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I'd like to place on record my sincere thanks to Iain Spittal our retiring Chief Constable.

He has been an exceptional Chief of Police and has made a superb contribution to our community tackling some serious challenges head-on against a backdrop of the most challenging of financial settlements from a Government fatally wedded to a its damaging programme of cuts to our public service.

Iain has led a number of initiatives often in partnership with key players in the Cleveland area and he leaves our Police Service in the best shape for the challenges ahead.

I wish him and his family all the very best for a well-earned retirement.

 

Cleveland Chief Constable announces retirement

I'd like to place on record my sincere thanks to Iain Spittal our retiring Chief Constable. He has been an exceptional Chief of Police and has made a superb contribution...

Individuals in Middlesbrough (and members of their family or others living elsewhere) may find the following information helpful.

British Steel Pensions Trustees have provided the following details of official pension roadshows and the independent helpline being provided for Scheme members.

Roadshows

Middlesbrough, MM Banqueting and Conferencing Suites, New Street, Thornaby-on-Tees, TS17 6BU

(http://www.mmfunctions.co.uk/)

Monday 6 November, 10am-12pm, 2-4pm, 7-9pm

Tuesday 7 November, 10am-12pm, 2-4pm, 7-9pm

 

There will also be multiple sessions at each of the following locations.

Motherwell, Motherwell Concert Hall, Windmillhill Street, ML1 1AB

Thursday 19 October, 10am – 12pm, 2 – 4pm, 7 – 9pm

Scunthorpe, The Bath’s Hall, Doncaster Road, DN15 7RG

Tuesday 24 October, 10am – 12pm, 2 – 4pm, 7 – 9pm

Sheffield, The International Hall, Ponds Forge International Sports Centre, Sheaf Street, S1 2BP

Thursday 26 October, 10am – 12pm, 2 – 4pm, 7 – 9pm

Friday 27 October, 10am – 12pm, 2 – 4pm, 7 – 9pm

Corby, The Core at Corby Cube, George Street, NN17 1QG

Tuesday 31 October, 10am – 12pm, 2 – 4pm, 7 – 9pm

Walsall, Stadium Suite, Walsall Football Club, The Banks Stadium, Bescot Crescent, WS1 4SA

Friday 3 November, 10am – 12pm, 2 – 4pm, 7 – 9pm

Chester, Chester Racecourse, CH1 2LY

Thursday 9 November, 10am-12pm, 2-4pm, 7-9pm

Port Talbot, Princess Royal Theatre, Civic Centre, SA13 1PJ

Tuesday 14 November, 3-5pm, 7-9pm

Wednesday 15 November, 10am-12pm

Newport, The Newport Centre, 1 Kingsway, NP20 1UH

Thursday 16 November, 3-5pm, 7-9pm

Friday 17 November, 10am-12pm, 2-4pm, 7-9pm

Doncaster, The Dome, Doncaster Lakeside, Bawtry Road, DN4 7PD

Tuesday 21 November, 10am-12pm, 2-4pm, 7-9pm

Cardiff, Mercure Cardiff Holland House Hotel, 24-26 Newport Road, CF24 0DD

Monday 27 November, 11.30am-1.30pm, 3.30-5.30pm, 7-9pm

This Cardiff meeting will only go ahead if the date proves useful to members. If members register for it, they will be informed as soon as possible whether it’s happening.

Helpline (run by a body independent of either the Trustees or Tata Steel). The helpdesk numbers are:

If you’re a pensioner, phone 0808 168 8709 (or +44 (0) 1206 585 361 if you’re calling from outside the UK) If you’re not a pensioner, phone 0800 085 7264 (or +44 (0) 113 823 1344 if you’re calling from outside the UK)

British Steel Pensions official roadshows

Individuals in Middlesbrough (and members of their family or others living elsewhere) may find the following information helpful. British Steel Pensions Trustees have provided the following details of official pension...

Here is my Radio Tees Breakfast Show interview on 16th October 2017 backing the campaign by Teesside University Students and Teesside Law Clinic to overturn the injustice of the 'same roof rule' which denies compensation to victims of sexual abuse soley due to the abuse occuring before 1st October 1979.

BBC Tees interview "Same Roof Rule"

Here is my Radio Tees Breakfast Show interview on 16th October 2017 backing the campaign by Teesside University Students and Teesside Law Clinic to overturn the injustice of the 'same...

The announcement of 'up to £20m' being committed to a Carbon Capture and Utilisation demonstration programme is of course welcome and of great interest to Teesside but in terms of the scale of the task, it simply won’t cut it.
The size of the challenge is illustrated by the Conservative’s decision in 2015 to pull the rug from under their £1bn CCS programme. 
A Labour Government will commit £2.25bn to develop the industry over the next Parliament and Teesside has a huge role to play and a massive opportunity.

CCU demo project of great interest to Teesside but must be seen in context

The announcement of 'up to £20m' being committed to a Carbon Capture and Utilisation demonstration programme is of course welcome and of great interest to Teesside but in terms of...

This is my radio interview on Radio Tees (3rd Oct 2017) responding to the announcement by Philip Hammond at the Tory Party conference of just £300m for transport in the north.

 

Tory transport investment for north embarrassing

This is my radio interview on Radio Tees (3rd Oct 2017) responding to the announcement by Philip Hammond at the Tory Party conference of just £300m for transport in the...

The current model for rail is not fit for purpose. It is corporate welfare on an industrial scale and it will end under a Labour government delivering public ownership.

Let’s take our Railways back.

 

 

 

Conference Speech 26/9/2017 Video

The current model for rail is not fit for purpose. It is corporate welfare on an industrial scale and it will end under a Labour government delivering public ownership. Let’s...

