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Saturday 22 October 2011

MP’s Report

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Edward Timpson MP

Friday 21, October 2011

Welcome ...

Welcome to this my 99th electronic news bulletin.

Broadband in Cheshire East

How fast is your broadband connection?

The answer is probably not as fast as it should be or needs to be. A recent study by Ofcom revealed that less than 1% of UK homes have a super-fast broadband connection, considered to be at least 24Mbps.

Whether it's for domestic, business or educational use, a super-fast  broadband connection has become an essential requirement for local residents and businesses here in Crewe & Nantwich. Yet there are still too many gaps in coverage across our area. For businesses, particularly small or medium sized and those increasingly run from home, a super-fast broadband connection is crucial if they are to compete, develop and expand. If we want to attract more knowledge-based, digital and creative industries to Crewe & Nantwich, we need a strong and reliable telecommunications infrastructure. But contact I have had with a number of local businesses suggests this has been seriously lacking.

For domestic users this high speed technology can have enormous social and educational benefits. For example, Cheshire East Council have developed a hugely successful web-based scheme called DemenShare that allows dementia sufferers and their carers to access and share support. Similarly research has shown that children with digital inclusion see an increase of 25% in GCSE grades per subject. There are environmental benefits too, not least the impact it would have on the easing of traffic congestion. That is why I, along with other MPs in Cheshire, called and took part in a debate in Parliament recently to push the case for achieving 100% super-fast broadband coverage across Cheshire by 2015 so we can help drive economic growth and improve the quality of life for local people.

The Council were awarded a £3.24 million grant in August to help roll out super-fast broadband, but we are still some way from the total £40 million investment needed to deliver full coverage across the county. The reward for doing so is huge: the creation of around 5 1/2 thousand jobs and almost £200 million in growth to our local economy year on year. The faster we can get there, the better.

Muammar Gaddafi's Death

Speaking in Downing Street moments after the official confirmation of the dictator's death, the Prime Minister said he was "proud" of the role Britain played in Nato airstrikes to protect Libyan civilians after the uprising against Gaddafi's rule began in February.

He said it was a time to remember Gaddafi's victims, including those who died when Pan-Am flight 103 was bombed over Lockerbie, Wpc Yvonne Fletcher who was gunned down in a London street and all those killed by the IRA using Semtex explosives supplied by Libya.

David Cameron also said the "many, many people" who had died at the hands of "this brutal dictator and his regime" should be remembered and he paid tribute to the bravery of the Libyan people who helped to liberate their country. Furthermore that the people in Libya today have an even greater chance after this news of building themselves a strong and democratic future.

Please remember, you can always contact me directly if you have any questions for me.

You can forward the bulletin on to your friends and family, who can sign up themselves by clicking here for my website.

Best wishes 

Edward Timpson
Member of Parliament for Crewe & Nantwich

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I have recently ...

  • Held a drop-in surgery in Nantwich Library
  • Participated in the House of Commons Debate on Broadband in Cheshire East. Read more here
  • Attended a meeting of the All Party Group on the West Coast Main Line to hear from the four companies bidding for the West Coast Mainline franchise how they would seek to significantly improve Crewe Station as part of any franchise they deliver
  • Went to a drop in to find out how speech and language therapy can transform lives hosted by the Royal College of Speech & Language Therapists
  • Supported the Seahorse Swimming Club sponsored swim raising funds local child, Nathan Hill's new wheelchair at Crewe Swimming Baths

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Photos & Video ...

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Edward hosting a reception in Parliament with Tim Loughton MP, Minister for Children and Families to mark the 40th Anniversary of Adoption UK

You can view all my photos and video at

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To sign Edward's Welfare Petition click here

To Sign Edward's Immigration Petition click here

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Community News

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Vote for your favourite community project and they could win funding from NatWest Community Force

By applying to CommunityForce hundreds of local charities and projects stand to win an award of £6,000 each, with the winners decided by public vote in the autumn. Vote: From 26 September – midday 24 October everyone will be able to vote for their favourite projects. The three projects with the most votes in each CommunityForce area will win the awards.

You have three votes so vote for groups such as 35th South West Cheshire Scout Group (here), The LATH (Looking After The Homeless) Group (here) and The Georges Community Centre (here).

Do you have community news to share? Email me and it could be here too!

