Going ooop North
Westminster is falling down. So The Honourable Gentlemen and the noble peers will have to decamp. And, of course, so will the whole circus of civil servants, advisers, lobbyists and general liggers.
One suggestion is to move them all onto a boat on the Thames, although no one has yet suggested a hot air balloon.
But I have another idea. Why not move the whole shebang ooop North. Say, Manchester, ‘ull, or Newcastle.
But, I hear the circus caterwaul; you cannot disturb people’s lives like that. Well, according to the House of Commons Select Committee, the reconstruction of Westminster is going to take 32 years. So, a young civil servant coming down, as they do, from Oxford or Cambridge, could just be nudging retirement (allowing for the usual over-runs) when he or she goes ooop North.
The reconstruction would cost £5.7 billion, which would be just the kick-start the Northern economy needs. It would take pressure off house prices in London and the South East.
It would also stop the brain drain to the South – in the last 10 years about 75,000 graduates packed their bags and headed South, according to a recent poll.
But here’s the scary bit: the government has allocated £1.8 billion of funding for the regions, (that’s £30 for every woman, child and man (note the political correctness). But, three out of ten graduates don’t know what the Northern Powerhouse is. Indeed, two out five adults in the North of England have never heard of it.
But when the noble peers and MPs decamp there, they’ll know all about it and will also find out that the Northern Powerhouse is not a new electricity generating station.
Have a good weekend,
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