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Tim Loughton's Parliamentary Newsletter
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Newsletter - August 2016
 
Dear Constituent

Welcome to my first constituency e-newsletter after the summer recess and there is quite a lot to fit in. I have included in this edition an update on next steps for the A27 upgrade work following a meeting of the A27 Working Group led by Tom Wye this week where we sought to clarify a lot of the misinformation that has been circulating following public meetings by a new residents’ group in Worthing from which MPs and Highways England were specifically excluded. I will be announcing the date for a public meeting that we will be organising and which will include Highways England who are responsible for carrying out the work and can provide rather more reliable information without the need for a lot of scare stories which have understandably been concerning constituents.

I have also included an update on the latest developments in the appalling rail service which continues to drag on but where I am pleased to report a much more ‘hands on’ approach from the new Transport Secretary.

You may have seen reports in the press that I have taken over as interim chair of the Home Affairs Select Committee after the self-inflicted demise of Keith Vaz. I have given a link to our latest report in an article included here.

As usual if there are any issues you would like addressed in future issues then please do let me know. If you would like to get hold of me directly you know how to do so and I have details of forthcoming surgeries and street surgeries though I would point out that it will be councillors only at Lancing and Worthing this Saturday as I will be leading a Select Committee trip to Washington.
 
Best wishes
 
Tim Loughton MP
Member of Parliament for East Worthing & Shoreham
Surgery Dates

Advice Surgery
(To book an appointment, call: 01273 757 182 or email: loughtont@parliament.uk)

Friday 7th October - Southwick

17:00 - 19:00

Friday 14th October - Lancing

17:00 - 19:00

Friday 28th October - Worthing

17:00 - 19:00

Street Surgery
Unfortunately I will not be able to attend this Saturday's street surgery however councillors will be present. 

Lancing Street Surgery

Lancing Children's Centre

Saturday 17 September 2016

10am - 12pm

Worthing Street Surgery

Worthing Town Centre

Saturday 17 September 2016

12:15pm - 2pm

In Westminster
EU referendum update
 
The campaign was fought, the vote was held, turnout was high, and the public gave their verdict in a free and fair referendum.
 
The Prime Minister has been clear that there must be no attempts to remain inside the EU, no attempts to rejoin it through the back door, and no second referendum. The country voted to leave the European Union, and it is the duty of the Government to make sure that this happens. Brexit means Brexit and we are going to make a success of it. The Prime Minister and the Government will provide strong leadership as Britain begins negotiations to leave the European Union and forge a new role for ourselves in the world. The decision to leave the EU is not one that needs to be taken by Parliament because the legal right to do so is encapsulated in the Royal Prerogative, which is bestowed upon the Prime Minister by Her Majesty The Queen.
 
Nobody should believe that the negotiation process will be brief or straightforward. It is going to require significant expertise and a consistent approach. However, with Theresa May as our Prime Minister, there is no one better to provide the strong leadership that Britain needs for this serious and complex task. She will lead our negotiations for leaving the EU, but given the scale of the task, she will be supported on a day-to-day basis by the newly created Department for Exiting the European Union, which is dedicated to securing the best deal for the UK. The Department will specifically be responsible for:
 
  • the policy work to support the UK's negotiations to leave the European Union and to establish the future relationship between the EU and the UK; 
  • working closely with the UK's Devolved Administrations, Parliament, and a wide range of other interested parties on what the approach to those negotiations should be; 
  • conducting the negotiations in support of the Prime Minister including supporting bilateral discussions on EU exit with other European countries;  
  • leading and co-ordinating cross-government work to seize the opportunities and ensure a smooth process of exit on the best possible terms. 
 
The Government is not going to provide a running commentary on every twist and turn of these negotiations. Nonetheless there are clear principles from which the Government  is starting the process. As we conduct our negotiations, it must be a priority to regain more control of the numbers of people who come here from Europe, but also to allow British companies to trade with the single market in goods and services. While the ability to trade with EU member states is vital to our prosperity, there is clearly no mandate for a deal that involves accepting the free movement of people from Europe. The Government will set out further detail in due course and I will be happy to engage with constituents as this process progresses, just as I did with my series of Tell Tim public meetings around the constituency in the run up to the June 23rd referendum.
GSK's Complete the Cycle
 
I helped GSK promote its Complete the Cycle  programme on 8th September at Victoria Station. As a leader in the research and development of respiratory medicines, GSK recognises that respiratory inhalers and their disposal in landfill are harmful to the environment. They believe that it is possible to deliver sustainable business growth while protecting the resources we need for the future and safeguarding the environment. GSK is offering this scheme as a value-added service to facilitate the responsible recycling and disposal of all inhalers – not just those manufactured by GSK.

