Sheffield man starts petition calling for north to join Scotland

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More than 20,000 people have signed a petition - which appears to have been started by a Sheffield man - calling for the north of England to break away from the “London-centric south” and join Scotland.

The online petition states that the deliberations of Westminster are becoming “irrelevant” to people in the north, who are not understood by “the endless parade of old Etonions lining the frontbenches of the House of Commons”.

Created by “Stu Dent”, who gives his location as Sheffield, the petition is aiming to reach 25,000 signatures.

Numbers swelled on the day that Chancellor George Osborne used a speech in Manchester to promise a ’revolution’ in the way England is governed, with elected mayors presiding over far greater powers in major cities to help them rival London.

Earlier this week David Cameron appointed James Wharton, MP for Stockton South, as “Northern Powerhouse” minister to oversee the vision.

The petition was started last year in the run up to Scotland’s independence referendum but appears to have received a boost since last week’s general election, when Scotland voted overwhelmingly for the SNP and its anti-austerity agenda.

It states: “The deliberations in Westminster are becoming increasingly irrelevant to the north of England. The northern cities feel far greater affinity with their Scottish counterparts such as Glasgow and Edinburgh than with the ideologies of the London-centric south.

“The needs and challenges of the north cannot be understood by the endless parade of old Etonions lining the frontbenches of the House of Commons.

“The north of England should join the newly independent Scotland and regain control over its own destiny. We, the people of the north, demand that in the event that Scotland becomes independent the border between England and the New Scotland be drawn along a line that runs between the River Dee and the mouth of The Humber.”