Rishi Sunak has arrived in Manchester for what could be his last party conference before the next election.
Mr Sunak will not make his main speech until Wednesday, however to mark the start of the conference, the government has announced £1.1bn of funding aimed at regenerating high streets and tackling anti-social behaviour. The money will be shared between 55 towns - including Torquay, Rotherham and Kilmarnock - with each getting £20m over a decade. (1)
However, the prime minister faces pressure from across his party over issues including tax cuts and HS2.
Mr Sunak has repeatedly refused to say if the HS2 will run from Birmingham to the North West.
Cabinet ministers Kemi Badenoch and Suella Braverman also want a debate on whether to leave the European Convention on Human Rights.
(1) if my calculations are correct then that’s the equivalent of £2m per year. Rotherham Council’s budget proposals for 2023/24 include a revenue budget of £302m – the money the Council uses for providing day-to-day services – and capital expenditure of £611m across 2023/24 to 2025/26, which is for one-off costs on equipment or investment in longer-term developments. (2) So £2m won’t go far enough to make any difference.
The conference finished with even Prime Minister Rishi Sunak arguing “there is the undeniable sense that politics just doesn’t work the way it should” and “Westminster is a broken system”. The case the ERS and partners were making at conference is the best way to make politics better serve voters is to accurately represent them in parliament, and that only happens with a fairer proportional voting system.