Ben Houchen

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Ben Houchen
Ben Houchen in York (cropped).jpg
Mayor of the Tees Valley
Assumed office
8 May 2017
Preceded byOffice Created
Personal details
Born9 December 1986
Stockton-on-Tees, England
NationalityBritish
Political partyConservative
Spouse(s)
Rachel Houchen (m. 2011)
Alma materNorthumbria University
WebsiteOfficial website

Ben Houchen (born 9 December 1986) is the Conservative Mayor of the Tees Valley, elected in the May 2017 mayoral election.

Houchen represents the five Tees Valley local authority areas of Middlesbrough, Stockton-on-Tees, Redcar and Cleveland, Hartlepool and Darlington. He also acts as chairman of the Tees Valley Combined Authority, the body that drives economic growth and job creation in the area.[1]

As part of his mayoral campaign, Houchen promised to bring Durham Tees Valley Airport back into public ownership.[2]

Early life[edit]

Born in Stockton-on-Tees, Houchen grew up in one of the first 100 houses on the Ingleby Barwick estate.[3] He attended nearby Conyers School in Yarm before reading law at Northumbria University in Newcastle upon Tyne.[4] As a teenager, he was a member of the Leeds Carnegie and England RFU development squads, however later suffered from three fractured vertebrae which stopped his rugby dreams.[5]

Political career[edit]

Houchen was a councillor on Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council, representing Yarm ward, between 2011 and 2017.[6] In 2012 he stood as the Conservative parliamentary candidate in the Middlesbrough by-election.[7] In the 2014 European Parliament elections, Houchen was the Conservative candidate for the North East region.[8]

Houchen was selected as the Conservative Party candidate for Mayor of the Tees Valley in December 2016.[9]

South Tees Development Corporation[edit]

The South Tees Development Corporation (STDC) is the first Mayoral Development Corporation outside of London.[10] Chaired by Houchen,[11] the STDC area covers approximately 4,500 acres of land to the south of the River Tees, in the Borough of Redcar and Cleveland, and includes former SSI steelworks site as well as other industrial assets. The area includes the deep-water port of Teesport. The STDC aims to create approximately 20,000 new jobs and contribute £1 billion per annum into the UK economy by 2025.[12]

Personal life[edit]

Houchen lives in Yarm with his wife Rachel, a French teacher at Conyers School.[13] He is the nephew of ex-professional footballer Keith Houchen who scored the winning goal for Coventry City in the 1987 FA Cup Final.[14]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "About Us - Tees Valley Combined Authority". Tees Valley Combined Authority. Retrieved 2018-04-12.
  2. ^ "Tees Valley mayor: Conservative Ben Houchen wins". BBC News. 2017-05-05. Retrieved 2017-06-25.
  3. ^ Robson, Dave (2017-05-05). "Who is new Tees mayor Ben Houchen?". gazettelive. Retrieved 2018-04-12.
  4. ^ Robson, Dave (2017-05-05). "Who is new Tees mayor Ben Houchen?". gazettelive. Retrieved 2018-04-12.
  5. ^ Robson, Dave (2017-05-05). "Who is new Tees mayor Ben Houchen?". gazettelive. Retrieved 2018-04-12.
  6. ^ "Stockton Council -". www.egenda.stockton.gov.uk. Retrieved 2018-04-12.
  7. ^ "Labour victory in Middlesbrough". BBC News. 2012-11-30. Retrieved 2018-04-12.
  8. ^ "Wayback Machine" (PDF). 2014-05-03. Retrieved 2018-04-12.
  9. ^ "Ben Houchen chosen to be the Conservative candidate for Mayor of Tees Valley | Conservative Home". Conservative Home. Retrieved 2018-04-12.
  10. ^ "About South Tees Development Corporation - South Tees Development Corporation". South Tees Development Corporation. Retrieved 2018-04-12.
  11. ^ "Tees Valley Mayor & Board | South Tees Development Corporation". South Tees Development Corporation. Retrieved 2018-04-12.
  12. ^ "STDC's Master Plan | South Tees Development Corporation". South Tees Development Corporation. Retrieved 2018-04-12.
  13. ^ "Tees Valley Mayor - Tees Valley Combined Authority". Tees Valley Combined Authority. Retrieved 2018-04-12.
  14. ^ "A sporting family history leading Ben Houchen to success". The Northern Echo. Retrieved 2018-04-12.