Published: 9th Dec 2014

The telling moment for me as far as localism was concerned for 2014 was the dog’s breakfast the Home Office made of finding someone to lead the historic abuse inquiry who did not know some of the various people entangled in its many tentacles. After the second resignation, I listened to an edition of the Today programme including the historian Juliet Gardiner, talking about the establishment.  It is difficult to find members of this august body who don’t move in interlocking circles, she said. What they really need, as she put it, is a solicitor from Redditch. This explains something about way that the UK has always been over-centralised.  It is because the establishment tends to live in London, with perhaps the occasional weekend retreat in the home counties and perhaps a summer house in Italy. The devolution of power to Scotland and Wales has tackled that problem to some … (To read the full article, subscribe below)