Owen Jones' piece today is just another reminder of the huge disparities between London and the rest of Britain. Be it for politics, culture or business - the capital has a monopoly. The consequences for London is a city which cannot afford its people and a people that cannot afford its city. Yet in a city where a living wage will barely cover a one-room apartment for a family to exist in -people continue to flock. For work in national and international media, politics and art, to name but a few concentrated industries, London is the only choice. Whilst an average salary in Wales stands at £19,000, the mean in London is £35,000. With Britain increasingly focused into one city, London's housing will continue to suffer and the nation outside of the capital will collapse. For the sake of both London and Britain - there must be concerted effort to put an end to the capital's monopoly on Britain.
A first step could be to run Britain from elsewhere. If parliament chooses to temporarily close for repairs, the option of running parliament elsewhere in London should be ruled out - instead it should relocate further afield. The legislature could be temporarily hosted in any arena in Britain and would gift thousands of jobs to whichever city it was placed in. The option of relocating the civil service could also be explored. Certain departments have already partially moved from Whitehall and in the age of the internet there is no need for the offices to each be located on the same SW1 stretch. To alleviate costs, they could occupy former council buildings left empty by local government restructuring in the current government.
A tourist industry would naturally develop in any areas where politics existed - but there could be increased incentives to attract visitors. There is no need for the next London Eye or Millennium Dome to be planted in to the capital. In France, the Eurostar has recently been extended to Marseille - on our side we could stretch further afield too. Better inner-city transport links could follow. When cities on the scale of Leeds currently have no options other than buses, London will remain dominant. Trams and light-rail, metros and cable transits areall ideas that could be developed. Developing new means of inner-city transport from scratch would also create the opportunity for green transport to be utilised. Jobs would follow, businesses would be keener to develop and people would far sooner relocate.
The results of dampening London's grip on Britain would benefit both the capital and elsewhere. In London, alleviated demand on housing could help property return to a more sustainable share of wages, whereas overstretched services would too benefit from a steadier population. Cities helped by the relocation of political, tourist, creative and media industries would flourish with the injection of jobs and wealth. For the sake of London and elsewhere - we must end the capital's monopoly on Britain.