The Restructuring of Local Government in England and Wales

  • Peter John
Part of the Government beyond the Centre book series


This chapter looks at the ways in which the relationship between central and local government has altered in England and Wales since the late 1970s. It examines the growth in the power of central government and the reduction of local government’s policy-making role. The theme of the paper is that more recent changes have seen a more concerted move by central government to restructure local government, changing the way local authorities exercise their functions so that local government reduces the services it directly provides. With the aim of enhancing consumer choice, central government has tried to increase the numbers of service providers. Local government is to be moved to an ‘enabling’ role, organising other institutions to supply services. Central government wishes to increase accountability of local government to the electorate and the consumer through the community charge and the new roles for schools and housing authorities. If the aims were realised, the changes would significantly alter the role of local government.


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Copyright information

© Peter John 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter John
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Policy Studies InstituteLondonUK
  2. 2.Nuffield CollegeOxfordUK

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