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Responding to the release of the 'One Year On' report by the SSI Taskforce, Labour MP for Redcar, Anna Turley, welcomed the progress made in the past 12 months but said 'more needs to be done to help those still looking for work'.

Anna said:

"The challenges Teesside has faced in the past year following the closure of Redcar blast furnace and coke ovens have been huge. As a community we have pulled together and I would like to first thank everyone involved with supporting the workforce over the past 12 months, including local businesses, colleges and training providers, the trade unions particularly Community, employment advisers and staff in other support agencies, local charities including MIND, and of course the Taskforce who have led the local response.

"It is clear from the Taskforce's report that some progress has been achieved in this year, putting in place training courses, securing redundancy payments and the protective award payments, setting up a Safety Net Fund for those who need emergency financial support, subsidising local businesses to take on ex-steelworkers and helping others to set up on their own. I would also like to mention Teesside Steel Appeal which helped many families get through a difficult Christmas.

"I am pleased that many people have found new work, including the young apprentices who were just starting out in their careers when the steelworks closed. But there are many people struggling and much more needs to be done to create more job opportunities to replace the work we have lost. The task to manage the steelworks is also still ongoing and the land still remains in the hands of the Official Receiver on behalf of the Thai Banks who stand in the way of regenerating the site.

"In Parliament this week I have tabled a number of questions to ministers on the future of the site and the environmental challenge it poses, I've asked for guarantees that any unspent funds in the Taskforce pot will not be clawed back by the Government, and I've requested assurances that Teesside does not lose out from withdrawn European Union funding after Brexit.

"I am also meeting with Greg Clark, the new Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy this week, alongside council leader Sue Jeffrey, to discuss these issues further. I hope that as a Middlesbrough-born lad he will better understand the needs of our area, compared to his predecessor.

"The government's promise of a comprehensive Industrial Strategy needs to be translated into action, to support the rest of the UK steel industry in what continues to be a difficult global market and to support our other manufacturing industries to grow and expand.

"Teesside continues to have a lot of industrial potential and with the right support we can bring many more decent jobs to our area and truly regenerate our local economy. We are up for the challenge, I hope the government will be too."

 

Here is a list of the Parliamentary Questions tabled by Anna this week:

  1. To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to her answer on 15th July, what assessment she has made of the public health implications of slag and metal contaminants in surface and ground waters at the former SSI site, and if she will make an assessment of a) the likely cost and b) the timetable for remediation of these contaminants that is required to enable future investment opportunities on the site.
  2. To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what date his department will complete its longitudinal study into former employees of SSI UK, and if he will make a statement on the Government's outcome of the study.
  3. To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to ensure that unspent financial resources from the Redcar Taskforce will be spent in the local community and not revert to central government.
  4. To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what discussions he has had with the official receiver over the future of the former SSI UK site in Redcar since July 2016.
  5. To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to negotiate a financial settlement with banks in Thailand which have a controlling interest in the former SSI UK site to ensure redevelopment is possible in a timely manner for the benefit of the local community.
  6. To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to ensure that there is trade union representation on the Shadow Board of the South Tees Mayoral Development Corporation.
  7. To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the deliverability of the recommendations of the Heseltine report, and what timeframe his Department have allocated for their implementation.
  8. To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what steps he is taking to ensure that when the United Kingdom has left the European Union Teesside is not disadvantaged by the withdrawal of current European Union funding.

'A year on from the SSI crisis, more still needs to be done to help Teesside get back on its feet'

Responding to the release of the 'One Year On' report by the SSI Taskforce, Labour MP for Redcar, Anna Turley, welcomed the progress made in the past 12 months but...

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There was standing room only at tonight's public meeting on the future of Redcar High Street and the town centre. 

People had lots of really great ideas on how to revitalise our town which is exactly why we called this discussion meeting. It is your town and you have a clear idea of what kind of things you would like to see and what needs doing to improve the area.

Many of the suggestions people raised are practical and achievable, whereas others are much bigger ambitions and will take more time to explore. My team and I will now spend some time pulling everyone's notes together and then meet with the council and others to look at what happens next with this.

Some of the ideas will require work from the council and local politicians, for others the solution will involve working with local businesses, community groups and others. In other cases, funding bids will have to be put together.

This meeting isn't just a one off but the start of a conversation and we will keep coming back to you for further ideas and feedback.

Thanks to everyone for coming along and sharing your views and to Kath and the table leaders who did a really great job facilitating the discussion.

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Public share views on future of Redcar Town Centre

There was standing room only at tonight's public meeting on the future of Redcar High Street and the town centre. 

