Sir Keir Starmer laid out his post-pandemic vision for the economy today in a speech designed to fend off criticism from his own party that his treatment of the government has been too soft.

Starmer invoked Labour’s 1945 election victory, saying that the pandemic – like the war – had left the country with “the determination that our collective sacrifice must lead to a better future.” He added there could be no return to the “insecure and unequal” economy that existed before Covid, which he claimed was at least partly to blame for the country’s death rate and recession, both among the worst in the developed world.