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How To Fix 'The North'?

I've spoken to a whole raft of 'incomers' here in Preston over the years. The vast majority are from London and the SE. Many has sold their modest house/flat and got something much nicer up here.
I have asked them what they like about it around here and the thing they almost always say first is 'everyone is so much friendlier', followed by less stress and it being much less polluted and clean. That and being close to the beach, lakes and Pennines. Want to go to a big gig? Manchester/Liverpool are a mere 45 mins down the road.
It's becoming a bit of a trend.

Back to the subject of how to 'fix' the north, it still escapes me as to where to start. I visit London on business several times a year (stand fast 2020) and am always shocked at the levels of investment that goes on, and to have something even at a fraction of that locally would be amazing, but I'm damned if I know where they would start.

We simply don't have the things that the SE takes for granted (often initially tax payer funded) that in turn attracts further investment (TfL and Crossrail for example) and the lack of invetsment has become the normal here. We don't miss it, becuase we never had it, but that's not the same as not needing it.
I mean how to you improve a grim East Lancs town that has not seen any investment for 40+ years? How do you attract business to a place like that? Where do you begin? Better transport links? Improved town centres? Investment in better housing?
It's a really complicated issue and I really wouldn't know what should be done first.
 
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I've spoken to a whole raft of 'incomers' here in Preston over the years. The vast majority are from London and the SE. Many has sold their modest house/flat and got something much nicer up here.
I have aske dthem what they like about it around here andd the thing they almost always say first is 'everyone is so much friendlier', followed by less stress and it being much less polluted and clean. That and being close to the beach, lakes and Pennines. Want to go to a big gig? Manchester/Liverpool are a mere 45 mins down the road.
It's becoming a bit of a trend.

Back to the subject of how to 'fix' the north, it still escapes me as to where to start. I visit London on business several times a year (stand fast 2020) and am always shocked at the levels of investment that goes on, and to have something even at a fraction of that locally would be amazing, but I'm damned if I know where they would start.

We simply don't have the things that the SE takes for granted (often initially tax payer funded) that in turn attracts further investment (TfL and Crossrail for example) and the lack of invetsment has become the normal here. We don't miss it, becuase we never had it, but that's not the same as not needing it.
I mean how to you improve a grim East Lancs town that has not seen any investment for 40+ years? How do you attract business to a place like that? Where do you begin? Better transport links? Improved town centres? Investment in better housing?
It's a really complicated issue and I really wouldn't know what should be done first.
My bold." During the war"....shut up uncle Albert.......Hanover, Dresden,Bremen, Berlin and half a hundred other city's were completely flattened, within 20 years, all are modern, up to date, with new integrated transport systems, and all are pleasant, bright, fully functioning and nice places to visit and work in. Question:- How to fix the north? Answer:- Carpet bombing.......... If it worked in Germany....japan....just a random observation......
 
We simply don't have the things that the SE takes for granted (often initially tax payer funded) that in turn attracts further investment (TfL and Crossrail for example) and the lack of invetsment has become the normal here. We don't miss it, becuase we never had it, but that's not the same as not needing it.
I mean how to you improve a grim East Lancs town that has not seen any investment for 40+ years? How do you attract business to a place like that? Where do you begin? Better transport links? Improved town centres? Investment in better housing?
It's a really complicated issue and I really wouldn't know what should be done first.
This in the next few years will sort itself out as people move from London and are looking to be mortgage free. I have already figured I can do that by moving up North and still keep my current job as I could base myself in the Richmond office if I need to go in for any reason. Cheaper towns will see a real influx of disposable income and then the other bits will follow on.
 
My bold." During the war"....shut up uncle Albert.......Hanover, Dresden,Bremen, Berlin and half a hundred other city's were completely flattened, within 20 years, all are modern, up to date, with new integrated transport systems, and all are pleasant, bright, fully functioning and nice places to visit and work in. Question:- How to fix the north? Answer:- Carpet bombing.......... If it worked in Germany....japan....just a random observation......
That is not far from the truth, these places were able to start again in effect and in some ways futureproof their cities, better conduits for underground services, better travel integration. Where as London was left mostly standing and has to make do with Victorian infrastructure or try and adapt modern services to fit the Victorian infrastructure.
 
My bold." During the war"....shut up uncle Albert.......Hanover, Dresden,Bremen, Berlin and half a hundred other city's were completely flattened, within 20 years, all are modern, up to date, with new integrated transport systems, and all are pleasant, bright, fully functioning and nice places to visit and work in. Question:- How to fix the north? Answer:- Carpet bombing.......... If it worked in Germany....japan....just a random observation......
I was listening to a programme a while ago. The topic was Crossrail. There was some comment about the huge overspend in time and money trying to weave the line through "old London town" and avoid the underground, motorways, sewers, existing railway track and all the other Victorian infrastructure.
 
