GREEN Party members have voiced their support for a regional assembly.

They were attending the launch – at Bishopthorpe Palace, York – of a One Yorkshire coalition.

Among those present was the party’s former leader, Natalie Bennett.

She said: “Genuine devolution, of power and resources, lies at the heart of Green political philosophy.

“Power in the UK is highly concentrated in Westminster, with greatly damaging effects on our society.

“The desire expressed by many voters in the 2016 Brexit referendum to ‘take back control’ was understandable and right. But rather than the lack of control being a result of membership of the European Union, one of our chief problems lies in that lack of local power and autonomy – which Yorkshire devolution would address.

“The Green Party, however, differs from other members of the One Yorkshire coalition in supporting not one single individual as a focus of devolution, but rather a powerful regional assembly on a model resembling that of the Welsh Assembly.

“To put all devolved power in the hands of a single mayor would have a damaging impact on Yorkshire.

“With the county’s diverse political cultures and views, the people of Yorkshire would be far better represented by a range of parties and individuals than could ever be achieved by a single person."

Colleague Tom Franklin said Yorkshire had a strong identity and decisions should be made locally.

He added: “Yorkshire has about the population of Scotland – it needs to have the opportunity to make cohesive, co-ordinated plans for public transport, education and other key areas.”