A Newcastle-based businessman who had considered standing for election as North of Tyne Mayor has withdrawn his candidacy to support fellow independent, John McCabe.
John Courtney, founder of Maintenance Network Limited, had planned to run as an independent.
However, after the two candidates met to discuss their policies and vision for the role, he decided to withdraw and place his full support behind Mr McCabe.
John Courtney said: “John and I met recently and we had a very frank, detailed exchange of views on policies. Our conversation confirmed to us both that we were standing for much the same thing so having reflected and carefully considered my position, I have decided to withdraw and offer my full support to John McCabe.
“I sense so many people are angry with politicians acting in their own self-interest so it’s important that in this election, we have a clear, independent alternative. John will make an exceptional North of Tyne Mayor.”