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For far too long, too many decisions about our future have been taken too far away by people who do not understand – and often do not care about – our area. As a former Member of Parliament, I saw up close the London-centric approach that has seen places like ours starved of investment and deprived of opportunity.

Devolution is our chance to change that.

Rather than decisions being taken by civil servants and politicians based in Whitehall and Westminster, who wouldn’t know the difference between Kirkby and West Kirby, let alone understand their needs. Instead, we are charting our own course, taking more decisions about our future at a local level, with the needs and priorities of our people front-and-centre.

In just a few years, we are already starting to see this bear fruit. From our £460m fleet of brand new, publicly owned trains, to the thousands of jobs and apprenticeships we have delivered in every part of our region, we are feeling the benefits of devolution.

But I know that I don’t hold the monopoly on good ideas. That is why we are changing the we way that we engage with local people. That is why I launched LCR Listens last summer.

Our biggest-ever public engagement exercise, LCR Listens was a way of bringing devolution to life, by going out into our communities to hear about your ambitions and priorities for your local area.

Over the course of the summer, we engaged with thousands of people across all of our boroughs, gauging opinions on a wide range of topics, including the climate emergency, transport, jobs and skills, the environment and housing and culture, to understand the future for our region.

People were proud of our distinct community spirit and keen to emphasise the importance of their priorities. They also told us where things need to improve, from creating more job opportunities, to improving the transport system that helps take people there.

This is not a one off. It is the shape of things to come. I am changing how we interact with the 1.6m people who make up the Liverpool City Region. I want our region to be the fairest, most prosperous region it can be – but we can’t do that without you.

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“I actually think Liverpool is pretty blessed when it comes to green space and nice, welcoming outdoor areas for people to use.”

“I want to be comfortable in my community through seeing others have opportunities to grow and be happy as opposed to neglected and stigmatised. A vibrant community!”

“I would like there to be a lot more long-term opportunities for my children as they grow up. The city has so much to offer and a lot of unrealised potential.”

One Day

As part of LCRListens, this report was developed by 20 diverse women from different sectors, geographies and communities, who donated One Day of their time on the 30th Birthday of the Women’s Budget Group  to rethink our industrial strategy.

    • 68% agree that their local area has a strong community spirit (Base: 545, Breaking Blue Street Survey, those commenting on housing)
    • 47% agree that their local area helps to connect local people together (Base: 407, Breaking Blue Street Survey those commenting on culture, facilities, leisure)
    • 87% of residents are likely to still live in their local area in 2-3 years’ time (Base: 603, Breaking Blue Street Survey)
    • 57% agree that their local area has good and useful public transport links/routes (Base: 305, Breaking Blue Street Survey, those commenting on transport)
    • 36% agree that their local area has good and useful cycle routes (Base: 305, Breaking Blue Street Survey, those commenting on transport)
  • 84% agree that their local area has accessible open green spaces including parks, woodlands, and green walking paths (Base: 300, Breaking Blue Street Survey, those commenting on the environment)
  • 64% agreed their local area offers good quality housing (Base: 545, Breaking Blue Street Survey, those commenting on housing)
  • 64% feel that the cultural life in the LCR is fantastic, good, or great, with loads on (Base: 228, #LCRListens Online Survey those commenting on culture)
  • 75% agree that their local area has good useful road links (Base: 305, Breaking Blue Street Survey, those commenting on transport)
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