The Long View - 12/10/2010
Jonathan Freedland compares the present public spending review with the 'Geddes Axe' of 1921-22. Guests debate the means of achieving savings and accompanying political debate.
Jonathan Freedland compares the present public spending review with the 'Geddes Axe' of 1921-22.
In the early 1920s, in the face of mounting economic and political pressure, Prime Minister David Lloyd George committed the government to massive public spending cuts. Then as now it was a coalition government faced with the challenge of driving through savings. Lloyd George appointed the Geddes Committee to decide where the axe should fall.
Jonathan and guests draw on the lessons of the early 20s to debate the difficulties of delivering economies in public spending and the potential political fallout.
Producer: Laurence Grissell.
Image: Men carrying the Geddes Report on national expenditure on its arrival at HM Stationery Office, February 1922.