POWER in Britain is still dominated by the privately educated

Eton school, where the Prime Minister and many of his colleagues were educated

Power is still concentrated in the hands of the elite few, according to Sir John Major

POWER in this country is still dominated by the privately educated, according to Sir John Major.

The former Prime Minister has said it is “truly shocking” that the upper echelons of power are still dominated by an elite and said more needs to be done to encourage social mobility.

“In every single sphere of British influence, the upper echelons of power in 2013 are held overwhelmingly by the privately educated or the affluent middle class.

“To me, from my background, I find that truly shocking.”

The remarks will sting Eton-educated David Cameron who has faced claims that he has surrounded himself with people from similarly privileged family and educational background.

Sir John – who left school aged 16 with three O’levels – pinned the blame on social mobility on Labour.

He said it had left a “Victorian divide between stagnation and aspiration.”

Sir John, whose parents were former music hall performers, said: “I remember enough of my past to be outraged on behalf of the people abandoned when social mobility is lost.

“Our education system should help children out of the circumstances in which they were born, not lock them into the circumstances in which they were born.

“We need them to fly as high as their luck, their ability and their sheer hard graft can actually take them. And it isn’t going to happen magically.”

Sir John made the remarks in a speech to party members at the South Norfolk constituency party.

Addressing another area of concern, he also recommended a less-confrontational approach to the threat of the UK Independence Party.