March 2013

March 2013

This is the thirty-first monthly report from Elizabeth Truss MP updating residents on her activities.

 

Local issues: Elizabeth has supported local councillors who have secured dot matrix signs that give real-time updates on the flooding of the Welney Causeway. She continues to work with Kings Lynn and West Norfolk Council about the problem of unpleasant smells in Walsoken.  She visited the charity World Horse Welfare at Snetterton to discuss the impending horse welfare crises, with up to 6,000 horses thought to be at risk. She met the interim Chief Executive of the East of England Ambulance Trust Andrew Morgan in Thetford to discuss the action that needs to be taken to address response times.

 

RAF Marham: After press speculation indicating the Joint Strike Fighter could be based at RAF Lossiemouth in Scotland, Elizabeth urged the Secretary of State for Defence that a decision be announced to locate the JSF at RAF Marham in Norfolk. Elizabeth has also requested an early meeting with the Minister responsible for the JSF, Andrew Robathan, so that a delegation of Norfolk MPs can emphasise the value of the JSF to RAF Marham and the wider community.

 

Transport: Elizabeth has pressed the issue of HGV movements through West Dereham with Transport Minister Norman Baker and has called for part-time HGV restrictions, implemented during the night, to be looked into. She was made Parliamentarian of the month by the road safety charity Brake for her work on helping secure improvements to the Broadend junction on the A47. Elizabeth supported Henry Bellingham’s question to the Prime Minister about future road funding in Norfolk, especially the A47.

 

Food and Farming:  Elizabeth has received a response to the concerns she raised with DEFRA ministers following the farming forum she hosted in Mundford. Ministers have confirmed that historical features are already included in HLS schemes. They also clarified that the Rural Development Program will come to an end this year, and that transition arrangements for 2014 are currently being negotiated with the European Commission.

 

Education: Elizabeth announced a new scheme for tax-free childcare for working families that will be worth up to £1,200 per child and will be introduced in autumn 2015. The scheme will be open to families with all parents in work, each earning less than £150,000 a year, and who do not receive support through tax credits. She gave a talk at the Institute for Education about reforms to A-levels. She replied to a debate in Westminster Hall about the design and technology curriculum. Elizabeth visited Feltwell primary school where she discussed her work as an MP with pupils. She also spoke to pupils from years 10 to 13 at Thetford Academy about changes being made to the GCSE and A-level curriculums.

Meetings and Events:  Elizabeth met Alison Thomas, Norfolk County Council cabinet member for Children’s Services, Bill Borrett, Leader of Norfolk County Council, Ann Marie Carrie of Barnados, Sir Michael Wilshaw of Ofstead and James Fothergill of the Confederation of British Industry. She attended the St Winnold's Parade and Breakfast in Downham Market.

Media:  Elizabeth has written articles for the Thetford and Swaffham Times, the Welney News, Signpost and the Eastern Daily Press. She was interviewed on BBC Look East, ITV Anglia, Daybreak, Sky News, BBC Breakfast, Channel 4 News, the Today program, Radio Norfolk and KLFM. She has appeared in articles in the Telegraph, The Times, the Guardian, the Daily Mail, Lynn News, EDP and the Fenland Citizen.

 

Upcoming Surgeries:

·         19th April Swaffham 16.00 – 18.00

·         17th May Thetford 15.30 – 17.30

·         14th June Downham Market 16.00 – 18.00

Please contact Fiona Walker on elizabeth.truss.mp@parliament.uk or 01842 757345 to arrange an appointment.

 

If you would like to contact Elizabeth, please write to her at:

 

The Limes,

32 Bridge Street,

Thetford,

Norfolk,

IP24 3AG