Britain

The British government wants more mayors and fewer councils in England

The goal is to streamline operations, but it's not yet clear how local government would change.

The Leicester lockdown highlights growing tension between national and local government in England

Locking down a single city has proved to be no easy business in the UK.

Could zoning help the UK build its way out of a housing crisis?

A new report suggests a plan to address failures in the UK housing market.

UK rail operators offer government a choice: Pay up, relax lockdown, or stop services

Train companies have received billions in subsidies since March.

British cities face a long overdue reckoning with racist monuments

Protesters in Bristol have opened the floodgates across the UK.

So what was actually in Grant Shapps’ latest transport masterplan?

More money for cycling – but much, much more for roads.

Seven thoughts on TfL’s bail out from national government

Something like this was probably inevitable.

What is happening with England’s mayoral elections?

Covid-19 has led the government to delay them for a year. There will be consequences.

Podcast: Graphs of doom

As lockdown continues, we chat with Donna Hall of the New Local Government Network.

Has the government just renationalised Britain’s railways?

No, but it’s probably killed franchising.

The Right To Buy is now the biggest threat to the Right To Buy, argues LGA

Could this be the thing that finally gets councils building?

Where should Crossrail for the North go?

Getting the crayons out.

Minimum Space Standards are making the housing crisis worse

Over consumption and reduced supply.

Podcast: Curtain raiser

Here come the locals.

“A remarkable achievement”: the environmental case for building HS2

As big a threat to ancient woodland as one 14 mile road.

The Tory manifesto promises to both increase AND decrease the rate of housebuilding

Do the Conservatives even have a housing policy?

This election will be won in towns – but its winner needs to focus on cities

The Centre for Cities on the election and everything after.

A Tory housing minister just said that it’s okay for you to spend half your salary on housing

I sometimes feel like they’re not taking this crisis terribly seriously.

Which is England’s second city?

Well, it all sort of depends.

Is it time to end road building?

I mean, obviously it is, yes.

The supply obsession won’t solve the housing crisis

The cast against more bloody houses.

The case for a new Healthy Homes Act

No, the TCPA isn’t only interested in new towns.

The mountain in North Wales that tried to stop the UK’s blackout

The magnetic mountain. One for the 1930s poetry fans, there.

There is one good thing to be said for the Beeching Axe

Rail’s lost is cycling’s gain.

Has Jacob Rees-Mogg just come out as a YIMBY?

Build more blasted houses, if you please.

Is all economics local?

Some are more equal than others.

England’s metro mayors are leading when Westminster can’t

The biggest shake-up of local government in a generation.

Three ways the geography of Britain’s exports has changed since 1841

From red brick factories to glass skyscrapers.

What should the new North of Tyne mayor’s priorities be?

England’s newest metro mayor will be elected next month.

Beyond Preston: How local wealth building is taking the UK by storm

Local wealth building is slaying the neoliberal dragon of trickle-down economics

Could twin towns bring Britain back together?

An anachronistic tradition could be the key to rebuilding post-Brexit Britain

Poorer cities have borne the brunt of austerity. Time to fix it, Chancellor

The chief executive of the Centre for Cities on its latest survey of urban Britain.

Let's be honest: Most London commuter towns are unbelievably dull

Lewis Hamilton was kind of not wrong.

Help to Buy is finally being scrapped. Here’s why it was a terrible idea

Bad news for developers, good news for first-time buyers.

Google is lovingly creating a time-capsule of Britain’s homelessness crisis

You’d think ministers would feel shame, but no.

Joe Anderson: Why I resigned from the Northern Powerhouse Partnership

The Labour mayor of Liverpool has a few choice words for Chris Grayling.

The Canal & River Trust: the local council hiding in charity’s clothing

Are live-aboard boaters’ rights being overlooked?

Why I wrote an alternative masterplan for Newport, South Wales

Not just another post-industrial city.

So is London really a drain on the rest of the country?

Twitter should be fun after this one.

Oh, great: young people face longer commutes for less pay

All aboard the Millennial Express.

Eight ways transport can put post-industrial towns back on the map

Transport AND post-industrial towns? Have you guys been looking at our Christmas list?

In defence of ‘brownfield-first’ housing policies

The co-ordinator of the Smart Growth UK coalition on the case for prioritising brownfield sites.

Was Barbara Castle the best transport secretary Britain ever had?

Fifty years of the landmark Transport Act.

Here’s a fantasy tram system for Truro (pop: 20,000)

No, YOU’RE wasting your life.

How does stuff work when you live on a tiny rock in the Bristol Channel?

I can see for miles and miles and miles and miles and miles.

Here’s the case for a national bus strategy

It’s about time one turned up.

