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Reality Check: Is North of England getting a big boost?

Quote from Downing Street press release: As part of the visit to the North West, the government is also announcing a cash boost of £556 million for the Northern Powerhouse.

The claim: The government is announcing a cash boost for the North of England.

Reality Check verdict: The money has already been announced twice.

Prime Minister Theresa May is to continue former chancellor George Osborne's plans to create a Northern Powerhouse.

On Monday, she held a cabinet meeting in Daresbury in Cheshire, where she unveiled her new, more interventionist industrial strategy.

Details on where exactly the Northern Powerhouse cash will be spent are new, but the £556m total is not.

Last March, George Osborne said a total of £1.8bn would be awarded in a round of "growth deal" funding to Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) across England.

LEPs combine businesses, councils and other bodies to decide regional spending priorities, on things like city centre regeneration projects and innovation funds for businesses.

It is part of a wider scheme aimed at boosting the post-Brexit UK economy and creating jobs, with a particular focus on investment in science, research and innovation.

Mr Osborne's replacement, Philip Hammond, announced in November that £556m of this pot would go to the North of England. It was announced again in the Autumn Statement later that month.

As well as the North's share, Mr Hammond allocated £492m to London and the South East, £392m to the Midlands, and smaller amounts to other regions.

Northern leaders say their cities are stuck with weak economies because of underinvestment, while the South East takes the lion's share of public cash.

The government says the Northern Powerhouse will go some way to rectifying the imbalance. In this case the North of England is getting 13% more than London and the South East.

But other areas of government spending favour London over the North.

The capital will receive six times more money on transport spending per person over the next five years, according to research by the Institute for Public Policy Research.


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