Britain is going through a difficult time, when its sustained ability to punch above its weight, economically and diplomatically, is ebbing. The end of irrational exuberance found the country ill at ease with itself, with rising inequalities and unhealthy nationalism, just when it needs to be fleet-footed in recognising that many of the traditional pillars of its strengths have changed. The need is to recognise other supports and partners and find a new common purpose after the pandemic. I live in hope.

longingly looking at london

Londoners get £69 each spent on the arts, whereas up 'ere it's just £4.60. On transport, it's £2,731 a head against £134. Is this just chip on the shoulder stuff ? Probably not, I argue in my latest newspaper blog and we need to use it to hang onto the capital's coattails and make sure we're in the market for powers coming down the line to london's mayor. It's also on the platform.

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