Former RIBA President George Ferguson has become Bristol’s first elected mayor
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Although he was initially ranked behind the Labour candidate and odds-on favourite Marvin Rees, it emerged from exit polls that Ferguson was likely to be voted in.
In the end Ferguson received 37,353 votes to Rees’s 31,259 and becomes the first architect to hold a mayoral post.
Ferguson, a former Lib Dem councillor, ran as an independent in a field of 15 candidates with a campaign budget reported as £50,000, half from his own pocket.
Before the election he said Bristol would be used ‘as a test-bed’ for innovations in planning powers, transport, housing and job creation. ‘If these ideas fail they can blame me, if they succeed they can be used in other cities.’
It is understood the Ferguson, who lives in the Urban Splash development The Tobacco Factory, will step down from his practice Ferguson Mann Architects to focus on the role which comes with a recommended salary of £65,738.
George Ferguson elected new Bristol mayor