The unexpected Coalition Government, which combined the Conservative Party and the small Liberal-Democrat Party, both of which in different ways had been critical of New Labour's regionalism, led to an anti-regional rhetoric which resulted in the abolition of the main regional delivery and administrative bodies. One might conclude then that regionalism is effectively dead and that the 'so-called' regional functions, the loss of which our regional elite respondents were previously fearful, have either ceased, or been transferred, mostly to central government.

Instead, the Coalition government sees LEPs, cities and Localism as the main economic drivers of growth. We have considered the current condition of LEPs in this chapter. In the following two chapters we look in detail at the other two specific Coalition Government policies arising out of this initial legislation. In the next chapter we look critically at the notion of City Deals and City Regions. Then in Chapter 6 we examine what is meant by Localism in theory and in practice.


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