Big challenges, but we can still look forward

There’s no doubt that 2016 will be another busy and exciting year.

There are some big challenges as the amount of money the council receives from the Government continues to drop, while demand for many services, especially health and social care, is increasing.

That being said, I’m confident that by working with our residents we can meet these challenges and focus on a bright future.

There will be plenty of developments to look forward to, especially our exciting multi-million regeneration work at the coast, the Spanish City, Wallsend and the Swans’ site.

Much needed affordable housing is being built in Wallsend, The Forum is being completely refurbished, work on the Aldi supermarket and Burger King has started, the parks have been beautifully restored, and a £100m investment scheme to bring jobs and investment to the Swans’ site is making tremendous progress.

I’m also delighted that the promises we made to deliver top quality retirement apartments for 900 residents and provide 3,000 new affordable homes for families by 2025 are well under way..

When I was elected Mayor I promised that I would always listen to what you have to say. I hope you will give your views on local issues, including the budget consultation, Local Plan and the referendum on how the authority should be governed. All information can be found online at