Which English cities have the most fast food outlets? Here’s a map

Oh, a north/south divide, I am shocked.

Which UK cities will suffer most from the end of Freedom of Movement?

When do we get our £300m a week, exactly?

Households with solar panels are “effectively providing a subsidy to the commercial energy market”

A Labour member of the London Assembly calls for reform of renewable energy policy.

A brief tour of Britain’s least used stations

Empty tracks at empty stations.

Here’s why Britain should move its capital

London doesn’t need it.

A brief guide to all the terrible homes I have ever rented

Oh thank you Mister Landlord for this hole in the ground.

Polling shows how the politics of London differs from its suburbs

Outer London looks more like a northern town.

“Enforce the laws we have before creating new ones”: why landlords object to plans for longer tenancies

The policy director of the Residential Landlords Association writes.

Here’s why government plans for longer tenancies don’t go far enough

“If the landlords want somewhere to live, they can rent.”

5 ways London’s waterways will be shaped by the Canal & River Trust’s new mooring strategy

With an extra 1,500 boats expected by 2022, the report affects everybody’s access to the capital’s canals.

Under-represented and under-funded: London politicians can’t keep ignoring the south-west

Brenda from Bristol isn’t the only one who’s had enough.

The moors are literally on fire – so why does London still look the other way?

Some thoughts on Britain’s London-centric media.

Are German trains really better than British ones?

Questions to which the answer is maybe.

“Poverty” isn’t strong enough to describe the misery so many face. We’re back to destitution

The Labour mayor of Liverpool on the return of Victorian poverty.

No, crazy house price increases are not purely a London phenomenon

How have house prices changed in Britain’s biggest cities?

A very brief history of council housing

A review of Municipal Dreams, by John Boughton.

Britain introduces major new rail timetable, watches network instantly collapse into chaos – LIVE!

New rail routes AND highly visible screw-ups? Ambassador, you are spoiling us.

Podcast: Our Town

With Lisa Nandy MP.

The most important graph in British economics

Agglomeration disbenefits.

Podcast: The Post Mortem

So what did the local elections mean, then?

After a decade of austerity, councils need a new way to fund culture

The Labour leader of Cardiff council explains why he helped launch the Cultural Cities Enquiry.

Podcast: The unitary state

Was Celtic devolution a terrible idea?

So is Labour’s plan to make bus travel free for under 25s any good?

A decent policy, but a political masterstroke.

Ten myths about council housing – and one ask

A Labour councillor on what we get wrong about council housing.

Could a notorious prison offer an escape route from London’s housing crisis?

And what does it tell us about the next Labour government?

Oxford vs Middlesbrough: on the urban geography of Brexit

Something strange in the Thames Estuary.

“Ministers are ignoring the people who’ll deal with the fallout from Brexit”: The case for a second referendum

The Labour mayor of Liverpool makes the case for a second referendum.

“Homeownership has collapsed. Good riddance”

Time for the property renting dream.

12 things we learned by reading every single National Rail timetable

Perfectly normal activity for very reasonable people.

Podcast: Over the cliff

Uh, oh.

Can better planning fix the problems that led to Brexit?

The best of the 2018 Awards for Planning Excellence.

“The Midlands and the North of England are more exposed to Brexit than any other region in Europe”

There is no real representation from either the most exposed sectors or the most exposed regions

“Whatever the restrictions they face, the choices councils make are political ones”

The case for putting ideology back into local government.

Why 2018 is shaping up to be a key year for Britain’s cities

The leader of the Key Cities group on Brexit and after.

International students enrich cities like Coventry – but that could change

Does the UK really want to turn its back on £22.6bn?

Can local employment training help address the UK’s productivity puzzle?

A riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.

What’s in the government’s new rail strategy?

Reopening lines, reforming franchising.

Is Britain’s housing crisis a myth?

Is it possible that I’m... wrong?

Councils can help tackle the housing crisis – but government has to step up

The Labour mayor of Tower Hamlets on solving the housing crisis.

I spent an afternoon exploring Milton Keynes. Here’s everything I learned

An American city that got lost on its way to Ohio.

How Hull went from crap town to City of Culture

And what it says about Brexit Britain.

Why does Britain struggle to build power plants?

Blame the project managers.

To bring back trust in politics, Britain needs a local measure of GDP

Nobody noticed when the South Yorkshire economy collapsed.

Here’s how councils can jumpstart housebuilding

An ambitious package of policy reforms.

Does the Conservative party have a plan for urban Britain?

QTWTAI well you can probably guess.

The stench of unfinished business: how George Osborne’s financial reforms pose a threat to local government

Fiscal devolution has been forgotten, but the cuts remain on schedule.