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Edward Timpson MP fights for Crewe rail jobs

Crewe & Nantwich Guardian

LOCAL MP Edward Timpson met with representatives of Bombardier in Crewe in Parliament last week to discuss the current situation facing the company.

Mr Timpson accepted and then delivered almost 900 signed postcards to the Secretary of State for Transport calling for the decision toward the Thameslink contract to Siemens be reversed.

In supporting the work of Bombardier in Crewe Mr Timpson said: "I have made my views very clear both in the House of Commons and elsewhere that this is the wrong decision for the UK rail manufacturing sector and have questioned the Secretary of State personally on the possibility of revisiting the matter.

"I have also called for a change in the way the UK interprets EU procurement rules so that in this country, as happens in France, Italy, Germany and many other parts of Europe, UK based businesses such as Bombardier can bid on a genuinely even playing field.

“It is no coincidence that the Italian police drive around in Fiats.

"I will continue to work closely with Bombardier at all levels to help raise awareness of their well established and much needed engineering experience and expertise in the UK and to help bring other opportunities to their Crewe site."

Mick Roberts, the Crewe site's union representative, said: "We highlighted the government's decision to export the Thameslink order was wrong and that as a result the future of UK train building industry is now under threat.

"Mr Timpson advised us he has been critical of the decision not to build the Thameslink trains in the UK and has worked with Bombardier to this end.

"We urged Mr Timpson to step up his protest for Thameslink trains to be built in the UK.

"We also discussed the failings in the procurement process for rail and the need to ensure that changes are made that ensure the fullest support for the domestic based bid is provided."

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Edward Timpson MP helps Crewe charity

Crewe & Nantwich Guardian

CREWE and Nantwich MP Edward Timpson met with representatives of the Crewe Parkinson’s charity last week to deliver a cheque for the money he raised by running the London Marathon.

Mr Timpson raised £1,111 for the charity through sponsorship for running the marathon in April.

The Crewe branch of Parkinson’s UK offers information, friendship and support to local people with Parkinson's, their families and carers.

They also organise regular events and social activities from St Michael's Church Hall on Ford Lane in Crewe, as well as holding a support group in Winsford.

Mr Timpson said: “Running marathons is a great way of raising money for local charities, not only are they a good way of getting fit but they also help people and draw people’s attention to a cause.

"The challenge of running 26.2 miles seems slightly easier knowing that every step goes towards a good cause.

“It was a pleasure to pound the streets of London for Crewe Parkinson’s knowing that the money I raised is going towards helping those suffering from Parkinson’s in Crewe and Nantwich.”

Michael Kinsey, chairman of the charity’s local branch, said: “Our work is totally dependent on donations, and we have been thrilled that Edward Timpson chose our branch to benefit from his amazing efforts in the London Marathon.

“Vital funds raised for research by Parkinson’s UK means we can continue work to find a cure and improve the quality of life for people affected by Parkinson’s.

“Being involved with the branch has really helped a number of people in the area, not least by providing the opportunity to speak to people in a similar situation.”

For more details on the charity visit or call 01270 560680.

Mr Timpson will be running next year’s marathon for local charity CLIMB (Children Living with Inherited Metabolic Diseases), of which his wife Julia is a patron.

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MP Edward Timpson challenges Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg over residents rights regarding planned Gypsy site in Crewe

Crewe Chronicle
CREWE and Nantwich MP Edward Timpson has quizzed Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg over the rights of residents as the fight against the proposed Coppenhall Gypsy site moved to Westminster.

The Conservative MP demanded to know how the Government will ensure “the views of residents are heard loud and clear when local authorities seek planning permission for Gypsy and Traveller sites”.

Mr Clegg said the Localism Bill gives ‘a raft of new rights’ for communities to make their views known on planning matters.

Mr Timpson challenged the Deputy PM just days before attending Saturday’s public meeting organised by the action group Crewe Against Traveller sites.

Cllrs Derek Bebbington and Peggy Martin also addressed the meeting in a field at the White Lion near Warmingham and attended by more than 250 people.

They heard from group chairman Glen Perris that more than £2,000 has been raised to start a fighting fund to stop the proposals for a 12-pitch permanent site.

Cheshire East Council is seeking planning consent for the site to house 24 trailers and vehicles together with an amenity block with washrooms and kitchen.

