Think England gets a fair deal? Think again! Here’s what the UK government spends on each country:
2007-2008 UK identifiable expenditure by function and country, £ per head
|General Public Services||£129||£213||£247||£281|
|Public Order and Safety||£487||£439||£490||£688|
|Enterprise and Economic Development||£96||£214||£267||£215|
|Science and Technology||£30||£42||£19||£33|
|Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry||£74||£219||£114||£295|
|Housing and Community Ammenities||£184||£387||£193||£439|
|Recreation, Culture and Religion||£119||£203||£220||£226|
|Education and Training||£1,278||£1,455||£1,322||£1,475|
|As a percentage of Mean||86%||105%||98%||112%|
It would be indefensible to suggest that money should not be directed towards poorer parts of the UK whilst England is part of the Union. However, the movement towards a regional assembly in the North East of England was partly driven by the disparity between its funding and that of neighbouring Scotland. Indeed, taking the 2000/2001 figures, if the level of expenditure in Scotland had been matched in the North East, the region would have received a further £627 per person, an increase of £1.35 billion. This is a disparity maintained by the UK Government. Scotland received more money before devolution, it still receives more despite the fact that it can now raise money through taxation of its own people. An English parliament is required to address this affront to the people of the North East and other parts of England.
The funding gap (£/head) between England and Scotland has grown in recent years. In 1999/2000 it stood at £376, in 2000/2001 it was £627 and in the financial year 2006/2006 it had jumped to £1,503 per person, per year.
In the year 2000 Tony Blair said: “The Barnett Formula has its own inbuilt review in the sense that it narrows the gap over time.”
The Barnett Formula is in theory supposed to equalise spending between Scotland, Wales and England but there is no sign of this. England desperately needs its own parliament to fight for its share of money, not just for the North East but for all of England.
It is doubtful that a North East Assembly would have had the necessary political clout to achieve this aim. What’s more, it would not have addressed the funding disparity between Scotland and England. A North East assembly might have just succeeded in taking funding from the other parts of England instead of forcing the UK Government to distribute money around the UK fairly.
Ministers of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland can represent the whole of the UK at Brussels. Neither England as a whole, nor its proposed regions can do this.
In the House of Commons, Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish MPs can vote on purely English affairs and affect what happens to England, but English MPs are prohibited from voting on matters purely affecting their countries. This is because England has no Parliament of its own where people of England can decide things for themselves.
In May 2003 Scottish Labour MPs voted in favour of foundation hospitals in England despite the fact that the Scottish Labour Party had rejected them for Scotland where English representatives have no say.
In England there are fewer MPs per head of population than in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland.
Despite having achieved devolution, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland still have special ministers in the UK government dedicated to furthering their interests. England has none. The Scottish Office, Welsh Office and Northern Irish Office are charged with ensuring that their respective nations’ interests are represented within the UK.
In the event of a YES vote on UK entry into the European Monetary Union, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and all the continental nations of Europe would have representation provided by their national parliaments. England has no parliament so it would be represented by the UK Parliament. England will be the only nation of Europe without specific representation for its people.
Europe of the Regions produced a map of England that famously omitted England yet included the other nations of the UK. This is the reality of England’s situation. England is a political non-entity: The proposed regional assemblies of England will not have the powers of the Scottish Parliament. As John Prescott has commented “People do not expect the equivalent of a Scottish Parliament for the English regions.” An English Parliament is needed to provide parity with the people of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland because the people of England do expect that.
Without any democratic overall guidance in the form of an English Parliament the regionalisation of England will result in English regions squabbling over budget allocations, and fighting for EU funds with all the members of the EU. The result will be a Balkanised England – this is the end of England as a cohesive unit.
An English Parliament
Would ensure that the present democratic deficit operating in the UK was addressed. It would ensure that England has influence and that the people of England have a voice in the UK, within Europe and on the international stage to promote England’s culture, tourism, history and trade.
The future of England can be bright, whether it is as part of the UK, as an independent nation state or as a state within Europe. Regardless of which route we take we must first have recognition in order to preserve and codify our individual identity as an historic nation, this is only fair. Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, quite rightly, already have this.
Please join us
We need members and funds with which to campaign. We have members from all political persuasions who care about the people of England and want to see them properly represented. Unfortunately many politicians are either unaware of what is going on or have a vested political interest in seeing England under-represented.
England was described as the Mother of all Parliaments. Help us to persuade the politicians of England to return fair democratic representation to England by joining us today.
2006 – 2007
2006-2007 UK identifiable expenditure by function and country, £ per head
|General Public Services||£114||£191||£223||£249|
|Public Order and Safety||£466||£419||£445||£780|
|Enterprise and Economic Development||£93||£192||£258||£138|
|Science and Technology||£39||£39||£18||£36|
|Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry||£70||£133||£130||£259|
|Housing and Community Ammenities||£168||£311||£184||£502|
|Recreation, Culture and Religion||£110||£200||£205||£179|
|Education and Training||£1,192||£1,388||£1,255||£1,372|
|As a percentage of Mean||86%||104%||98%||110%|
2005 – 2006
2005-2006 UK identifiable expenditure by function and country, £ per head
|General Public Services||£93||£164||£213||£240|
|Public Order and Safety||£403||£399||£405||£750|
|Enterprise and Economic Development||£94||£126||£287||£190|
|Science and Technology||£37||£61||£21||£41|
|Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry||£75||£134||£134||£375|
|Housing and Community Ammenities||£132||£289||£134||£475|
|Recreation, Culture and Religion||£123||£207||£197||£84|
|Education and Training||£1,147||£1,258||£1,170||£1,459|
|As a percentage of Mean||97%||118%||110%||130%|