A LOCAL authority has revealed its gender pay gap figures are ahead of the national average of 17.1 per cent.

North Yorkshire County Council said it had managed to reduce the gender pay gap from 12.1 per cent to 10.9 per cent over the course of a year.

The council said it had adopted an "robust approach" to equal pay, including a pledge to close in on its gender pay gap last year.

County councillor Gareth Dadd at North Yorkshire County Council said: “We continue to make good progress and expect the next set of figures to show further steady improvement.

"But we must and will do more.

"We need the best people to run our services and to ensure we find them we must be sure that we are creating a level playing field to attract more women into our top-tier posts.”

The council claimed its remaining gender pay gap figures were partially the result of lost employment when women take maternity leave, and because "lower graded" roles such as cleaners, caterers and those in a care roles, were traditionally part-time and filled by women.

Cllr Dadd added: “There is no quick fix to reducing the gender pay gap.

"But we have a systemic approach to promoting equality and inclusion, which we are confident will result in a steady narrowing of the gap and women achieving their full potential within the authority.”

The council said it was encouraging more female applicants into "traditionally male-dominated sectors," which it described as roles within the highways and engineering, whilst it said it was attracting more men into carer posts.