Keeping Seaside Blues at Bay | Lord Bassam

The House of Lords report on ‘The Future of Seaside Towns’ published 18 months ago seems almost as relevant today as it did then. Much has happened in the intervening period. The Government announcement launching the Town Deals Fund in July 2019 with a 101 places invited to apply for up to £26m being a…

Building Back Better on the Coast and in the Country | Alex Mayer

This weekend will be the first ‘first weekend of September’ in many years when I will not be in the pretty Norfolk village of Burston. This important date in the calendar for those of us in the Labour and trade union movement in East Anglia, counters the idea that our radical past was only based…

Please don’t forget rural England! Has your CLP submitted a response to the NPF yet?

As we all know the National Policy Forum (NPF) is a key element of Labour’s policy making process and we would encourage every coastal and rural CLP to make a submission to the current consultations, deadline 30th June, even if it is simply to say: ‘Dear NPF, please don’t forget more people live in rural England than…

Labour’s Offer to Communities of the Coast and the Country | Hywel Lloyd

After almost a decade of Tory led governments vast swathes of countryside communities have been let down if not closed down.  There are still too many not-spots for mobile reception, too many places without decent broadband, places where you can’t get to stay and live locally in a home to own or rent; while the…

The Future of Seaside Towns | Lord Bassam

The Lords Select Committee on ‘The Future of Seaside Towns’ paints a familiar picture of what can happen to communities that get left behind in a two speed economy. Many of us watched in the 80’s as the Thatcher government ruthlessly deconstructed the industrial economy through a mix of privatisation, state disinvestment and plant closures.…

Reflections on GE2017 | Nia Griffith MP

Amongst Labour’s impressive gains in last June’s general election were a number of rural and coastal constituencies. David Drew re-took Stroud and is now serving as a Shadow DEFRA Minister, and my good friend Tonia Antoniazzi won the Gower constituency back for Labour. Not only does this bring us closer to delivering a Labour government…

Labour’s Coastal Consultation | Alex Mayer MEP

There are few more quintessentially English postcard images than deckchairs lining a sandy beach with a pier in the background. I am lucky that in my constituency there are many fantastic coastal towns that attract thousands of visitors on holiday. But for years now they have been faced with a real and growing set of…

The ‘Talk of the Town’ . . .

The recent Demos Report “Talk of the Town” seeks to highlight the very different “performance” of towns from their neighbouring cities. It has selected a range of measures through which to compare aspects positive and negative, to some extent social but more economic, through which to suggest how well each community is faring. I am not competent…

What does Labour need to do to win the rural vote?

How will Labour win the rural vote? I’ll some it up in three words: policy, process, and people! People with passion for the rural, for the countryside and coastal communities which help define this island nation. But first of all, we must be clear on what we mean by the “rural vote”. That really matters!…

Tory bribery and publicity stunts in coast and country areas increase as the General Election looms

The cynicism of politics was manifest last week with the descent on Eastbourne of both Cameron and Osborne, bearing a £2m handout for the restoration of the burnt-out – and insured – pier. Here is a LibDem marginal target for Tory take-over next year being handed largesse by people who have hitherto shown no interest in the…