It's a win up north - why we deserve a fair deal | Jabbering Journo column

Rail is top of the Northern Powerhouse agenda
Rail is top of the Northern Powerhouse agenda

If you were to walk up to Beryl in the street (while she was doing her shopping and looking forward to a pub tea and a glass of wine) and mention the Northern Powerhouse, she would probably berate you for swearing.

Because let’s be honest it’s just another example of government nonsense buzzwords that are meaningless to most of us.

All we want to know is that we in the north are being treated equally to those in London and the south. After all, we pay our taxes.

We know the north is fantastic and not just because we like gravy with our chips, boast a remarkable heritage and know what a ginnel is.

Northern pride is real and it’s justified.

Most of us would not even contemplate giving up the rolling hills, seashores and friendly, bustling cities, towns and villages of the north for the complexities of anonymous and expensive London.

Why would we?

But we also do not want to feel like second-class citizens, ignored by government policy-makers and palmed off with second-rate, rickety, trains, planes and transport links, or omitted from opportunities to make an impact on the international stage - but mainly we want to get on an unbroken, undelayed train, drive on maintained roads and to ensure there are jobs for our children and opportunities to build careers that will allow them to buy homes and raise families.

We don’t want them to feel they have to leave Lancashire to shine and live a full life.

The pot of gold at the end of the rainbow does not only exist in a London postcode.

We have everything here but the connectivity is broken - it needs mending.

So Northern Powerhouse is a government nonsense word but it also puts a label on Beryl’s wish that her grandson could commute to Manchester without having to stand up, queue and face massive delays - every day.

It voices her desire that the same grandson will not move off to the bright lights of L0ndon because there are no opportunities to better himself round here and because she wants to know her eventual great-grandchildren.

It says look at us - we are fabulous -underestimate and sideline us at your peril.

#powerupthenorth

POWER UP THE NORTH Read about our campaign here