I believe that my experience and my commitment to our city, my values of fairness and openness enable me to bring together all our communities to take Leicester from strength to strength.

I am the only candidate with eight years experience of running Leicester as a unitary authority. I led a team of Labour councillors to deliver real change and improvement. No other candidate has my track record of delivering for our city. From City Wardens and Clean Up Team to the huge regeneration of CURVE and Highcross, creating thousands of jobs for local people. These are just some of the things I have helped to deliver with the Labour team.

I successfully led the Labour Group for 12 years and working together we stayed focussed on improving the city. Remember the elected mayor will have to work with the majority group on the council to deliver their budget. It was a great privilege to serve as Leader of the Council and I look forward to doing my best to serve the people as Leicester’s first elected mayor. I have no other commitments that will get in the way and can promise to work hard and full time from the day I am selected to run for Mayor. This will be my role from day one.

See my pledges for what I would do if I was Mayor of Leicester

As your elected Mayor I will make a real difference

I believe an elected mayor for Leicester is better than the current system. The mayor will be elected directly by the people and will be a stronger voice for the city and all its people. My experience means that I know what holds decisions up and what could be improved. My ‘inside knowledge’ has shown mean how as mayor I would do things differently and better.

Raising our Game

The profile the city will get with an elected mayor will raise our game in many ways. We will have a distinct advantage over our neighbours in discussion with Government. As mayor I would have the backing of the people to speak on behalf of the city. It would make Leicester unique in the Midlands no other city leader would have the influence that the Mayor of Leicester would have.

This has never been more important with a Tory Lib Dem government slashing funding to local councils. We need a strong local voice to speak up for Leicester.


The city council has a big impact on the day to day lives of everyone in the city and it will be clear, with an elected mayor, who is running the council. As mayor I will be able to be open and transparent, making political appointments on merit, and able to get on with the programme for the city.

Attract Investment & jobs into Leicester

As elected mayor I can speak up for the much needed investment in our city giving us a big advantage. Many people have said to me that I would have their backing because I have shown that I can work to bring investment and jobs into the city and that as mayor I could do even more. Most cities and towns across the rest of the world have elected mayors, there is a great deal of evidence that it has worked well.

Breathe new life into politics

An elected mayor will breathe new life into politics in Leicester getting more people interested. This is what has happened in many other places. The work that ward councillors do can be properly recognised and supported. It’s good for democracy.

Costs and the role of Lord Mayor

Practically speaking, the decision of the Labour Group on the council to move to the mayoral system means that the election will be on the 5th May the same day as the council elections. This could save the taxpayer £184,000. Going for a referendum will cost twice this amount and result in a whole year where there is no effective leadership of the city. There is no reason why an elected mayor need cost any more than the current system, The Lord Mayor plays an important and historic role in Leicester so and it would be my intention to keep our Lord Mayor.

A inclusive city

I believe that Leicester is a city where all communities live together in harmony. ONE Leicester is already real for many people, but not all and I will work to ensure everyone feels that Leicester is their city. Ross is receiving a cheque from the Muslim community in the city to help the victims of the flooding in Gloucestershire.


If I am successful in becoming Leicester’s first elected Mayor I will work with all the communities in our city. I will do my best for everyone and promise that when things can’t be done I will always explain why.

I am making some general pledges at this stage until the Labour Manifesto for the local council elections is agreed. I will want to work with colleagues in the Party, partners and local people to develop a manifesto that will make a real difference and raise Leicester’s game.

We face difficult challenges with a Conservative/Lib dem government that is cutting huge amounts of money from our budgets. These are cuts are too much too fast and will cost the city in jobs and services.

The Council employs many thousands of committed hard working staff and it is totally wrong that this government has launched an attack on public sector staff. I have been a trade unionist all my life, active in the miners strikes of the 1980’s and have sought to protect jobs and services as a councillor. I will continue to fight for council staff and against job cuts.

As Mayor I would take Leicester’s case to government and make sure that ministers understand the impact of what they are doing and urge them to re-think.

If elected as Leicester’s Mayor I will:

  • Serve all the people of the city
  • Stand up for Leicester and its people, fight unfair cuts from government
  • Bring jobs to the city through further investment, as Mayor acting as ambassador and leading on negotiations, support local businesses to prosper and grow
  • Make Leicester a fairer city, working to introduce a living wage The Living Wage Campaignwww.citizensuk.org/campaigns/living-wage-campaign calls for every worker in the country to earn enough to provide their family with the essentials of life.
  • Champion green energy and sustainable development
  • See that Leicester gets its fair share of regional and national funding
  • Continue to improve our children’s future through better schools
  • Improved care for the elderly and vulnerable, through extra care housing, services for people with disabilities and learning difficulties
  • Improve leisure centres, parks, museums and protect our old and much loved historic buildings, through bringing them back into use, keep our festivals and DeMontfort Hall. Deliver a new gallery for the city
  • Work for more effective policing in your neighbourhood, as Mayor acting as your voice and speaking directly with the Chief Constable
  • Bring forward new housing for the city, 10,000 people are waiting for a home, bring back into use empty homes.
  • Visit and meet local communities, taking up your concerns and cutting through red tape to get things done
  • set up a Mayor’s Fund giving people a voice in how it is spent
  • Want to see a strong vibrant and community and voluntary sector representative of all faiths and communities
  • We have done well with the cleaner city team, as Mayor I want to do more to keep our streets clean and safe. I would look at extending the Team to outer estates.
  • Work with you to provide things for young people to do
  • Take our plans for a tram to government and argue for funding. Hold discussions with the bus companies about improving services
  • As Mayor I would strengthen the role ward councillors and ensure that they have a strong voice in shaping what happens, through an increased say in budgets and local matters, as well as stronger scrutiny
  • I will keep Council Tax low and work hard to provide value for money

Ross led the development of the Labour Party’s 2007 Manifesto and wrote the 7 pledges which are nearly all delivered.

Let me know what you think I should do for the city if I were your Mayor.

It’s important that young people vote, says Ross

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