5) 1965, Greater London is formed from the counties of London and Middlesex, and parts of Essex, Hertfordshire, Kent and Surrey. People still talk about Middlesex all the time. Banging on: Middlesex, Middlesex, Middlesex. I fookin' 'ate it. Why? When Oasis started out, some geezer tried to book us for a gig in Middlesex. We drove round for ten hours trying to find the bloody county. It didn't exist. If you're reading this, pal, you owe us two hundred quid.
4) The establishment of local government in Canada under the Ontario system, instituted by the Municipal Act of 1849. Canada has always done local government well, and this act got things off to a flying start, like my idiot brother on two grams of Chilean Boogey Powder.
The way they divided things was like Oasis – you had the lower tier (Liam) of townships and villages, the small stuff, and you had the upper tier (me, obviously) which did waste disposal, land-use planning, and maintaining major roads. I've always had an interest in waste disposal. I once stopped off to see the Spittelau incineration plant in Vienna. It were shite.Tweet
3) 1974, a two-tier structure sweeps away single-tier areas such as county boroughs. Several counties disappeared and new ones were created. Everyone remembers where they were when the 1974 reorganisation kicked in. Everyone was out on the streets, on the doorsteps, talking.
We were kids and didn't take much notice but me mam was like: "This is the big one, the unitaries have gone, son." Wonderwall was about the new boundaries that sprang up. Don't Look Back in Anger is me telling people at that time, look, the old structure has gone but you can move on.
2) 1995-98, counties and regions are replaced with unitary authorities, responsible for all services in an area. In England, several of the more unpopular counties created in 1974 were abolished. If there's one place I hate more than Middlesex it's fookin' Avon. Avon? Avon? There ain't been an Avon since 1996, pal. So why do we still have the Avon Wildlife Trust, the Avon and Somerset Police, Avon Fire and Rescue ? It's mad and it does my head in. Can't handle it.
1) 1979, power is decentralised to provinces and towns in Egypt. Governors acquire more authority under Law Number 43, which reduces the administrative and budgetary controls of the central government over the provinces. This were a smart move – devolution before it became trendy. Say what you like about President Sadat, rest his soul, but Law 43 were a blinder. In an effort to reduce local demands on the central treasury, local government was given wider powers to raise local taxes.
Tragically, local councils came under pressure from central government over what to spend their money on, and they ended up getting bailed out by the centre. I like the idea of a mayor in every UK city 'cos it will resist this kind of fatuous imposition. I haven’t said this since 1997 but I'm mad for it.Tweet