COMMUNITIES Secretary James Brokenshire has today thrown out devolution plans proposed by 18 town hall leaders across Yorkshire.

Authority bosses including Bradford Council leader Councillor Susan Hinchcliffe, called on the Government to work with them to deliver a ‘One Yorkshire’ deal.

They said the move could give a £30 billion-a-year boost to the region and the UK, but the plans have suffered a major setback because the government believes the plans do not meet their criteria for devolution.

The plan would see powers and funding handed to a region-wide mayor, however, a letter penned by Mr Brokenshire outlines why the proposals have not been accepted.

He said: "It would involve significant depatures from the type of devolution deals that we have successfully put in place elsewhere in terms of geography, governance and purpose.

"The mayoralty would cover the whole of Yorkshire - with a population of 5.5 million people and widely varying rural and urban areas with competing needs.

"Accordingly, the Government considers that the One Yorkshire devolution proposals do not meet out criteria for devolution."

A statement on behalf of the One Yorkshire Leaders said: "We are disappointed by the Secretary of State's response which exhibits a misunderstanding of the strength of our One Yorkshire proposals which build on a shared identity and an established global brand.

“His letter also fails to recognise the considerable work of the great partnership we have developed, cross-party, to develop ambitious plans which we calculate would add £30bn to the economy and bring the benefits of devolution to a region of five million people.

“We were told by Government to come up with devolution proposals which enjoy widespread support. In the One Yorkshire devolution proposals we have a deliverable plan backed by 18 authorities, the Sheffield City Region Mayor, business and trade unions.

“In response, the Secretary of State is now advocating solutions that his own Government has previously rejected. We are requesting an urgent meeting, face to face, to discuss the way forward.”

The decision has been met with disappointment from Batley and Spen MP, Tracy Brabin, who says the area is being neglected.

She said: "Not only is the Tory Government unwilling to tackle growing inequality and the ever-widening north/south divide, it’s now abundantly clear they are unwilling to give us the powers to do it for ourselves.

“Yorkshire is undoubtedly a wonderful place to live full of amazing people – but we are suffering after year of neglect and underinvestment.  

“One Yorkshire was a huge opportunity to change this. An opportunity to hand back powers to communities to shape the way services are provided.

“This decision shows that the Government has no real intention of devolving powers and giving communities the chance to shape their own future.”