They have been piloting this scheme in the UK since February 2011, and up until the end of February 2015, 425,600 inhalers have been collected, giving a CO2 equivalent saving of 3,017 tonnes.  By working together with patients, pharmacies and healthcare professionals, they aim to reduce waste and greenhouse gas emissions, moving towards a more environmentally sustainable treatment of respiratory disease.
Save Kids' Content

Save Kids’ Content UK is a new campaign to revive British children’s programming and ensure that there is a diverse and healthy mix of UK-made children’s content on new digital platforms. Spending by public service broadcasters (PSBs) on producing children’s programming has plummeted over the past fifteen years, dropping by a staggering 93% since 2002.

Since the passing of the 2003 Communications Act, which downgraded children’s content from Tier 2 to Tier 3 programming, children have fast become one of the most underserved demographics on public service television.

I was very happy to speak at an event they recently held in Parliament and look forward to working with them on this campaign as we go forward.

For more information about Save Kids’ Content UK, please contact William Pett by:
Telephone 0203 267 0074
Email William.Pett@jbp.co.uk
GTR Update
 
Letter to the Secretary of State for Transport – Fare Prices
During August, news surfaced that GTR were planning on raising the price of fares and there was despair and anger from constituents. Upon hearing the news I wrote to the Secretary of State for Transport, Chris Grayling MP, to ask that train fares for GTR customers be frozen until a normal service resumes. This announcement followed months of delays, cancellations, station skipping and industrial action – I said that any increase in fare prices would be insult to injury.

You can read the full letter here:
https://www.timloughton.com/news/tim-loughton-mp-writes-transport-secretary-asking-train-fares-gtr-be-frozen

Meeting with the Secretary of State of Transport and Rail Minister

I received two very helpful letters from the Secretary of State for Transport, Chris Grayling MP, and the Rail Minister, Paul Maynard, respectively, following a round table meeting with them and other parliamentary colleagues, whose constituents are being terribly affected by Southern's abysmal service, at the beginning of September.

The letters help clarify a number of points, including how the £20m additional funds will be spent, the Government's position on the RMT strikes and the plans for sorting out this mess and resuming normal services. You can read them both here: https://www.timloughton.com/news/letters-secretary-state-transport-and-rail-minister.

I was impressed how active both the Secretary of State and the Minister had been since they took over their brief in the summer. I was pleased to hear that none of the £20m fund will be going to Southern Rail and will instead be used on infrastructure spending, which is organised by Network Rail. I was also pleased to hear that the Transport Secretary was open to investing more into the infrastructure in order for normal service to resume.

GTR Adjournment Debate

Meanwhile, this week, I took part in an Adjournment Debate, led by my colleague Henry Smith MP, on GTR. You can see my contribution to the debate here: https://youtu.be/HV6lysF1nPA.

It is worth considering that the debate took place at 10pm and Adjournment Debates are not particularly well attended. You can read more about Adjournment Debates here: https://www.parliament.uk/about/how/business/debates/adjournment/.

GTR Consultation

Along with other MPs, I also attended a meeting with GTR’s CEO, Charles Horton, this week, where we were updated on proposals for redesigning the current rail timetable. GTR has launched an extensive Consultation which sets out proposed changes to the timetable which will be operated by GTR in 2018 following the completion of the Thamleslink Programme.
When the Programme completes in 2018, it will – according to GTR – transform north-south travel through London; journeys will be improved with trains every two to three minutes through central London at peak times. This will be the biggest timetable change on the routes affected in a generation. They are therefore seeking feedback from any interested parties who may be affected by the proposed changes to help shape the new pattern.

The consultation will be the earliest a train operator has released proposals in advance of the planned changes allowing sufficient time for meaningful and on-going engagement.

A range of improvements are proposed, aimed at simplifying the network by introducing new and revised routes, improving journey times on a numbers of routes through changes to calling patterns by protecting journeys that are important for passengers. Our proposals include a complete redesign of the network.

A number of train services currently operated by Southern will, by 2018, be transferred to Thameslink creating new south to north journey opportunities to Cambridge, improving connectivity with future Crossrail trains at Farringdon, national and international connectivity at London St Pancras International.

Brighton Mainline
  • From 2016, new and longer Class 700 trains introduced on Thamleslink services
  • Continuation of all day train service between Brighton, Gatwick Airport, Central London and St Albans, Luton and Bedford.
  • From May 2018, new, direct all day train service between Brighton, Gatwick Airport, Central London and Stevenage and Cambridge.
West Coastway and Arun Valley
  • From 2018, new direct Monday to Friday peak train service between Littlehampton, Worthing, Hove, Central London, St Albans, Luton and Bedford.
  • No significant changes proposed for Monday to Friday and Saturday daytime services
  • Proposals for some additional Monday to Friday morning peak services to London Victoria
  • Proposals for revised Sunday services designed to improve journey times
East Coastway
  • Improved frequency of train services between Brighton and Lewes
  • Proposals for daily train service at Cooksbridge
  • Proposals for improved Monday to Friday peak journey time improvements between London, Eastbourne, Bexhill and Hastings
  • Options to address significant overcrowding between Brighton and Ashford International
For further information and how to respond please visit our websites: gatwickexpress.com, southernrailway.com and thameslinkrailway.com.
Home Affairs Select Committee - Interim Leader - 06-09-2016
On becoming acting chair of the Home Affairs Select Committee
 
I have been appointed as the acting chair of the Home Affairs Select Committee (HASC) in the interim, replacing Keith Vaz, until a new Labour chair is elected.

