Sheffield City Region office hires £700-a-day PR man

CITY region mayor Dan Jarvis’ office has defended employing a media advisor on £700 a day.

It emerged this week that the Sheffield City Region’s new interim head of communications Simon Hope is on the huge daily rate — equivalent to £182,000 a year.

The head of communications will report directly to Mr Jarvis (pictured) and managing director Dave Smith, the Advertiser understands, and will earn more than the mayor, who does not receive a salary for the role.

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SCR said Mr Hope had been hired on a temporary basis, adding in a statement: “We are committed to ensuring best value for money. 

“Indeed, a recent survey found that the Sheffield City Region has the lowest staffing budget of all the combined authorities in the UK, despite serving a significantly larger population than regions such as the West of England, Tees Valley, and Cambridgeshire and Peterborough. 

“But we also have a duty to best serve the people of the Sheffield City Region. 

“Therefore, on occasion, it is necessary to recruit experts in the field to support the organisation.

“This is why we have recruited a head of communications, on an interim basis, to support our own staff in engaging with communities within our region and beyond.”