In his cover piece for this week’s magazine, Neil O’Brien describes the
great divide between London and the rest of the UK. One of the main differences he highlights is in their economies. He says:
‘In inner west London, economic output per head is £110,000 a year. In an important sense, these people are not living in the same country as the inhabitants of Gwent or the Wirral,
whose output is just a tenth of this.’
£35,000 — just a third of inner west London’s. And the third richest area? Inner east London.
‘If you flew in to City airport, visited Canary Wharf, and flew out again, you would think Britain was a tremendous economic success story. But London is like a Potemkin village for visitors;
its population does not represent the UK at all. Years of trying to help the regions keep up, with quangos and development agencies, have failed not just because their policies are duff. They
have been trying to fight the overwhelming gravitational attraction of the capital.’