Taking back control in Plymouth | Pamela Buchan

The local elections are fast approaching across the UK and Plymouth City Council is one of two key targets for Labour outside of London. Only two seats are required to take control back from the Conservatives in this historic coastal city. Since its formation as a unitary authority in 1998, control has swung between Labour…

Country Tour – Day 3 – The North

A cool grey morning in the Midlands soon gives way to the sunny uplands of the Peak District as we head north to meet Caitlin Bisknell, PPC for High Peak, and her team. The rolling hills stretch out in every direction, occasionally interrupted by an aggregates quarry, a bright beacon on human industrial endeavour in…

The A303: The Chancellor’s road to the few

One of the common challenges of living on the coast, or in the country, is the smaller size of the local economy. That can be partly a question of the nature of the land, or sea, and partly the smaller population of people to participate in that economy, as producers, sellers or buyers. Anything that…

Off the Beaten Tracks

A recent study by Labour has warned that more than 30 million miles of bus journeys have been lost to cuts, leaving many people and communities isolated. And it is Britain’s rural areas that are hit worst. The Labour frontbench’s excellent new shadow secretary of state for transport, Michael Dugher, claims that vital rural routes…

Devolution should include Town and Parish . . . . Conference Diary

The conference fringe is as varied and diverse as the issues that face coast and country communities.  This year with the Scottish vote the question of who decides what emerges in most fringe event discussions, be that the value of community pubs, the choice of the second runway or how to deliver new housing. Two reoccurring…

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…

Towards a More Resilient, SME Friendly Rural Economy

As a One Nation Labour Party we need to expand our horizons beyond haphazard thinking on rural issues in order to secure a sustainable economy for Britain’s countryside and reach out to the rural electorate. What must be recognised is that rural areas are subject to an intrinsic ‘separation’, a root cause of so many…