Mr Perris said he’d been in touch with a solicitor in Kent who had persuaded a council to abandon proposals to build a permanent site near people’s homes.

Mr Timpson has already met Cheshire East leader Wesley Fitzgerald to express the strong concerns of residents.

Mr Timpson said: “The sheer numbers of people who gave up their Saturday afternoon to attend demonstrates the strength of feeling on this issue.

“I felt it was important that I attend to explain how I can support them and to answer any questions they had at a time of great uncertainty and concern.”

See pages 8 & 9 for more on the controversy and pages 16 & 17 for views.

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Foster film makes Crewe debut

Crewe & Nantwich Guardian
A FILM designed to inspire future foster carers and adoptive parents to step forward is making its debut in Crewe this week.

The 20 minute film, commissioned by Cheshire East Council, recounts the moving experiences of individuals and couples who have opened up their homes to young people in need.

MP for Crewe and Nantwich Edward Timpson will be a special guest at the event next month, when he will talk candidly about how his own parents became foster carers when he was just a child.

Other VIP guests will include chief executive of Cheshire East Council Erika Wenzel, Mayor of Cheshire East Councillor Roger West, Councillor Hilda Gaddum, regional director of British Association for Adoption and Fostering Erika Amende and regional director of Fostering Network Helen Clarke.

Councillor Gaddum said: “Many young people in local authority care are in desperate need of a good home.

“Adults who can provide either a foster carer home or a permanent adoptive home are in short supply.

“If you think you can offer stability, love and fun to a young person, I would urge you to get in touch with us.

“Fostering is often a temporary arrangement and many children and young people return to their own families.

“It can be done on a full or part-time basis and ranges from short-break care to a few months or even a long-term basis.

“Adoption is a permanent arrangement, whereby a court transfers all powers of parental responsibility to the individual or couple.

“Becoming an adoptive parent or a foster carer is not a decision to be taken lightly - but the rewards can be immense.”

Latest figures for Cheshire East show there are 456 foster children. Of those, 231 are with foster carers and the remainder are under local authority care in a range of settings.

The film will be screened at the Reel Cinema, Phoenix Leisure Park, Crewe on Wednesday October 5 at 11am.

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Cash pledged to block plans for gypsy camp

The Sentinel

THOUSANDS of pounds have been pledged in only a week for a community to pay for professional help to block plans to open a gypsy camp.

More than £2,000 has been collected to start off a fighting fund to stop the proposals for a 12-pitch permanent site in picturesque countryside on the outskirts of Crewe.

And a protest meeting attended by nearly 400 people at the weekend heard how a legal expert with a track record of defeating similar schemes in the south of England had already been approached.

Cash will also be raised by collecting old clothing for recycling and through personal donations.

The row is over a Cheshire East Council planning application for the plot off Parkers Road and Kent Lane in Coppenhall to house 24 trailers, 24 vehicles and an amenity block with washrooms, a kitchen, dayroom and laundry.

But the protesters, who met in a field at the White Lion pub yards from the site on Saturday, were warned by campaign leaders to dig in for a long struggle.

Describing how any approval could be contested by a judicial review even before the council went out to public consultation, Crewe MP Edward Timpson said: "You need to be in this for the long game.

"This is the biggest public meeting I have seen in my constituency and the strength of feeling is such that we must get as much support at every level.

"Travellers have rights, but so do residents and we have to keep pressure up to make sure we have the best chance of succeeding."

He revealed a formal planning application was likely to be submitted next month with objections allowed until February when a decision is expected.

An approval could be then reviewed by a high court judge under a procedure which would be costly for the fighting fund.

Glen Paris, chairman of the week-old Campaign Against Traveller Sites, said he had been in contact with a solicitor in Kent who had already persuaded a council to scrap proposals to build a permanent site near people's homes.

He said: "It is vital we stick together as we fight this on a number of grounds such as location, lack of infrastructure, the creation of an accident blackspot on the main road and not enough capacity in local schools."

Hearing that 11 alternative sites in East Cheshire had been turned down by the council as a possible location in favour of Coppenhall, audience member Kenneth Powell said to applause: "Every reason they have given for not taking it to those places applies here too – right down to the newts we have in the field."

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5 ways to contact Edward Timpson

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