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Conservative MP Andrew Percy has been appointed as the new Northern Powerhouse minister.

Prime Minister Theresa May appointment Mr Percy to the role over the weekend, replacing Stockton South MP James Wharton who has been given a new job as a minister for the Department for International Development.

The future of the ‘Northern Powerhouse’ was left hanging in the balance following Wharton’s move, but the new Prime Minister signalled her commitment to the flagship scheme and completed her reshuffle by awarding Goole and Brigg MP Andrew Percy the ministerial role. The Northern Powerhouse is a strategy to draw together major cities and towns in England’s industrial heartland to boost economic growth, and the new minister says he relishes such a challenge and is “keen to give my best shot.”

The Goole MP said: “I’ve never chased a Ministerial job, I didn’t in the last Parliament and I didn’t in this one. However, we do live in somewhat bizarre times. I’ve decided to accept this position and, as a proud Northerner, it is one of the few roles in Government I would actually quite relish.

“I hope having served ten years as a local Councillor before becoming an MP, I also have something to contribute on the local government front. I’ve always championed our area as a backbencher and now I get to champion the North within government.

“I am genuinely keen to give this role my best shot. As I watched Theresa speak outside Downing Street and address those families directly who find it hard to get by these days, I actually felt like I had a leader and a Prime Minister who not only spoke for me, but also spoke to my family and the people I grew up with.”

Mr Percy revealed that he celebrated his appointment with a ‘McDonalds’ meal, before settling down with some paperwork as he set about his new role.

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