Meeting Jan 26th
North East No
Days since England had its own Parliament
Launched in the Stranger's Dining Room,
at the House of Commons, Westminster.
20th October 2004
The need for a Constitutional Convention
The current Government has granted devolution to Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. A vote has been given to each of these three distinct parts of the United Kingdom and the citizenry have been able to express their democratic free will in a referendum.
No such referendum has been offered to the people of England.
The proud and historic nation of England has not been allowed any meaningful devolutionary debate. Its people have not been consulted on the options for devolved government and its people have not been asked to vote for the option they would prefer.
The Government's solution to the devolution question (as it relates to England) is to press ahead with the break-up of England into 9 artificial European Regions and to remove her "nation" status. The term now used by the Government to describe the structure of the United Kingdom is - "The Nations and regions of Britain" with England being the "Regions".
The English Constitutional Convention (ECC) is a growing coalition of political and non-political organisations who believe that the people of England have a democratic right to participate in, and decide upon, the form of devolution that best suits the needs, sensibilities and majority will of the people living within England.
It has become increasingly clear that the English are now being treated "differently" to all other parts of Britain; this includes differences in terms of consultation, democracy, public expenditure and parity of esteem.
It is clear that, if the political system is to retain credibility with the people of England, then the voice of her people must be heard and a proper democratic debate around England's future and her nationhood be properly constituted and supported by all those who seek to govern in her name.
The ECC welcomes active participation from all those groups and institutions who subscribe to the principles of the ECC and who believe in the importance of the democratic process, a free vote and an open debate.
A series of follow-up meetings and conferences will be organised following the launch of the ECC, and invitations to submit proposals and ideas for the future of English devolution can then be heard. The work of the ECC is to help to inform the public and impress upon the Government the need to consult widely, before implementing significant structural constitutional change without the people's consent.
The principles of the English Constitutional Convention
The case for the National Self Government of Scotland and Wales has been established and enacted. In the interests of democracy and of justice the same principle should be applied to England.
The purpose of the English Constitution Convention is to promote the debating and the making of proposals for a consequentially appropriate, just and fair, constitutional settlement for all the people of England, and which protect their principles of justice and liberty.
The founders of the English Constitutional Convention believe that England should have:
"Parity" as a distinct nation within the UK
"Recognition" of England's Nation Statehood
"Equality" of respect as being culturally and historically distinct
"Fair Funding" to remove discrimination against England
The ECC will provide the FORUM to debate the various options for devolution by encouraging all those who have an interest in the future government of England to
put forward coherent proposals which can be developed into a "consensus"
on the options. These options can then be put forward to the people of
England for their endorsement via a referendum in the same way as Wales
and Scotland have been given a vote on their respective Assembly and