Jeremy Corbyn calls for investment in South East England

The Guardian has the story on its web site – see link above

The South East of England is not the first place you think of when you look for areas of the UK that need investment. Indeed, to those of us living outside of the economically overheated South East this call for investment there must lead to a lot of head scratching.

Is there going to be a South East equivalent of the Northern Powerhouse under Jeremy’s proposals? Now don’t get me wrong there are run down parts of the South East particularly former high flying seaside towns but are they any different to such towns across England?

Mersey Gateway Bridge – Progress but no mention of Northern Poorhouse!

The Liverpool Echo has the story on its web site – see link above

This is an amazing engineering project and it’s happening in ‘the north’, so show come no one name dropped the Northern Powerhouse in this article? I thought every media outlet had to name drop it or face the wrath of George Osborne. Oh hang on he’s bitten the dust hasn’t he.

BTW is it just me or is the Echo web site struggling? It seems to freeze up all the time – time for an upgrade?

Merseyside Metro Mayor – What is it with Labour’s attachment to a Tory spin policy?

I am no Labour supporter (I’m actually backing Cllr. Carl Cashman’s campaign to be selected as the Lib Dem candidate for Merseyside Metro Mayor) but have to say that there must surely be a huge collective sigh of relief across Merseyside that Joe Anderson has not selected as the Labour candidate.

But why is Steve Rotherham MP, who will be Labour’s candidate, backing the Northern Poorhouse policy of George Osborne? Is he another Labour politician who has not realised that the Northern Powerhouse is just Tory spin?

I have commented before on Labour’s odd attachment to the previous Tory Chancellor’s Northern Powerhouse policy. Interestingly, both Steve Rotherham (a Corbyn backer) and his Labour counterpart for the Manchester Metro Mayor Andy Burnham (very much not a Corbynite) are both backing this Tory policy that many of us have seen through a long time ago.

It never ceases to amaze me how close the Tories and Labour really are. Yes I know that my lot had 5 years in coalition with the Tories nationally but I am talking of the unstated but trackable Tory/Labour collaboration going back years here on Merseyside.

Oh Mr Burnham did you really think the Northern Poorhouse was anything more than spin?

I am not known for my support of Andy Burnham but this piece in the Echo really does make me wonder how he and indeed other Labour worthies ever came to the conclusion that George Osborne’s Northern Powerhouse was anything more than party political froth.

Talked about for a handful of years what on earth has been delivered for the ‘North’ that would not have happened anyway? Any medium to large project you can think of has been linked to the Northern Powerhouse in recent times and just about every council policy document you look at name drops it. But that does not mean that things have been achieved because of what some now refer to as the Northern ‘Poorhouse’.

Right wing Labour politicians are clutching at straws by begging for a policy devised by a now ousted Tory Chancellor and that was of little substance to be saved.

‘Northern Powerhouse’ progress: Slower than the Southport to Manchester train?

The Story is on the Birkdale Focus Blog site – see link above

As someone who has always been at best sceptical of the Northern Powerhouse concept/project I find myself at one with Lauren Keith who has written a posting on this subject for the Birkdale Focus blog site. It is worth a read.

I commented quite some time ago about a Labour Party friend of mine re- christening it the ‘Northern Poorhouse’ and a more apt name I have yet to come across. Sadly, I get the impression though that northern Labour leaders seem to have been taken in by it. Without really significant investment it is and will remain nothing more Tory than window dressing.

£340m Liverpool Rail Improvements/Investments – but lets cut the Blair type re-announcements please

The Liverpool Echo and the BBC web site have the story – see links above

Liverpool Lime Street Station

Liverpool Lime Street Station

Two differing takes here on some welcome rail investment news for Liverpool/Merseyside, but you do get the impression, especially from the BBC article that a lot of it, like in the Blair years, is re-announcing what has already been announced to big up the overall picture.

Site for the new Maghull North Railway Station.  Photo taken looking north from School Lane road bridge. The former Moss Side Hospital site is to the right and Mersey Avenue to the left.

Site for the new Maghull North Railway Station. Photo taken looking north from School Lane road bridge. The former Moss Side Hospital site is to the right and Mersey Avenue to the left.

Take Maghull North Station, yes we know its going to happen, the Coalition Government gave more than 90% of the money for it well over a year ago. And what about the Halton Curve, the reopening of it for passenger rail services has been pumped out as new news more times than I have had hot dinners.

But please none of us get too carried away because the amount of money being invested in transportation projects in the north is nothing like what it is, per head of population, in the south east.

And what’s more our northern rail investments are unsurprisingly being linked yet again to that Northern Poorhouse project! Is there any public money now spent in the north that is not related to ‘keep the grumbling northerners from moaning too much project’?

The second photo is amongst my Flickr shots at:-