Tory leaders wants spread of jobs
Davidson calls for end to ‘London-centric’ UK
Ruth Davidson: more power to the people (photo by Terry Murden)
Ruth Davidson will today call for more government and cultural jobs to be moved out of London to help build support for the Union.
The Scottish Conservative leader will use her address to the UK party conference to say the country has become too London-centric.
She will make the case for a greater spread of institutions across the country in line with the Conservative general election manifesto.
The party made a pledge to start moving UK organisations and public servants away from London to other cities.
Ms Davidson will argue that, despite 20 years of devolution, London continues to dominate in a way that other world capitals such as Washington DC or Berlin do not.
In her speech, she will cite the examples including the V&A museum in Dundee, the relocation of civil service jobs to Edinburgh and the Northern Powerhouse agenda for Manchester as a starting point for a Union spread “more evenly”.
But she will say that more needs to be done, and that Scotland should “seize the opportunity” to ensure more institutions and jobs are shifted north of the border.
She will say: “Devolution of power has transformed our nation for the better. It has put power closer to people.
“But – at the same time – while we’ve built vigorous new devolved structures, we’ve not done enough to nurture that which binds us.
“As the Prime Minister said in Scotland earlier this year, all too often, Whitehall devolves and forgets, and the danger is that we become a country that stays together, but lives apart, with the cracks exploited by those who would pull us apart for good.
“So let me make a plea today. More Union right across Britain.
“Only Moscow among major global capitals accounts for a greater share of national product than London. “