The French Parliament appears to be on the brink of allowing mistakes in regional boundaries to be corrected by a vote in the départements directly concerned. The new law would remove the right of voters in the wider region to veto change – a right that, in effect, keeps folk locked in an administrative marriage to which they never consented.
It may come as a surprise to our readers that any right of referendum already exists in French regional law. We certainly don’t have it in England. As far as the London regime is concerned, we’re thick yokels who couldn’t punch our way out of a wet paper bag. Folk who wouldn’t know a credit default swap from a collateralised debt obligation, let alone be capable of defining our own identity.
So there’s no vote in prospect for Hampshire on whether it’s right for the historic capital city of Wessex to be in a different region from the majority of our shires. Nor in Cornwall on whether it’s right for a Celtic nation to be in an English region at all.