Rebalancing power away from Westminster is vital | Letters

  The Guardian 

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Readers respond to an article by John Harris on why the highly centralised model of governance is failing the country John Harris is right (The rest of the country will suffer so long as Westminster holds the purse strings , 26 October) – we need to think about what sort of Britain we need to overcome the huge regional inequalities in the UK, and England in particular. The rows between the mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, and Westminster indicate a sea change in attitudes towards our centralised state. While Burnham and the other city-region mayors represent a move towards regional democracy, it remains partial. They are elected as individuals, without the democratic backup that the devolved nations in the UK have. Harris refers to the German model of local and regional democracy – we have so much to learn from it. The German regions are political entities, not individual fiefdoms, and have strong powers. Effective local government works as a partner with the regional tier.

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