I was listening to a programme a while ago. The topic was Crossrail. There was some comment about the huge overspend in time and money trying to weave the line through "old London town" and avoid the underground, motorways, sewers, existing railway track and all the other Victorian infrastructure.


Back in prehistoric times, while working on the new UCH building in Gower street, central london, i had on occasion to descend into the labyrinth of tunnels and passageways under the new hospital which linked the new building to the many departments of the existing hospital. Being of a inquisitive mind, and only 17 years old, i went walkabout, and found myself in the main walkway many feet under Tottenham Court Road, these tunnels i found out later were used in WW2, to house american GI's prior to D-Day. A surface entrance still exists in TCR. 1967.
 
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Mufulira42

Clanker
The north is fine its the people that need fixing.
Inherently lazy and distrustful unkempt and surly. always looking to blame the south for their own failure.
Whats the solution #NLM? 3rd world issues.
Slightly off-topic, as I just finished a book on on HM Forces and found that a famous chap, Beau Brummel, who had a commission in a very fancy Hussar Regiment that was greatly esteemed by the then current POW. When being informed by the CO that the regiment was transferring to Manchester he immediately resigned on the grounds he was not able to serve in foreign places! Even then!!!
 
How to fix "The North"? Move the capital to York. Then all the money will be spent in the north and not on soft, shandy-swilling, shirt-lifting southern jessies.

Maybe the answer is a proper answer to the Midlothian Question and devolution for England.

We could then separate out government of the UK and put that somewhere else away from the government of England.
 
The current situation is accelerating the fragmentation of the UK. It's going to end up like the FYR at this rate.
 
9. Manchester Airport. Rail and tram connections across the region but generally slow. Over the last 15 years the airport station has gone from 2 to 6 platforms. Not all in one go, that’d be too easy, one project at a time, disrupting services for 15 years. There are 2 runways at Manchester, the only dual runway airport in the U.K. besides Heathrow. Years of planning wrangles resulted in compromise with the local Parish Council (yes, PARISH council) meaning the 2nd runway can only be used seemingly when there’s an X in the month.
East Midlands Airport was owned by the same bunch that owned Ringway (showing my age there), don't know if it still is, but apparently 48% of their income comes from car parking. I imagine other airports have a similar dependency of their car parking income stream. No surprise then that every proposal to integrate the mass transport network to it is kicked into the long grass. Even though HS2+ will pass within 2 miles of it and there'll be the Nottingham interchange hub 3 miles away, any ideas about extending the Nottingham tram network, which will be extended the extra 1/2 mile to the interchange, are met with blank faces.
 
IMHO two sectors are going to get a proper shoeing following on from this enforced experiment in e-commerce, commercial real estate and business oriented airlines. The evidence seems to suggest that office based trade hasn’t been impacted by people working from their kitchens so why send a bloke out from his plush Canary Wharf office to New York to have a meeting? Why even have the plush office?
I recall in the late 90s' having a conversation with an engineer at British Aerospace, as it was then. He was talking about the decisions made when they were looking to replace the BAe125 business jet they did some research on the competitors. It turn out they weren't in competition with the LearJets and Citations etc, they were up against some new fangled technology called 'Video Conferencing'. That's what was going to kill the business jet market.

And to think then that Video Conferencing was using dedicated hardware with an ISDN2 connection. That's 128kbps. Yes Kbps. None of your gigabit malarky
 
East Midlands Airport was owned by the same bunch that owned Ringway (showing my age there), don't know if it still is, but apparently 48% of their income comes from car parking. I imagine other airports have a similar dependency of their car parking income stream. No surprise then that every proposal to integrate the mass transport network to it is kicked into the long grass. Even though HS2+ will pass within 2 miles of it and there'll be the Nottingham interchange hub 3 miles away, any ideas about extending the Nottingham tram network, which will be extended the extra 1/2 mile to the interchange, are met with blank faces.
Interesting point that I’d not considered. Manchester Airport Group does indeed own East Mids as well as Stansted and Bournemouth.

Parking at MAN is a very sore point. They’ve recently started charging just to drop off and pick up and the rates are eye watering, something like £3 for 5 minutes and £20 thereafter. Of course they hide behind the Green excuse. I dropped off there one day, literally, passengers out, bags out and away. The queue to get out took me and others over the 5 minutes so all hell broke loose. I stayed out of it because these bastards have a standard response to employees, withdrawal of your ID card which renders you unemployable but the guy ahead of me just walked off bringing the whole thing to a standstill. The police turned up and (rightly) he point blank refused to pay more than the £3. Eventually the police ordered the barrier opened and everyone piled out for free.

