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The state faces its greatest challenges since the war. The last thing we need is endless carping from No 10 about our excellent civil service

I led regeneration projects and know how to empower communities. It is deeply regrettable that the government seems so distracted from a true "levelling up" agenda

Photo: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire/PA Images

In some respects, the most depressing feature of the two dangers facing our country—Covid-19 and Brexit—is the persistent attempt from within Downing Street to heap most of the blame on the civil service.

As a minister for 17 years—13 in the cabinet—it has been my privilege to rely on civil servants. I then worked within or on the fringe of government as an adviser for another…

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