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Labour MP for Redcar Anna Turley has today welcomed the unanimous decision by Redcar and Cleveland planning committee to reject proposals to build 400 homes on land next to Flatts Lane Country Park. 

Anna called the decision a 'victory for local democracy' following a community campaign opposing this development.

At the committee meeting Anna joined other members of the community in speaking against the application. 

The final verdict of the committee was unanimously against.

Anna said:

"This is an excellent result and I would like to thank the planning committee for listening to the strength of opposition in the local community and to the planning officer’s recommendation.

"This is a victory for local democracy. Over 2000 people signed the petition against this development and many of those also submitted formal objections to the application. It is great to see their efforts paid off.

"New housing developments are always controversial and each has to be judged on its merits. This site, a much valued green space and wildlife habitat, was wholly inappropriate and housing development would have threatened the distinctiveness of the Eston Hills.

"I hope that the developer will take today’s clear message on board and not decide to appeal the verdict. We will continue to stand firm against development on this site."

Victory for campaign to stop housing at Flatts Lane Country Park

Labour MP for Redcar Anna Turley has today welcomed the unanimous decision by Redcar and Cleveland planning committee to reject proposals to build 400 homes on land next to Flatts...

Labour MP for Redcar, Anna Turley, has welcomed the removal of Redcar cemetery as a ‘PokeStop’ in the virtual reality game Pokémon GO.

Anna had previously written to the games’ developer about concerns raised by her constituents that the app was encouraging groups of users to congregate in the local cemetery in Redcar.

The developer has now confirmed the removal of Redcar cemetery from the game.

Anna said:

“I am pleased the developers of Pokémon GO have responded to local concerns and removed the cemetery from the game so that people can pay respects to their loved ones in peace.

“It is clearly a very popular game that has encouraged people to explore their surroundings which is great but there needs to be boundaries so that users can enjoy the game without upsetting others.

“The developer has been quick to solve the problem to make sure that is the case.”

Inappropriate ‘PokeStop’ removed from Redcar cemetery

Labour MP for Redcar, Anna Turley, has welcomed the removal of Redcar cemetery as a ‘PokeStop’ in the virtual reality game Pokémon GO.

Labour MP for Redcar, Anna Turley, has today (Wednesday 24th August 2016) welcomed the Redcar & Cleveland planning officers’ recommendation to refuse permission for an application to build 400 homes on land next to Flatts Lane Country Park.

Anna launched a campaign against this development, working with local councillors and the community to formally oppose the development and collecting over 2000 signatures.

The planners’ report notes that development at the site is not required to meet housing demand and that the longstanding boundary to development marked by the A174 would be breached, potentially encouraging further development down the hillside:

“There are alternative sites, both within and outside development limits, which are in more sustainable and less environmentally-sensitive locations and are more strongly related to nearby residential areas.”

“The proposals would remove the defensible boundary established by the A174, which helps to effectively contain the built-up area and distinguish it from the Eston Hills and, in doing so, could serve to encourage further housing development south of the Parkway at Normanby.”

They also warn of the detrimental impact on a vital green space and wildlife habitat:
“The site has an open aspect and tranquil character and, through mature woodland areas it effectively functions as a visual, atmospheric and noise ‘buffer’ between the Country Park and the built-up area. With 20,000 visits recorded at the bridleway in 2012, the application site is a popular access route into the Country Park and is part of a network of accessible urban fringe countryside in the wider Eston Hills area. In the event of development, site character would be lost, and its value as an environmental and community asset would be reduced.”

The final decision will be made by the planning committee. The application is scheduled to be heard at the next meeting of the Regulatory Committee on 1 September 2016, which commences at 10.00am at the Redcar & Cleveland Leisure and Community Heart, Ridley Street, Redcar TS10 1TD.

Anna said:

“This is excellent news and well done to everyone who joined the campaign in opposing this development. The arguments everyone made against this development have been vindicated in the planners’ report.

“I am pleased the council’s planning team listened to local concerns and have acted to conserve a vital green space and wildlife habitat.

“Their report is a clear and comprehensive statement that housing development on this land on Eston Hills is unnecessary and unsustainable and would damage an environment which is much valued by the whole community.

“The application now has to go before the planning committee who I hope will take the time to read the comprehensive analysis of this report, backed up by the strength of local opinion.”

Success for campaign against housing development at Flatts Lane Country Park as planners recommend refusal

Labour MP for Redcar, Anna Turley, has today (Wednesday 24th August 2016) welcomed the Redcar & Cleveland planning officers’ recommendation to refuse permission for an application to build 400 homes...


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