The Highway Code is dead. We need a new movement code

Most Londoners don’t even drive.

Here’s why we should Build More Bloody Offices in Liverpool

This month’s letter from the Liverpool City Region

“It’s time to put local back at the heart of government”

The case for a new constitutional settlement.

Does the Labour party really have a plan for devolution to England’s cities?

The Centre for Cities boss on the opposition’s plans.

Can Britain cope with a fall in house prices?

Build more bloody financial implosions.

Podcast: The Arsonist and the Water Pistol

On Theresa May’s housing policies.

Where are the best and worst cities in the UK to make films?

Stop making films in Southampton.

“The Social Housing Green Paper is another delaying tactic to put off fixing the broken housing market”

It’s time to let councils build, says the Labour mayor of Hackney.

Brexit is an opportunity for cities to take back control

​The Labour leader of Leeds City Council on the future of Britain’s cities.

When will London adopt pay-as-you-go road pricing?

It’s later than you think.

Podcast: White heat

Or: why is York prettier than Wakefield?

Rebalancing the regions: How cities can help drive investment

Brought to you by Capital Real Estate.

In Dreamland: Can gentrification save Margate?

Oh we do like to be besides the seaside.

“Difficult decisions are now due”: the transport challenges ahead

The former shadow transport secretary on this parliament’s agenda.

What's in the in-tray of the new mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough?

Just Palmer it all off to someone else, I say.

The British housing crisis, in five charts

Or: why the Conservative party is in huge, long-term trouble.

Here are the UK’s most infuriating constituency names

The CityMetric election special!

Rural pubs are closing at an alarming rate

The heart of the community.

What are the issues in the Manchester mayoral race?

tl:dr: planning, congestion and care.

Where did England’s counties get their names?

Your (my) questions answered.

Who is running to be mayor of Greater Manchester?

Can anyone stop Andy Burnham?

The new green belt atlas shows quite how much space England has left for housing

A golf course is just a housing estate you haven't met yet.

So why was the housing white paper such a damp squib?

Personally, I blame the parents.

Depressing housing chart of the week: Help To Buy meant help the rich

I am shocked, shocked, by this revelation.

Why is Yorkshire so bad at exporting?

Answers on a postcard.

Where do Britain's graduates move to – and why?

Exploring the brain drain.

Sorry, northerners, but London’s tube strike is national news

“Not everyone lives in London you know!”

Where are the right places for England's new homes?

More importantly: where do we want them to be?

Why are private delivery firms so terrible?

Missing presents and parcels in bins.

Britain’s urban liberals should back devolution to “take back control”

The most centralised country in the you know the drill.

Autumn statement: Letting fees are awful, and Philip Hammond is right to ban them

A sad day for the noble guild of estate agents.

Welfare reform could price tenants out of social housing

The most depressing bit of housing research you'll see today.

Podcast: Northern soul

On football and culture.

Here's why building more houses isn't enough to bring prices down

Build more bloody non-market houses.

British cities are falling behind their European competitors – so what do we do?

Funny how this didn't come up in the referendum.

The vast majority of British cities are less productive than the European average

We need to stop telling ourselves we're a rich country.

The case for government-backed 100% mortgages

Borrowers of the world unite.

Property bargain of the week: own Harry Potter's house

Well isn’t that just wizard.

Where is England's fourth city?

A five-way battle.

If George Osborne wants to support the Northern Powerhouse, he should run for mayor of Manchester

With apologies to Mancunians everywhere, I am quite serious about this.

Want a Blue Plaque? Here's how to guarantee you'll get one

Commemorate good times, c'mon!

Mildly depressing housing chart of the week: summer doldrums

A new feature that'll appear in the regular slot of whenever we can be bothered.

Quiz: Can you name the British city from a chart of its economy?

Mmmm.... knowledge-intensive business services...

Place-making sounds woolly – but it’s the key to fixing a divided Britain

The Royal Town Planning Institute on why we need more, well, planning.

Five ways Britain’s industrial strategy can make the most of devolution

The powerhouse is dead – long live the powerhouse.

Corbyn is wrong: stopping London’s growth won’t rebalance the economy

If firms leave London, they won't head for the north.

Here's what Brexit will cost Britain's cities – and how they should respond

Over £30bn from the European Investment Bank alone.

Why is Southern Rail cancelling so many trains?

The mysterious vanishing railway.

Brexit: What's the most pro-European city in Britain?

In, out, in, out, shake it all about?

European cities are flying the union flag to campaign against Brexit

Our long national nightmare is over – or just beginning!

What would Brexit mean for British cities?

What could possibly go wrong.