Public service reform

Labour Party Leader Ed Miliband Visits The Univerity College London Hospital

Labour’s NHS strategy – tax tobacco, save the cancer patients

18 October 2014 13:22

Labour wants the next election to be about the NHS, one of their strongest issues. Party strategists have been struck by how it has been rising up voters’ list of… Continue reading

Royal Sussex County Hospital, UK

An NHS tax is just another name for a tax rise

17 May 2014 10:51

Finding a way to raise taxes that is popular is, for some on the centre-left, the Holy Grail. As the well connected Andrew Grice reports in The Independent today, a… Continue reading


Matt Hancock vows to fight low pay, but fails to emphasise the importance of low inflation

27 March 2013 12:10

Matt Hancock, the business and skills minister, addressed the Resolution Foundation’s low pay debate this morning, an indication of how seriously the Tories are taking the rising cost of living.… Continue reading

Jeremy Hunt has introduced a new NHS Mandate. Former health SpAd Richard Marsh explains why the idea is not new. Image: Getty.

Jeremy Hunt’s NHS Mandate will make the service even more cumbersome

14 November 2012 10:53

Earlier this week my wife called to make a GP appointment for our daughter, who has been experiencing some worrying tummy pains.  Middle of next week she was told, earliest.… Continue reading

Baroness Warsi caught sleeping on the job, again? Image: Getty

Tories swing into action in Corby, at last

1 September 2012 11:03

The Corby by-election campaign is warming up, with the Tories selecting Christine Emmett as their candidate. Emmett is a local woman who lives in neighbouring Rutland. She runs her own… Continue reading

Diamond Jubilee - Carriage Procession And Balcony Appearance

Winsor — the outsider

12 June 2012 9:00

In nominating the lawyer and former rail regulator Tom Winsor as her choice to be the next chief inspector of constabulary, the home secretary has stoked more discontent among the… Continue reading


Choice — easy to talk about, a slog to deliver

29 March 2012 13:16

The birth of the White Paper on public service reform was a tortuous business — but, now it’s been out for several months, the government is keen to make the… Continue reading


Gove knows the importance of adoption

24 February 2012 11:04

The coalition’s work on adoption is one of its more impressive bits of public service reform. It starts from the right premise, that adoption is vastly preferable to children being… Continue reading


When failure actually counts as success

22 February 2012 8:58

Michael Gove’s latest prognosis for schools was delivered at a lunch in Westminster yesterday, but it’s important enough to repeat the morning after. The Independent has a full report here,… Continue reading


Labour’s late to the policemens’ ball

6 December 2011 16:38

Labour has today unveiled a panel of experts to consider the future of British policing.  The review, chaired by the former Metropolitan Police Commissioner Lord Stevens, will report by spring… Continue reading


Back to square one

6 December 2011 10:48

Benedict Brogan has some bad news from the engine room of public service reform. ‘I’m told Downing Street is starting all over again on public service reform. Will Cavendish, one… Continue reading


Lansley’s real fight

13 October 2011 9:21

Yesterday was a rare good day for Andrew Lansley: the Health Bill survived its trial in the House of Lords. But there are no fanfares in this morning’s press for the… Continue reading


Gove: the Tories are the party of state schooling

4 October 2011 16:33

Apologies for my recent, extended absence, CoffeeHousers — Vietnam and my immune system just didn’t get on. But I’m back now, and firmly embedded in Manchester, where Michael Gove has… Continue reading


Gearing up for the Tories

29 September 2011 18:27

Westminster is preparing for the Tory conference and Ben Brogan reports that a confident mood pervades the blue camp. The positive briefings have begun. The Guardian reveals that the speed… Continue reading


Exploiting a conservative moment

25 September 2011 22:43

Away from the resurrection of David Miliband, other Labour modernisers convened at the Progress rally earlier this evening. These weren’t just any old party hacks; they were grandees: Douglas Alexander,… Continue reading


Corporatism, comms and civil servants

23 September 2011 9:01

David Cameron renewed his calls for global action for growth last night and it seems that the work begins at home. The Times reports (£) that 50 of Britain’s largest… Continue reading


Cameron’s foreign frustrations

22 September 2011 16:49

David Cameron’s much trailed speech to the UN is tinged with frustration. He will say, “You can sign every human rights declaration in the world but if you stand by and… Continue reading


Clegg’s chance to lead by example

21 September 2011 10:19

Nick Clegg will deliver his keynote speech to the Liberal Democrat conference later this afternoon. It has been substantially trailed this morning, despite competing for airtime with Nick Robinson’s story… Continue reading


Clegg wants to communicate

20 September 2011 11:07

Communication, communication, communication: that appears to be Nick Clegg’s new political mantra. Speaking to the Today programme earlier this morning, the Lib Dem leader said: "If there is a legitimate… Continue reading


Time to recognise that the hospital is dead

15 September 2011 16:28

For many years, it has been Government policy to move healthcare out of hospitals and into community units and homes, and concentrate specialist surgeries in centres of clinical excellence. This… Continue reading


Bernard Hogan-Howe named as new Met commissioner

12 September 2011 17:03

Theresa May has named Bernard Hogan-Howe as the new Metropolitan Police Commissioner. Hogan-Howe was the early front-runner and a finalist for the role last time round. He is apparently highly respected… Continue reading


The Swedish case for school profits

2 September 2011 19:00

Should state schools be able to make a profit? We asked this of you on our Coffee House poll this week. 71 per cent of you said yes, and with… Continue reading


Miliband re-opens campaign with same old weapons

30 August 2011 16:53

Party politics is back from the summer and the summer’s events are defining the strategic dividing lines. Ed Miliband reopened hostilities by threatening to force a vote on police cuts.… Continue reading


Labour’s new attack strategy: Cameron’s a right-winger

28 August 2011 11:28

The Observer has a cracking scoop: a brief document detailing a new Labour plan to attack Cameron. The memo has been written by Shaun Woodward, the former Tory MP and… Continue reading


The schools revolution in action

25 August 2011 12:19

Harris Academies, one of the best-known new chains of state secondaries, have today posted an  extraordinary set of results. It’s worth studying because it shows how a change of management can… Continue reading