Dan Norris will ‘do both jobs’ as Metro Mayor and MP

Dan Norris (right) with other regional mayors at Downing Street
-Credit: (Image: Crown copyright. Licensed under the Open Government Licence)


On Monday, the 412 Labour MPs elected in last week’s landslide general election met at Church House in Westminster. The morning after, the new Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister met with England’s 12 regional mayors at No. 10. But Keir Starmer and Angela Rayner were not the only people in both meetings.

Dan Norris is now both a Metro Mayor and an MP. After losing his seat to Jacob Rees-Mogg in 2010, Mr Norris spent 11 years away from frontline politics before being elected West of England Metro Mayor in 2021. In last week’s General Election, he ran against Sir Jacob to win back his old seat (now redrawn and renamed North East Somerset and Hanham), winning it by just over 5,000 votes and later stating: “We got Mogg-xit done.”

But this leaves Mr Norris with two major political jobs to do. Now, speaking to ITV News West Country outside No. 10, he has confirmed he will “do both jobs” — at least for the next ten months.

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Before the election, Mr Norris had said he intended to do both jobs if elected. But, yesterday he said: “I now have to get some sleep and then reflect on what has happened and work out how I can best serve the people of North East Somerset and Hanham and the West of England.”

Now he has said he will remain Metro Mayor, at least for the remainder of his term which runs until May 2025, and hinted he was considering running for Metro Mayor again if he found it was possible to do both jobs.

-Credit:Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire
-Credit:Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

He told ITV News West Country: “Until at least next May I will do both jobs. And that makes sense because to call a byelection when you’ve got an electorate of about a million people is a hugely expensive thing, to have an election only to have it a few months later would be nonsensical.

“Also, to allow me to work out how I can do both jobs and whether that’s possible in the longer term and obviously I will be taking soundings. But there’s a lot of precedents in politics. Many MPs are ministers for example. I have done that myself and I think it's very similar to being a regional mayor so I think it's doable.

“But I’m not going to make a decision now. I don’t have to do that. I think it's important to get a real sense of it and make an informed and sensible decision.”

Is it allowed?

MPs are allowed to be Metro Mayors of combined authorities and it has happened before. Dan Jarvis, who has been MP for Barnsley Central and later Barnsley North since 2011, was also the Metro Mayor of South Yorkshire between 2018 and 2022.

If Mr Norris was a local councillor, instead of an MP, however he would be banned from doing the job. Councillors cannot be the Metro Mayor for a combined authority that the council they sit on is a part of.

MPs are banned from being police and crime commissioners. This means they cannot be Metro Mayors in areas where the Metro Mayor has those powers, such as Greater Manchester.

But in the West of England, there is a separate Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Commissioner who covers a wider area than just the West of England. That is currently Labour’s Clare Moody, who ousted Conservative Mark Shelford in May.

‘The ones who know best’

Tuesday’s No. 10 meeting of regional mayors was the first in what has been promised to be regular meetings with England’s regional Mayors.

Mr Norris said: “The Prime Minister meeting regional mayors is a positive example of the new government hitting the ground running.

“I have been delivering on skills, the environment and transport for the last four years, including Birthday Buses to get more residents to use the bus, and look forward to working with a Labour government with the same priorities.”

-Credit:Copyright Unknown
-Credit:Copyright Unknown

Mayors attending the meeting have been asked to draw up “local growth plans” to identify local specialisms to contribute to a national industrial strategy. Mr Norris said the West of England’s local specialisms would include “creative industries.”

Mr Starmer said: “My fundamental belief is that those with skin in the game are the ones who know best what they need. That’s why, for many years I have been in constant dialogue with metro mayors across the country about what works for their areas, and I will continue that now as Prime Minister.”

The West of England Metro Mayor heads the West of England Combined Authority, which includes Bath and North East Somerset Council, Bristol City Council, and South Gloucestershire Council. Mr Norris’s North East Somerset and Hanham constituency straddles both the council areas of Bath and North East Somerset and South Gloucestershire.

The next Metro Mayor election will take place on May 2, 2025.