West of England Mayor Tim Bowles will not be seeking re-election in May and will be retiring from politics once his term in office comes to an end.

Councillor Toby Savage, Leader of South Gloucestershire and Deputy Mayor of the West of England Combined Authority, said: “The impact that Tim has had as the inaugural West of England Mayor, building the Combined Authority from scratch and bringing together the local authorities, both across geographical and political borders, has set our region on a truly positive path.

“His leadership has helped to provide funding for many initiatives across South Gloucestershire, including support with our local economy, with the emerging regeneration of Kingswood High Street and the restoration of the Whitfield Tabernacle, giving people better skills, employment and training opportunities through FutureBright and the under-construction Brunel Centre at the SGS Wise Campus, and improved transport infrastructure with the new Yate Park and Ride, a rebuilt rail bridge on Gipsy Patch Lane and improvements underway at Wraxall Road and Great Stoke Roundabouts.”

“Given all he has been able to achieve in such a short space of time, it is a great shame that Tim has decided not to contest the election next year and want to thank him for all he has done over a number of years putting the needs of local residents first.”