A CANDIDATE standing for leadership of the Conservative Party has given his support to a new campaign aimed at bringing new investment to the region.

Home Secretary Sajid Javid said he will "reinvigorate the Northern Powerhouse" if he is elected as party leader and ultimately Prime Minister.

The Northern Echo:

Earlier this week, The Northern Echo joined forces with rival publishers to challenge political parties to commit to a package of policy measures to turbo-charge the North’s economy.

The demands on the Government include a new Industrial Strategy, an overhaul of the region’s road and rail network, additional investment for schools, and a programme to build a new generation of social housing.

Mr Javid said: "The campaigning newspapers of the North made one combined call to a Westminster that can seem out of touch and remote, to power up the North.

"I hear you, and if I am Prime Minister, I will.

"I want to promise you that as Prime Minister I'll reinvigorate the Northern Powerhouse, and supercharge growth outside the capital."

The Northern Echo:

Richmond MP Rishi Sunak also said he was supportive of the campaign.

"As someone who worked in business around the world before entering politics, I know the value of a balanced economy. The prosperity and growth that has powered London and South-East needs to be spread across the UK and Government has an important role to play in helping that happen.

"The Government's commitment to the Northern Powerhouse was underlined only last week by Northern Powerhouse Minister Jake Berry being appointed to a broadened ministerial role.

"Working between the Ministry of Housing Communities & Local Government and Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy, Jake's oversight and coordination of local economic growth will be significantly boosted to improve its effectiveness."

The Northern Echo:

Darlington MP Jenny Chapman added: "The Power Up The North campaign comes at an important moment because the North can no longer wait for this tired Government to fix major issues from transport to broadband.

"I support this joint effort and hope the Government will listen."