The lost decade

By Michael Burton | 09 November 2021
  • Michael Burton

Had Theresa May not botched the General Election in 2017 we might now have the Department for the Left Behind, Housing and Communities or the Department for the Just About Managing rather than the Department for Levelling Up. But whatever the political soundbites the focus was the same; how to remove the regional economic and social inequalities that led to Brexit and which both Boris Johnson’s Government and Theresa May’s pledged to remove.

My latest book From Broke to Brexit: Britain’s Lost Decade (Palgrave Macmillan) aims to explain the background to the referendum vote and levelling up agenda. It is an account of one of the most extraordinary decades in modern British political history, the first of the 21st century, a period beginning with the aftermath of the worst recession since the 1930s and concluding with the referendum and the Theresa May and Boris Johnson governments. The permanent loss of economic growth from the recession and the accompanying decline in living standards from 2010 led the years being dubbed by some economists as ‘the lost decade.’

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