'I see little evidence of benefits of Model'

Does the 'Preston Model' work?
Does the 'Preston Model' work?
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I read with interest the article by Julian Manley (LP November 24) on the “success of Preston” and his bizarre suggestion that Preston’s welcome recent success is due to the Preston Model, Corbynism and Coun Matthew Brown.

I have no doubt that ‘smarter’ procurement and encouraging local firms to supply local businesses has been beneficial but I see little evidence of any other benefits of the ‘Preston Model’.

It reminds me of the ‘Emperor’s New Clothes’.

If really implemented, as its advocates want, it would stifle competition and powers in councillors and union officials to decide on contracts etc.

This is a surefire way to deter investment and would return us to the late 1970s.

I looked in vain for any mention of City Deal – the Government’s initiative, and the biggest factor in our resurgence, which has kept millions in Preston to be invested in infrastructure.

No mention, either, of UCLan or the private sector, and particularly BID, which actually creates jobs and invests.

I am not surprised that there is no mention of Conservatives who, when in control, started the process of Preston City Council becoming a Living Wage employer.

I looked in vain for any mention of Peter Rankin who led the council and negotiated– with excellent officers, County and South Ribble Councils – with the Government over City Deal.

History shows that capitalism lifts millions out of poverty whilst socialism impoverishes nations.

The classic example is Venezuela.

Corbynistas, until very recently, were fulsome in their praise of that country!

Silence now... I wonder why?

Neil Cartwright

Leader

Conservative Group on Preston City Council

brexit

Brexit’s far from over

While many people are exhausted by the arguments around Brexit, they should be urged not to capitulate to so-called ‘Brexit Boredom’.

Much of the debate to date has been fuelled not by the national interest but rather by posturing and power struggles within the Tory party.

This political infighting has done nothing to assist the electorate understand the implications of the momentous decision that they made in 2016.

Instead our much needed headspace to analyse and process the complexity of Mrs May’s so-called deal is now reduced to an ‘I know best!’ rhetorical stance reminiscent of the style adopted by Thatcher and Blair.

In reality, this latest deal does little for either side of the Brexit divide.

We now know, not least from the Electoral Commission, that the original referendum was tainted by lies, dodgy electoral processes and even foreign interference. It is thus not surprising that this so-called latest deal is rightly likely to get voted down next month when it comes to Parliament on the grounds that it a bad deal for the country. A view that is even shared by Mrs May’s own Brexit advisor!

While some British people may feel that this divisive and internationally embarrassing interlude in our history is finally over, sadly they need to think again. On examination, May’s deal is nothing more than a prelude to a never-ending Brexit. Our future, and our children’s future, is now basically on hold until this complex deal is ‘negotiated’.

Surely the answer has to be another vote. This is not undemocratic as some of your recent correspondents would suggest. Given that we now have the evidence to know that the majority of the population wants a People’s Vote then, in the name of sanity and the need for a government that can focus on much needed domestic issues, this has to be the only way out of this messy quagmire.

Dawn B Judd

Fulwood

brexit

Mistake to rush Article 50

The Prime Minister has called on the country to unite behind the Withdrawal Agreement she has agreed with the EU. The UK objective has been to control the movement of people in two directions: citizens wanting to leave the UK to live, work or retire to a country in Europe, and those wishing to come to work here in the UK.

However, Mrs May could have easily controlled inward migration by using procedures already in use in the rest of Europe. Combined with the introduction of biometric identity cards, this could have allayed the fears of many that some people might be entering the UK for free health and social benefits.

Invoking Article 50 so hurriedly was a classic mistake in trying to impress the right-wing of her Tory Party.

Mrs May’s tactical failures have also contributed to a deal which will leave the UK restricted and unable to contribute to the inner workings of Europe. We will not be leading but led by the halter.

Since the 2016 referendum, the UK economy has weakened and the average employee is now far worse off than before. Mrs May’s plea for support would be far more credible if she allowed the electorate to vote. Any trade union is expected to put the result of their negotiations to a vote, as would any industrial leader to directors, but the UK citizen is expected to blindly follow Mrs May. Parliament will have to find a constitutional arrangement which will not be so damaging, but if this does not happen, a People’s Vote will be needed.

Mr G W Collinge,

Lancaster