There was no time to stand on ceremony as the same day Keith Vaz resigned we were receiving evidence from the Immigration Minister, who revealed that the UK was building a wall in Calais to fortify the existing fence structures there. The following day, the HASC took evidence from the new Home Secretary, Amber Rudd MP, which covered a wide range of topics including the new chair of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse. You can see the full session with the Home Secretary here: goo.gl/WJAiHj


Due to House of Commons rules it is a designated Labour chair for the Home Affairs Select Committee in this parliament. The speaker will be putting in motion the election for the new chair, and this will happen some time after the conference recess.

We have recently released a report looking into Female Genital Mutilation, you can see the full report here: into http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201617/cmselect/cmhaff/390/39002.htm?utm_source=390&utm_medium=fullbullet&utm_campaign=modulereports

You can read more about the work of the HASC here: goo.gl/v7nJOf
Join the campaign #FixBritainsInternet

I am encouraging broadband users in East Worthing and Shoreham to take the opportunity to have their say over the future of the UK’s internet by joining the campaign to #FixBritainsInternet.

Over the last few years, internet users all over the country have suffered poor speeds and an even poorer service as a result of BT’s underinvestment in the national network, Openreach.

Ofcom has set out their plans to improve Openreach, and they have asked the public for their views in a once-in-a-decade consultation. While the proposals are a step in the right direction, I believe that more needs to be done to make sure that his constituents have the digital future they deserve.

One of the most common complaints in my inbox or postbag each week is about the quality of broadband. A reliable broadband connection isn’t just a ‘nice to have,’ it is an essential part of everyday life – and a real headache when something goes wrong.

Our community has put up with slow speeds and a second-rate service for too long. This is largely due to BT’s underinvestment in the national network, Openreach, which is owned by the BT Group. 

We’ve had to fight incredibly hard to get so-called ‘superfast’ broadband installed in the constituency, and there’s still a ‘postcode lottery’, with some businesses and households unable to get acceptable speeds when their next-door neighbours can.

The UK’s digital economy is more important than ever before, and we cannot afford to wait any longer for the broadband infrastructure Britain needs. Even with a £1.7bn taxpayer subsidy, too many people are still subject to a postcode lottery when it comes to receiving a fast, reliable broadband service.

To sign up to the campaign, and tell Ofcom directly that you want better broadband for your families and businesses visit:www.fixbritainsinternet.co.uk.

Tim Loughton MP wears it pink in Parliament in aid of Breast Cancer Now

I have shown my support for women affected by breast cancer by dressing up in pink and encouraging all of you to take part in the UK’s biggest, brightest and pinkest fundraiser, wear it pink, on Friday 21 October.

wear it pink is back for its 15th year, calling on supporters across the country to add a flash of pink to their wardrobe for the day and raise money for Breast Cancer Now’s life-saving breast cancer research.

I joined fellow parliamentarians in wearing it pink in Westminster this week to encourage people across the UK to get involved and help Breast Cancer Now towards their ambition that, by 2050, everyone that develops the disease will live.

wear it pink raises close to £2 million each year for world-class research into breast cancer, and this year it’s going to be pinker and more fun than ever before. Anyone can take part, whether at work, at home or at school. All you have to do is wear something pink and donate what you can.

When you join the hundreds of thousands of people who take part in wear it pink, you become part of a collective force of scientists, supporters and people affected by breast cancer, passionate about putting an end to deaths from the disease.

I am urging fellow politicians that immediate action must be taken to stop the disease taking lives.

50,000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer each year in the UK, and sadly around 11,500 women and 80 men will lose their lives to the disease. Together, we must put a stop to this.

Through cutting-edge research, Breast Cancer Now are tackling the disease from all angles to ensure that, by 2050, everyone that develops the disease will live. But we all need to join forces and act now, and in wear it pink there is a fun and simple way for everyone to get involved.

As a Breast Cancer Ambassador I am particularly passionate about standing up for the women and families affected by the disease in East Worthing and Shoreham and I am very proud to take part in wear it pink. I hope everyone in the local community will join me by wearing it pink on Friday 21 October and show their support for Breast Cancer Now.

