Follow the Northern Research Group to find out how we are making a difference

The NRG’s Northern Agenda Pledges

With all of Westminster focused on the Conservative Party leadership election, NRG Chairman Jake Berry has called on the candidates to back the NRG’s Northern Agenda.

The front-runners to be our next Prime Minister were asked to commit to put Levelling Up at the heart of their government and throw their support behind four key pledges:

A Minister for the North: with direct responsibility for local growth and levelling up, who has a seat at the Cabinet table and the levers of a department for growth at their fingertips

Voxbridge: two brand new vocational institutions in the North of England which will be the national vocational equivalents of Oxford and Cambridge

Devolution: a right to devolution for all areas of the United Kingdom with a presumption in favour of Government agreement

Levelling Up Formula: to equalise and level up Government spending around our United Kingdom to ensure areas which have for too long been forgotten about by Whitehall are no longer left behind

Tom Tugendhat

“As Prime Minister, Levelling Up would be at the heart of my government. That’s why I’m signing the Northern Agenda Pledges.”

Tom has given strong support to the NRG campaign. In addition to his pledges to reverse the recent National Insurance rise and reduce fuel taxes, Tom has pledged to equalise funding regionally and roll out new technology colleges nationwide. With vocational training and regional funding two key priorities for the NRG, it is no wonder that Tom’s campaign attracted endorsements from many NRG members.

Rishi Sunak

“Great to work with Jake Berry on bringing more jobs and growth to the North. Pleased to sign up to the NRG’s pledges and commit to the Northern Agenda.”

Although his campaign has so far avoided laying out specific policy commitments, Sunak has given his strong backing to the NRG’s Northern Agenda. As Chancellor, his work on freeports and the UK Infrastructure Bank – which is making its first major investment in Teesside’s South Bank Quay project – has seen Sunak pick up support from Red Wall seats like Redcar. The decision to base the Treasury’s new hub in Darlington also shows a welcome commitment to decentralising decision making and regional investment.

Liz Truss

“I’ve just signed the The Northern Agenda.”

Running on the promise of a return to low-tax, pro-growth Conservatism, Truss has spoken of the need to deliver for the whole country – a key concern of the NRG. Alongside the offer of tax breaks to parents and people taking time off work to care for elderly parents, Truss floated the possibility of lower tax zones in parts of the UK. With devolution of tax powers to the regions a key demand set out by NRG Chairman Jake Berry at our conference earlier this year, clearly the NRG’s policy platform is finding traction across all wings of the party.

Penny Mordaunt

Penny Mordaunt MP

“We were elected on a pledge to Level Up the entire UK. It’s time to deliver.”

Alongside a focus on the cost of living crisis, Mordaunt’s leadership bid has embraced the Northern Agenda. Eye-catching announcements to quadruple the number of degree apprenticeships available in the North and double the number of skills boot camps are a strong endorsement of the NRG’s stance on vocational training. Mordaunt also pledged to deliver on Northern Powerhouse Rail and made a number of welcome commitments to regional investment through development corporations, new energy projects, and R&D investment.


Copyright 2022 Northern Research Group Limited. All Rights Reserved.

Registered in England and Wales number 13040881