Home

Recent Activity

This week in Parliament I have been working to amend the Government’s proposed new laws on fracking. I have put down an official amendment which would mean that no fracking wells should be drilled within 2km of any town or village. I am also supporting an amendment calling for a complete pause on fracking until there has been a full assessment of the economic, health, environment and climate risks. MPs will be voting on these next week. My mind remains open on the pros and cons of fracking but I am absolutely clear that our water aquifers must be completely protected and most significantly, we need more evidence before fracking goes ahead.

It does not help build public confidence in fracking when the Government refuses to publish full details of its own investigations into gas extraction. Having been asked to do so by a number of local people, I wrote to the Government and asked questions in Parliament about a report that was published last year which was almost completely redacted – and still the Government refuses to publish the complete report. On issues as important as fracking transparency is absolutely crucial and it’s why I have been working to bring the Government’s plans to a halt until more evidence is provided.

One of the many misdeeds that bankers have committed over the past few years is the mis-selling of Payment Protection Insurance, commonly referred to as PPI. Many people were mis-sold PPI when they took out loans and mortgages and I am sure that many Bassetlaw residents are still unaware that they could have a claim. Thousands of claims are still waiting to be dealt with and I would encourage anyone who isn’t sure to contact me on 01909 506200 as I can provide you with a copy of the letter you can send to your bank or mortgage company that asks them to investigate whether or not you were mis-sold PPI. If you find that you have had money deducted without your knowledge I can then assist you with the process and unlike the claims handling companies, you will get 100% of your money back.

I have also been contacted by many people over the past few months who are concerned about one of the most significant trade agreements ever made between the EU and USA. The ‘Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership’ or TTIP for short has some concerning aspects to it – for example, one clause could allow private companies to sue the Government (which is effectively us, the taxpayers) if a change in policy results in their company being negatively affected. Fortunately last week in Parliament MPs agreed that there needs to be greater scrutiny of the deal.

Literacy Volunteers is a local charity which helps children in primary schools develop an interest and love for reading. Volunteers chat with the children, read with them and play fun and word games to help the children grow in confidence and improve their literacy skills. A number of local schools would like to make use of these services but more volunteers are required. If you are aged between 18 and 80, have a regular half day free each week and can attend training on 3rd and 10th February please call my office on the number above for further details.

Worksop Guardian: 23 January 2015

This week in Parliament I have been working to amend the Government’s proposed new laws on fracking. I have put down an official amendment which would mean that no fracking...

I have tabled two Parliamentary motions which could force the Government to change its current policy on fracking. 

The amendments will go before the House of Commons next Monday when the Government’s Infrastructure Bill is debated.

The first amendment I have put forward would ensure that no fracking wells are drilled within 2km of any town or village.

I am also backing a motion for fracking plans to be put on hold until there has been a full assessment of the economic, health, environment and climate risks.

I remain open-minded to the benefits and drawbacks of fracking in the UK. However, I am absolutely clear that our water aquifers must be completely protected and we need more evidence before fracking can go ahead.

I will also continue to call on the Government to publish the full copy of its own investigation into the effects of fracking. I have written to the Minister and put forward Parliamentary questions calling for greater transparency on this important issue and the Government’s reluctance to provide this will only create further suspicion.

 

Fracking vote in Parliament

I have tabled two Parliamentary motions which could force the Government to change its current policy on fracking. 

Must be elections coming up as I have picked up a rumour  being circulated outside Sainsbury by someone that there are plans to build Europe’s largest incinerator in Worksop and that I have been involved in this. Total rubbish. I usually ignore idle gossip but this time I felt that given the seriousness of the allegations I should set the record straight.

There are no planning applications to build an incinerator in Worksop currently being processed. A plan was scoped out over a year ago but has not yet been submitted for any decision.

If any application is put in then I will be opposing it. Incinerators in towns like this would never be acceptable. Even in rural Elkesley I advised local people, objected to and spoke against an incinerator that was proposed and it was stopped. If there is ever a planning application in Bassetlaw then I will be opposing it and neither I nor any other local councillor has had any involvement in proposing, supporting or assisting any incinerator. I trust that this puts the record straight.

Last week Tesco finally announced that they would not be building their new store on the Carlton Road site, something that local residents have readily welcomed. I backed their campaign against the original application several years ago and am glad to see that after all this time they will not have their privacy intruded upon by a supermarket car park. I am tempted to say to them: told you so. It was always the wrong site for a supermarket of this size.

I suspect that Tesco will now propose housing for the land, which they own - so far they have not revealed their hand to anyone and we will have to watch this space. I remain concerned that levels have been altered on the land so that in some places it overlooks local houses and we also lost some beautiful trees on the North Notts College site so I will be taking a strong interest in any future planning applications.

This ability to build houses anywhere remains an absurd snub to local democracy. MPs from all parties keep raising the issue as Eric Pickles, Government Minister but he has repeatedly over-ruled local councils and public opinion to force through unpopular housing. Every attempt to force a vote on this has been thwarted. So much for localism. In my view, each community should have the final say on how many houses are built and where they should go, not a Government Minister from Essex who has no knowledge whatsoever about our area.

I hosted 150 victims of child abuse at Westminster this week - bringing together for the first time in one place all the groups campaigning on this issue. Without question this scandal is being ducked by a failure to hold public inquiries so that the truth can come out and those responsible held to account. In Nottinghamshire we need to see progress on our own County and City public inquiry, including into allegations of files being destroyed in the past. I am pleased to see some positive results recently from police and Social workers dealing with those coming forward and I welcome the professionalism which is emerging. I do not intend to drop the campaign on national child abuse and I am sure you would be horrified if I did.

 

Worksop Guardian: 16 January 2015

Must be elections coming up as I have picked up a rumour  being circulated outside Sainsbury by someone that there are plans to build Europe’s largest incinerator in Worksop and...


View More Activities

Liquid syntax error: Error in tag 'subpage' - No such page slug cookies