Now a leading think tank for the north of England, IPPR North, has published analysis showing that despite all of the rhetoric, public spending on the North since 2019 has remained lower, and has grown less, than in other parts of the country.
It is three years ago this week since the new Prime Minister Boris Johnson stood on the steps of Downing Street and promised to “level up” the country.
How times change.
Much has occurred since that moment, not least the onset of a global pandemic which would be the defining task of any country’s leader.
But Mr Johnson has simply failed on levelling up, despite his promises to people in under-resourced corners of the country being what led to such a stomping landslide later in 2019.
When, as mentioned above, the leadership hopefuls come to Leeds this week aiming to set out their stall for the job of Prime Minister, they will need to have answers for the people who see levelling up as nothing more than sloganeering.
Both have links to Yorkshire - Rishi Sunak’s constituency is Richmond and Liz Truss went to school in Leeds – so audience members can expect them to take the issue of creating a more prosperous North of England to heart.
However, as we have suggested before, it is surely now time to remove the job of levelling up from political parties and make it the responsibility of a cross-party body that can work in earnest towards a country that provides for all.