I'm honoured to be Member of Parliament for Middlesbrough and privileged to be Shadow Transport Secretary, charged with the task of bringing our railways back into public ownership.

Conference, our policy of public ownership of the railways is not about ideology or dogma. It’s very simple: You cannot control what you do not own.

The motion before you is an excellent contribution to the debate as we develop our party policy on rail and I congratulate Doncaster Central CLP and Peterborough CLP for bringing it forward.

The composite is quite right to highlight safety and accessibility as two of the most important issues demanding the closest possible attention.

Tragic events of recent months in London and Manchester and ongoing security threats only increase the need for safety and vigilance across public transport.

And at a time when race hate crimes and sexual assaults on our railways are on the rise, the role of onboard staff in keeping the public secure is more important than ever.

Many passengers need assistance to board trains, so we need a properly staffed rail network because access to public transport should be a right, not a privilege.

The next Labour government’s publicly owned railway will be safe, accessible and properly staffed. 

Fares are unaffordable and unsustainable, having risen twice the rate of wages since the Tories came to power. Next years increase of 3.6% is the yet another kick in the teeth for passengers - and Labour will not tolerate this.

Our Labour Government will use the savings gained from public ownership to reduce fares and simplify the system and introduce smart, flexible and integrated ticketing.

Public ownership of rail is not just about rail. Investing in transport connects people and businesses. It creates jobs, boosts skills and generates growth.

But this Tory government simply doesn’t get it. It has promised electrification of Transpennine, Great Western and Midland Mainline for half a decade. But Chris Grayling has betrayed these promises, pulling the plug on investment, condemning much of our country to second-class rail services, denying millions the benefits of long promised improved connectivity.

The Tories now celebrate the advantages of trains switching from electric to diesel when the line runs out. They now tell us electrification is ugly. That didn’t seem to stop the investment in London of Gospel Oak to Barking.

If heavier, slower, polluting diesel trains aren’t good enough for the South East, they aren’t good enough for the North, the Midlands or Wales either.

Conference, Rail investment is critical to our economic strategy and closing regional divides.

This is why we will deliver rail electrification and expansion across the whole country, including a Crossrail for the North – linking our great Northern towns and cities – and upgrading the network in the South West as John McDonnell reaffirmed.

The Tories have failed rail passengers. They have failed the public servants who work on the railways. It is failing us all by perpetuating a model that leaks public money at every turn and subsidises rail travel in other countries at our expense.

But I’m being unkind. The Tories do believe in state owned railways….but they believe in the German, French, Dutch, Italian and other countries running our railways.

Conference, isn’t it simply bizarre in the extreme that the only nation state on the planet that is prevented from running the railways in the UK is…… the UK itself.

Take a step back conference. What is rail for? The purpose of the railways is to move people and goods around affordably and sustainably. It couldn’t be clearer.

Every person in this hall knows that the current model for rail is not fit for purpose. It is corporate welfare on an industrial scale and it will end under a Labour government delivering public ownership.

Let’s take our Railways back!

I urge you to support this motion.

Thank you.

Conference Speech - Lets take our railways back

I'm honoured to be Member of Parliament for Middlesbrough and privileged to be Shadow Transport Secretary, charged with the task of bringing our railways back into public ownership. Conference, our...

Fire safety and building defects at Roseberry Park must be addressed quickly. Three Valleys Healthcare Ltd must ensure these specialist mental health facilities are repaired and re-opened without undue delay and I would welcome them publishing a robust schedule of works to make this so.

Patients face moves potentially some distance from their families and I want to firm up on assurances they will face the minimum of disruption and are kept well informed during any closure period.

The ‘construction defects’ are not specified and the fire safety systems have only been given a temporary fix. This is, to say the least, disappointing in a building constructed only seven years ago.

I welcome the fact that action is being taken but I stress again remedies must be timely and put patients best interests first and foremost.

Fire safety and building defects at Roseberry Park must be addressed quickly

Fire safety and building defects at Roseberry Park must be addressed quickly. Three Valleys Healthcare Ltd must ensure these specialist mental health facilities are repaired and re-opened without undue delay...

Comprehensive plans have been reported today to improve the road system across Middlesbrough.

The public will certainly not forgive the Government if they fail to adequately fund Middlesbrough Council’s plans to relieve road congestion – plans which have been many years in the making.

I understand the exasperation some people feel about traffic flows in Middlesbrough, especially along stretches of Marton Road. I also know of the consultations and hard work that has been going on in the background by Councillors and council officers to address bottlenecks and publish the proposals which we see today.

Full credit is due to Middlesbrough Council for pulling together many years of work covering a great number of engineering works and it is now over to the Government and Transport Ministers to stump up the cash as part of the overall package of funding to bring these schemes to fruition.

It's now over to Government to back town's road plans

Comprehensive plans have been reported today to improve the road system across Middlesbrough. The public will certainly not forgive the Government if they fail to adequately fund Middlesbrough Council’s plans...

I have no doubt that Cleveland Police Officers will be aghast to learn from the bizarre and offensive proclamation by the Prime Minister that they have received a 32% real term increase in their pay since 2010. The reality is that they have actually suffered a real terms loss of £6,000 a year loss!.

We should all be supporting our Police Officers and demanding that they and other public sector workers receive the pay increase that they deserve and so desperately need. Sadly this is yet another blow to our Police Service.

This Government is in perpetual denial about the fragility of our essential public services and they need to wake up to the very real risks to community cohesion that their policy failures now pose.

Another blow to our Police and essential public services

I have no doubt that Cleveland Police Officers will be aghast to learn from the bizarre and offensive proclamation by the Prime Minister that they have received a 32% real...

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