Next year will mark the 50th anniversary of the moment when Keith Joseph and Margaret Thatcher founded the Centre for Policy Studies – and transformed Britain.
The CPS, said Thatcher, was ‘where our Conservative revolution began’. And today, it is where it continues. The CPS still fights for a high-growth, low-tax, small-state Britain built on personal and economic freedom. In recent years, we have proposed and delivered policy after policy to make that happen. Increasing the personal income tax allowance. Transforming literacy via synthetic phonics. Pension freedom. Free ports. Full expensing. Street votes. Higher standards in universities. Tougher border control. Expanding Cambridge. Entrepreneurs’ visas. Stamp duty cuts.
Yet today, those values – and those achievements – are under threat. Britain faces a low-growth, high-tax, big-state future. Which makes the work of the CPS more important than ever, as it makes the argument for a brighter, more dynamic future for our country.
To mark our anniversary, we will be hosting a series of events and publications, starting with the 2023 Keith Joseph Memorial Lecture, delivered by Professor Niall Ferguson. The theme of that anniversary programme will not just be celebrating the past, but asking how we can apply the same radical spirit to Britain’s future.
As part of our anniversary work we have also welcomed Lord Frost, who will be working with the think tank as a Research Fellow to work on a major policy project intended to echo ‘Stepping Stones’, the seminal report prepared by John Hoskyns and Norman Strauss for Margaret Thatcher in 1977. This report, based in part on Hoskyns’ famous ‘wiring diagram’ from 1974, was the result of intense debate and discussion within the Centre for Policy Studies and its circle of policy thinkers. It systematically mapped out the problems facing Britain, set out how they were interconnected, and proposed an order of priorities and methodology to deal with them. Lord Frost, working with the CPS and other advisers, will prepare an updated version of these reports for the challenges facing Britain today, to be published in Spring 2024.
To find out more about our anniversary plans, or to discuss how you can support our work, please contact [email protected].