Westminster’s crumbling so let’s quit the London bubble  - John McNally

The crumbling architecture of the Houses of Parliament is to me symbolic of a weakening of the UK government system.
Falkirk MP John McNallyFalkirk MP John McNally
Falkirk MP John McNally

As instability and in-fighting continues to erode Tory leadership, a new report has been issued detailing the eye-watering costs of repairing the aged Westminster buildings from where the UK is controlled.

The document, published by the Public Accounts Committee, has shown that the bill for restoring the Victorian structure will reach tens of billions of pounds. And every single week the work goes uncompleted, this patching up costs tax-payers over £2 million.

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Meg Hillier MP, chair of the report, highlighted the lack of confidence many MPs feel in the success of such a daunting and costly task.

​The bill for restoring the Houses of Parliament is estimated to run into tens of billions of pounds​The bill for restoring the Houses of Parliament is estimated to run into tens of billions of pounds
​The bill for restoring the Houses of Parliament is estimated to run into tens of billions of pounds

“But without Parliament and the public having that confidence these critical works will continue to stall, with the real risk that the whole building will be destroyed by a catastrophic incident before the work is done, or perhaps even begun,” she said.

It looks like a full decant of MPs is needed to empty Westminster and make a proper start to the work. But if we go elsewhere, why return at all? I believe this is an opportunity to permanently move away from the London bubble.

I may be a cynic but could it be that the current reluctance to decant is tied up in a loss of contracts to privileged London suppliers?

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Others too, believe it’s time to move on. Gordon Brown has previously stated that the Westminster building was no longer fit for purpose.

Mayor of the West Midlands and Conservative party member, Andy Street, has said he is fed up going to London with a begging bowl and consequently that power must shift from Whitehall to the regions.

Keir Starmer has also proposed the biggest transfer of political power out of Westminster and into the wider towns and cities of the UK.

I am all for this while Scotland is forced to deal with a UK government. I also see the sense in decision-making in the relevant geographical areas.

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Our fight for Scotland’s independence has always been about this.

Our country has suffered greatly due to a lack of interest, care and knowledge on what we as a nation needs to thrive. London-centric Westminster has long treated us as an afterthought.

For decades the political chambers would practically empty when it was time to discuss Scottish issues. Since those days, SNP MPs have brought a strong Scottish voice into the UK parliament. But it’s not enough.

It’s interesting that the Northern powerhouses of England are now speaking up for their needs after years of neglect. It’s time for reforming the focus of power.

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For Scotland that means independence and a total control of our affairs.

Crumbling Westminster is costing the tax-payer billions while citizens are struggling to pay their food bills, electricity and mortgages. An appalling thought.

This is the perfect time for a flit.

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