Lib Dem manifesto 2017: Tim Farron's key policies

The Week highlights the party's main policies and spending proposals

Lib Dem manifesto launch
Tim Farron launches the Lib Dem manifesto for the general election
(Image credit: Jack Taylor / Getty)

The Lib Dems have put Brexit at the heart of their manifesto, vowing to hold a vote on the final deal that would include an option to remain in the EU.

Launching his party's policy document, leader Tim Farron said "people, not politicians" should have the final say over the terms of the final agreement.

"You should have your say on the Brexit deal and if you don't like the deal, you should be able to reject it and choose to remain in Europe," he said.

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Other key pledges include reducing the voting age to 16, offering sanctuary to 50,000 Syrian refugees, building 300,000 homes a year and scrapping the Tories' grammar school expansion plans.

Here's what the Lib Dems are promising.

The economy

The Lib Dems plan a £100bn package of additional infrastructure investment and a major programme of capital investment to stimulate growth across the UK. Additional funding will be provided to bring more private investment into renewable energy. The state-owned British Business Bank will be expanded and rail plans HS2, HS3, Crossrail 2 and an Oxford-Cambridge train line will go ahead.


The party's flagship spending commitment – £6bn a year for the NHS – will be funded by a 1p rise in basic rates of income tax. Tough action is promised against corporate tax evasion and avoidance to ensure big businesses pay their fair share. The Lib Dems would reverse the Tories' raising of the inheritance tax threshold.

Business and employment

The public sector pay cap will be abolished and business rates reformed. Corporation tax cuts will be reversed from 17 per cent back to 20 per cent and the national insurance threshold will be raised to the income tax threshold. The party also promises to introduce a "start-up allowance" that will give new firms £100 a week. Zero-hour contracts will remain, but workers will get more rights to move into full contracts.


Key promises include an extra month of paid paternity leave for new fathers and the extension of 15 hours a week free childcare to all parents of two-year-olds. There will be a long-term goal of 30 hours of free childcare a week for all parents with children aged between two and four years old.


The party has pledged to build 300,000 homes a year by 2022, including half a million affordable and energy-efficient homes. A new "rent-to-own" scheme is proposed, under which rent payments would contribute towards eventual ownership, making housing more affordable for first-time buyers. A "help-to-rent" scheme would offer people government-backed loans to help them pay a rental deposit. Housing association "right-to-buy" schemes will end and council tax on second and empty homes will be doubled.


The NHS and social care services will receive a £6bn boost. Mental health care and waiting times will be overhauled and access to talking therapies will be improved. The party also plans to limit the amount elderly people must pay for social care and end the public sector pay freeze for NHS workers.


Key pledges include plans to increase education spending by £7bn, scrap the planned extension of grammar schools and extend free school meals to all primary school pupils. Maintenance grants for university students will be restored and girls will get free sanitary products at school.

Brexit and immigration

As well as holding a referendum on the final Brexit deal, the Lib Dems are committed to protecting the rights of EU citizens living in the UK and retaining the free movement of EU citizens. They also plan to welcome 50,000 Syrian refugees over the course of the next parliament and reopen the Dubs scheme to take in 3,000 unaccompanied refugee children. Students will be removed from migration statistics and there will be no set immigration limit.

Security and defence

Arms sales to Saudi Arabia will be suspended and the Prevent counter-terrorism strategy will be scrapped and replaced. Police will get an extra £300m to tackle violent crime and all frontline officers will have to wear body cameras.

Benefits and pensions

The triple lock on state pensions will be protected and housing benefits for 18 to 21-year-olds will be reinstated. Winter fuel payments will be withdrawn from pensioners paying 40 per cent tax. The party is also pledging to reverse some of the welfare cuts introduced by the Conservatives, including cuts to universal credit and disability benefit.


The Lib Dems plan to scrap the so-called Snoopers' Charter, introduce a proportional voting system, allow 16-year-olds to vote and trial voting at weekends to improve turnout. The House of Lords will be reformed with a democratic mandate and donations to political parties capped at £10,000 per person a year.


The Lib Dems will create a legal, regulated market for cannabis, ensure that fibre-optic broadband is installed across the UK and introduce a new young person's bus discount card that will give two-thirds off to those aged 16-21. Diesel cars will be banned, fracking opposed, and 60 per cent of electricity will be generated from renewables by 2030.

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