Labour and Lib Dems would abolish Hampshire, says local MP
23 Apr 2001
Is this the last St George's Day for England's oldest surviving tiers of Government, namely County Councils like Hampshire?

Sir George said "Hampshire County Council is one of the oldest surviving tiers of self-government in Western Europe, predating the Domesday Book. Labour and the Liberal Democrats now plan to vandalise our constitution and heritage by scrapping county government in favour of unwanted regional talking shops.

"Labour's definitions of English 'regions' are just arbitrary, Whitehall-determined lines on a map. They lack common purpose and culture. Essex has more common interests with London than it does with Hampshire.

Labour's proposals are not driven by a desire to make local government more accountable but by an unrepresentative desire to create a 'Europe of the Regions' and undermine Britain's national identity.

Abolishing Hampshire County Council and establishing a South East Regional Assembly will take power away from local people, creating a new tier of regional politicians, strengthening not weakening the role of Whitehall.
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