BARNSLEY Central MP Dan Jarvis will continue to focus on representing his ‘home’ after he announced he won’t stand for re-election as South Yorkshire Mayor next May.

He was elected to the role in May 2018 and has since served unpaid.

In his election manifesto he promised he would not take any salary, instead using it to help charities and good causes.

He became the first South Yorkshire Mayor while remaining as an MP in Barnsley, and he says he did so because the region ‘was not working as it should’.

He celebrated ten years since he was first elected as the MP for Barnsley Central in a by-election earlier this year - and he says he’ll continue to represent the town he is ‘immensely proud of’.

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Dan told the Chronicle that the dual role was only ever a short-term arrangement to get the devolution deal over the line and working for South Yorkshire.

Now this has been achieved Dan feels that it’s the ‘right time’ for someone else to take the region.

The Barnsley Central MP said: “It’s an extraordinary privilege to serve as the first South Yorkshire Mayor.

“I’m very proud of all we have achieved, not least because I’m the only Mayor who inherited a situation where the powers and the money weren’t already in place.

“Despite the relentless pressures, we’ve succeeded in establishing a properly functioning Mayoral Combined Authority that’s been able to unlock hundreds of millions of pounds of investment, that will protect and create thousands of jobs, deliver huge investment in our public transport system, get us on track to be carbon net zero by 2040 at the latest, and much, much more besides.

“I ran for Mayor because I thought delivering a devolution deal for our region was the most important thing I could achieve from opposition.

“When I first stepped forward to take on the role, I took the decision to remain as an MP.

“Some people didn’t agree with that, but I said from the beginning that it wasn’t a long-term arrangement - and I meant it.

“I honestly don’t believe we would have made the progress we have, and we certainly wouldn’t have got the devolution deal over the line if I had not stayed in Westminster.

“The settlement we negotiated helped take us through the worst of the pandemic and is really starting to deliver for people in South Yorkshire.

“We now need someone to build on our achievements and drive us forward over the next four years.

“That person will not be me.

“I won’t be standing as Mayor again next May but in the meantime, I will continue to give 110 per cent to the role.

“While I won’t be running as Mayor, I will be remaining as the MP for Barnsley Central.

“Barnsley is my home, and I’m immensely proud to represent the town.”