Solace Masterclass - Devolution and Combined Authorities


15 Jul 2015


Eversheds Offices
Bridgewater Place, Water Lane
LS11 5QT



Hosted by
Eversheds Logo


Devolution is high on the agenda following the election. The purpose of this Masterclass was to share knowledge and understanding of the priorities for Core and Key Cities and how to work together to maximise opportunities. The event was a catalyst for establishing a network of people who can contribute to the ongoing devolution agenda and make it happen! 


To download the presentations please click on the relevant name:

Frances Woodhead
Andrew Lightfoot
John Tradewell
Bob Pritchard


Arrival and tea/coffee


Chair’s welcome and introduction to the Masterclass
Chair: Frances Woodhead, Partner, Eversheds


Tom Riordan

Northern Powerhouse – the perspective from Leeds and beyond 
The West Yorkshire Combined Authority and the Leeds City Region Local Enterprise Partnership are driving economic growth across the area, bringing together partners and key decision-making powers to tackle shared economic challenges, including improving transport, boosting jobs and growth. We will explore how the partnerships between councils, combined authorities and local enterprise partnerships are developing in this area to ensure strong working relationships across politicians and senior managers; including key steps, lessons learned and hopes for the future.
Speaker: Tom Riordan, Chief Executive, Leeds City Council


Frances Woodhead

Robert Pritchard

Devolution: Partnership working
This session will

  • hear a Director from Manchester’s experience of working in partnership as a Combined Authority
  • explore the implications of the new Devolution Bill and
  • present Evershed’s perspective on city regional planning - how spatial planning and a civic enterprise approach to partnerships can be used effectively.

Speakers: Andrew Lightfoot, Director of Public Service Reform, Greater Manchester Combined Authority,
Robert Pritchard, Principal Associate, Eversheds and
Frances Woodhead, Partner, Eversheds and Head of Local Government


Refreshment Break


John Tradewell


Devolution – a non-metro perspective 
How do you respond to the prospect of devolution when a 'simple' combined authority is not the obvious step? Staffordshire has a complicated political and economic geography and a track record of delivery.  An insight into how you make this work and plans for the future.  A practical insight into how you build trust and relationships amongst leaders and chief executives over time to lay the foundations for devolution and why this is so important. 
Speakers: John Tradewell, Director of Democracy, law and Transformation, Staffordshire County Council 


Panel Session: Devolution - Questions and Discussion

Sarah Pearson, Service Director of Economic Growth and HousingWakefield Council.
Wakefield is one of the key cities group and has been identified as the fastest growing economy in the Leeds City Region in recent years. Making decisions and having powers locally is key to delivering the jobs and growth Wakefield and other cities need. Sarah will start the session talking about her experiences from a key city perspective.
John Tradewell, Acting Chief Executive of Staffordshire County Council
Robert Pritchard, Principal Associate, Eversheds
Chair: Frances Woodhead, Partner, Eversheds 


Chair’s Summary


Masterclass Ends with lunch