Meet the Metro Mayor at Voscur’s Connecting Communities event

Metro Mayor of WECA, Tim Bowles, seen with map graphic of WECA areas
Image Credit: 
Metro Mayor photo by WECA; WECA map image by MrPenguin20 via Wikimedia Commons CC BY-SA 4.0
11 September, 2018


Tim Bowles, the Metro Mayor for the West of England Combined Authority, will host an event on 16 October to meet local people from VCSE organisations. Connecting Communities and the Metro Mayor will take place from 1:00pm – 2:30pm at Lockleaze Hub, Gainsborough Square (with registration at 12:30pm).

This event is the perfect opportunity to showcase Bristol’s VCSE sector, and talk about the work you do. Speakers from several VCSE organisations, such as Hartcliffe and Withywood Community Partnership, will talk in depth about their work. What’s more, if you’re a Voscur member, you can even book priority tickets before anyone else.

What is the Metro Mayor’s Connection to VCSE Organisations?

Bowles was one of six Metro Mayors elected across England in May 2017 (Greater Manchester and Tees Valley were two of the other locations), with each granted a 30-year investment fund but a unique set of budgeting and planning responsibilities.

Some residents across England aren’t sure what a Metro Mayor’s role should be, and how it stands apart from the role of city mayor. Meeting him in person will help clarify this for you and your organisation’s users.

As Metro Mayor for the West of England Combined Authority (WECA), Bowles has a £900m budget which covers Bristol, Bath, South Gloucestershire, North East Somerset and South Gloucestershire council areas. Earlier this month he met representatives from charities and VCSE organisations in Bath to discuss how third sector organisations can be helped by WECA; now it’s Bristol’s turn. A panel discussion during the event will incorporate audience questions about WECA’s strategies and priorities in line with the third sector.

The Metro Mayor’s main focus areas are business and trade, higher education and skills, planning, and transport. This has led to schemes such as:

  • A 5G trial for Bristol and Bath, exploring how the area could become a ‘smart region’ for personal and business technology and promote Smart Tourism. 5G has been trialled at key sites like the M Shed, We the Curious, and the Roman Baths in Bath, helped by technology experts at the University of Bristol’s Smart Technology Lab.
  • The Future Bright skills programme, a £4 million scheme that could potentially help over 3,000 adults – job seekers, employees and employers – improve their skillset and wellbeing. For employers, there is also a strong emphasis on employee engagement. Each council in WECA, including Bristol City Council, runs its own Future Bright scheme with local employers, landlords and housing associations and will introduce individuals to career progression coaches.

How to Meet the Metro Mayor of WECA

To attend Connecting Communities and the Metro Mayor, you must register for a ticket - click here. Voscur members can take advantage of our early bird ticketing offer, giving you priority access to tickets from Wednesday 12 September 2018. Booking will then open for non-members on Thursday 27 September 2018. To become a Voscur member and receive discounts for all Voscur-led events and many other benefits, click here

Places are limited and we expect this to be a popular event, so don’t leave it too late to register.

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