I got a fixed penalty notice because of course it was all on CCTV so I contacted Greater Manchester Police and they’d had dozens of similar calls from people who’d basically done what the police told them to do. Even with a letter from GMP opined to MAG the airport still threatened legal action but nothing ever came of it as I’m told the Justice Department read them their tea leaves.

Airports basically see passengers as cash cows and inconvenient ones when they start demanding something in return.
 
I recall in the late 90s' having a conversation with an engineer at British Aerospace, as it was then. He was talking about the decisions made when they were looking to replace the BAe125 business jet they did some research on the competitors. It turn out they weren't in competition with the LearJets and Citations etc, they were up against some new fangled technology called 'Video Conferencing'. That's what was going to kill the business jet market.

And to think then that Video Conferencing was using dedicated hardware with an ISDN2 connection. That's 128kbps. Yes Kbps. None of your gigabit malarky
Fair point but it’s one thing viewing a new technology which some might try as a potential threat to current business practice, quite another when the entire developed world business population has been forced to give it a go and found it eminently workable.

Every once in a while a technology comes along that very soon the world wonders how they survived without it be that because it’s just a stunningly useful bit of kit, a piece of kit that was just right for the circumstances or combinations thereof. When families in lockdown are setting up quiz nights and schools are remotely educating kids through Zoom and Teams etc, technologies that most of us hadn’t heard of a year ago, then I’d suggest that e-commerce using these technologies is going to see the same explosive growth in utilisation that fax machines, mobile phones, computers and the www each experienced in their time. It’s just the next phase of development and if it saves business money. You don’t even need to invest much in it, the hardware is already there, just buy the software licences which for small set ups aren’t just cheap, they’re free.

IMHO it’s already mainstream. As mentioned, families are already using it socially and look at how many TV ads feature it. It’s already here and it’s fast becoming a new normal.
 
"old London town"
London is two city's:-
Old London town, i suspect is the original roman London, the 1.5 square mile of the City of London, the original 7* gated and walled roman settlement, now the northern hemispheres financial capital. Its a separate enclave to the city of Westminster, with its own laws, lord mayor and police force.

*Aldergate.
Aldersgate.
Bishopsgate.
Moorgate.
Cripplegate.
Newgate.
Ludgate.
 

HCL

War Hero
Pah! anywhere in Norfolk is 3 hours away from a motorway.

... even by horseless carriage.

But seriously, that’s an average of 50mph which is pretty much what you can achieve on the M62.

There we all were picturing @Toastie as the left-hand seatedness sky god, cool shades and hostie rubbing oil into his tanned shoulders and...

Turns out he’s actually a full-on neck bearded ‘railways enthusiast’ who smells of sandwiches...
From bloody Crewe after all

Haven't you got s boiler to stoke? Back below the waterline for you, my lad. Hop to it.
 
There we all were picturing @Toastie as the left-hand seatedness sky god, cool shades and hostie rubbing oil into his tanned shoulders and...

Turns out he’s actually a full-on neck bearded ‘railways enthusiast’ who smells of sandwiches...
From bloody Crewe after all!
A train nerd? You mean he should be on a certain register...
 
My bold." During the war"....shut up uncle Albert.......Hanover, Dresden,Bremen, Berlin and half a hundred other city's were completely flattened, within 20 years, all are modern, up to date, with new integrated transport systems, and all are pleasant, bright, fully functioning and nice places to visit and work in. Question:- How to fix the north? Answer:- Carpet bombing.......... If it worked in Germany....japan....just a random observation......
And therein lies the rub. Unlike many German and UK towns, many parts of the north escaped the war with little or no damage outside of the major cities. Most northern towns are almost exactly the same as they were in the late 1800's and to modernise them would involve, as several of you have said, a complete flattening of the place.
To get residents on board with this would be a very large ask, espcially as we have Skelmersdale to point to when the powers that be want to make a town anew.
 
Airports basically see passengers as cash cows self loading freight and inconvenient ones when they start demanding something in return.
At EMA there's a petrol station on the perimeter. Countless people have incurred a fixed penalty which prevents people being dropped off there to avoid similar eye watering drop off charges.

Green excuse? my arse, the only public transport access to EMA is a 2 shuttle buses an hour to nottingham that calls at every god forsaken suburb on the way making it a 1hr journey. to cover what takes 20 mins in a car
 
A train nerd? You mean he should be on a certain register...
To be fair, there's a school of thought that- anyone from, or near to Crewe ought to be- as a precautionary measure.
 
To get residents on board with this would be a very large ask, espcially as we have Skelmersdale to point to when the powers that be want to make a town anew.
To be fair Skem has a huge number of roundabouts that kept me amused on my LC250 in the late 70s'
 

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