“Levelling Up” must benefit the whole country. While plenty has been written discussing “Levelling Up the North”, far less attention has been given to what it means to “Level Up the South” and in particular the South West, the region I represent. This is perhaps because, taken as a whole, the South West sits around the average on many of the indicators of success that the levelling up agenda may target when compared to the rest of the UK.
But dig a little deeper and it becomes clear that there is vast intra-regional inequality in the South West on a level barely seen elsewhere within the country. As I set out in a new report for the thinktank Onward today, this makes broad-brush regional comparisons and traditional indicators of success unhelpful in discussing the unique position of the South West, and the challenges we face in trying to grow the regional economy.
You can read the full piece here.