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TRCH - Caitlin Moran

Independence for the East Midlands?

18 September 14 words: Robert Shore
Forget Scotland. The real question is whether the East Midlands should go for independence

(Video produced by Robin Hood Media, first shown on BBC Sunday Politics East Midlands)

Everyone knows what they think of the North and South of England – the clichés abound. But what about that big, anonymous stretch of land in between: the Midlands? Despite being home to around a third of the English population, it’s a region that seems to have neither purpose nor identity.

Yet the Midlands have powered most of English – and not just a little of world – history. The Industrial Revolution was forged there, as were the ideals of the Land of the Free and the theory of evolution. Shakespeare, world literature’s greatest genius, was born in the Midlands, as were Margaret Thatcher, Dr Johnson and Robbie Williams. It is the home of Robin Hood, Walker’s crisps, Marmite, Raleigh bikes and the balti. And that’s not all: music, fashion, sport – almost every domain of contemporary life has been reinvented and remoulded in the stoically self-effacing lands squeezed between the self-mythologising South and the narcissistic North. Why, we even have the Midlands to thank for the modern idea of sex.
As the nation obsesses over whether Scotland should be an independent country, Robert Shore raises a more pertinent question to our region, and asks: should the East Midlands annex itself from England...
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