including the integration of health and social care, regional investment and housing with Burnham, said: “The Northern Powerhouse is at the core of our work to spread growth across the entire country.
“Over the past few weeks we have demonstrated how important this agenda is with announcements such as the £400m boost for Northern transport, ensuring we maximise the economic opportunity from HS2 and invest in transport improvements across the whole of the North.
“Over the coming months I will be meeting leaders from across the Northern Powerhouse, starting today in Manchester, to talk about how we can progress this vital agenda.”
An announcement on the progress of the Greater Manchester Housing Deal is expected, an agreement that is on course to be fully agreed early in 2018. The government said this could include new funding for council housing and unlock the housing potential of local transport infrastructure.
May is also expected to announce a £3.8m Greater Manchester Homelessness Prevention Trailblazer fund, following Burnham’s announcement last week on a locally-raised £1.8m bond to tackle homelessness.
The Department for Communities and Local Government and the Greater Manchester Combined Authority will work closely together on this ambitious project, creating common systems, approaches and standards across the area in the coming months.
May said: “This is an important fund which builds on the government’s commitment to tackling homelessness. While our £50m Homelessness Prevention Programme is central to our work in this area, this specific fund will increase a more joined-up approach to tackling the issue across Greater Manchester and we will work closely together to deliver it.”