In Defence of Local Politics



To the foreign observer it might seem odd that so little attention has been given to the politics of local government in Britain. After all, a fully-fledged system of representative bodies responsible for important community services has been with us for three-quarters of a century and has something of a world-wide reputation as being a model of its kind. It is particularly esteemed for its representative aspects, especially for the maturity and probity of its elected councils, and the wide scope they are alleged to offer for democratic participation in policy-making and administration. But even if it lacked these particular characteristics, our local authorities have some claim to attention, since they are responsible for a sizeable slice of government in this country, spending over £3,000 million annually, and employing over two million people.


Vote Behaviour Local Politics Local Election Labour Party National Politics 
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  1. 4.
    See F. Bealey, J. Blondel and W. P. McCann, Constituency Politics (Faber, 1965), for a full discussion of this point.Google Scholar
  2. 5.
    Nicholas Deakin (ed.), Colour and the British Electorate, 1964 (Pall Mall Press, 1965).Google Scholar

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© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 1967

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