Author Archives: Jake Perkins

Radical doesn’t have to be big

I am of the firm belief that we as a party must be radical– this is because we have to fight twice as hard, to get half as much press as the Conservatives and Labour. A great example of this was Layla Moran’s pledge to scrap SATs and OFSTED in 2018 which received very little press compared to Labour’s pledge to scrap SATs over a year later in 2019.

But radical doesn’t necessarily mean big, expensive and time-consuming: little policies can have a huge impact. Obviously, there are some major radical policies that we should explore and implement when the Lib Dems are back in power – regional government, electoral reform, overhauling the public sector – but these are not the only radical policies we should pursue. Quite often wonderful, efficient and successful radical proposals can be found at the local level.

A great example of these sorts of policies is municipal Wi-Fi networks in city and town centres, as they can give ailing high streets a new lease of life. There is a reason why many shops offer free Wi-Fi to shoppers, to attract and bring them in; and, in theory, the principal could be translated to town centres. The more time people spend on the high street, typically the more that they end up spending, helping the local economy. These networks can be integrated into existing infrastructure, and working in partnership with companies and organisations, can make these projects cost-neutral or even profitable. These networks have already been set up in 13 UK cities, such as Edinburgh and Bristol, and there is no reason why these couldn’t be rolled out further as part of a local – or even a national – initiative to get Britain connected and breathe life into our high streets and town centres.

Posted in News | 11 Comments
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