Sign up to wear it pink on Friday 21 October to support Breast Cancer Now’s life-saving research. For more information or to register, visit www.wearitpink.org.

Too young to drink campaign
 
September 9th was International Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Awareness Day. The range of harm to an unborn baby due to drinking during pregnancy is called Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD). Alcohol can hurt the baby’s brain, heart, eyes, and other organs.

Children with FASD can have a hard time learning, controlling how they act, and making friends. Drinking alcohol during pregnancy can cause lifelong harm to the unborn child.These nine months last a lifetime.

There is no safe amount of alcohol or safe time to drink during pregnancy or when planning to become pregnant, even a small amount of alcohol can be harmful. It is safest NOT to drink at all during pregnancy as all types of alcoholic drink are harmful for the baby. Alcohol affects the baby’s growth, especially the brain. The baby may be smaller than normal and may cry a lot. As the child grows, it may be hyperactive or difficult, and have trouble learning in school. As a teenager, many of these youth drop out of school, cannot keep a job, and get involved in criminal behaviour.

For more information on FASD
Web: www.fasdtrust.co.uk or www.oxfordfoundation-fasd.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/FASDTrust
Twitter: www.twitter.com/FASD_trust
Rowntree Foundation report on poverty
 
I attended the launch of the Rowntree Foundation and would recommend reading the report on poverty in the UK.

The report explains what poverty is and what causes it, highlights trends and projections in UK poverty, and makes recommendations for tackling:

  • the high costs driving poverty, including housing
  • poverty in childhood
  • poverty in working age
  • poverty in later life
  • poverty for people with complex needs
You can read the full report here: https://www.jrf.org.uk/report/uk-poverty-causes-costs-and-solutions
Friends against scams
 
I am happy to support 'Friends against scams', a National Trading Standards (NTS) Scams Team initiative, which aims to protect and prevent people  from becoming victims of scams by empowering communities to "Take a Stand Against Scams". 

Friends Against Scams has been created to tackle the lack of scams awareness by providing information about scams and those who fall victim to them. This information enables communities and organisations to understand scams, talk about scams and cascade messages throughout communities about scams prevention and protection.

You can read more about the issue here: http://www.friendsagainstscams.org.uk/
In East Worthing and Shoreham
Shoreham Airshow Tragedy Anniversary
 
It came as no surprise that our local community stepped up to the mark yet again in marking the first anniversary of the Shoreham Air Show tragedy. August 22nd was an important day. It was always going to be a very emotional day not only for the families and friends of the eleven men who so cruelly lost their lives, but also for the wider community who made it clear that they continue to stand shoulder to shoulder with them.

As usual, Reverend Ann Waizeneker pitched her comments just right on the Old Toll Bridge which again became the Bridge of Flowers for the short ceremony attended by hundreds of people. Lord Lieutenant Susan Pymer, Chief Constable Giles York, Police commissioner Katy Bourne, Leader of West Sussex County Council Louise Goldsmith, Chairman Pat Arculus and representatives of other emergency services and councils mingled with family members and friends, football players and many others from far around to pay their own tributes. The moment when eleven doves were released and circled the river was a fitting conclusion to a very moving event.

Many other events were held simultaneously across the area including a large gathering outside the Shoreham Centre where Councillor Emma Evans had also organised a display and tribute books inside marking the weekend events. Emma has also led the work on the permanent memorial walk where a number of inspiring designs have been submitted to Adur Council and after further discussion with the families will be published for public consultation shortly.

It was good to see many family members there and brave of those who gave interviews thanking the community for their support. Speaking to a number of them the frustration at the slow progress being made with the investigations was clear and I share their concern. We are now not expecting the final report from the Air Accident Investigation Board until September at the earliest. A police investigation is still underway to determine whether there is any criminal culpability and until that is concluded the Coroner cannot reconvene her formal inquest which looks as if it will be delayed from spring 2017 now.

All this time the families of the victims are being denied some form of closure. Whilst it is essential that all investigations are thorough and scrupulous and get to the bottom of exactly what happened I do think a greater sense of urgency and better cooperation between various public bodies would go a long way to recognise the sensitivity of the situation.

Poulter's Lane
 
I arranged a site visit with SGN gas and the ward councillors to Poulters Lane, Worthing, where the whole road is supposedly closed for three months for laying new gas pipes, to see if this could be speeded up and if better diversions could be put in place. 

This seems an extraordinary length of time to shut off such a busy road and has been causing no little traffic chaos. They are now looking at the situation and if all goes smoothly then three months should be an overly-cautious estimate.

The problem is there is one pipe to serve houses on both sides of the road which is why one lane could not be closed at a time to reduce the inconvenience. 

SGN will have replaced over 500m of their old gas main by the end of this week. This is the section of their network between South Farm Road and Offington Gardens. They will also have replaced the service pipes to each individual property between South Farm Road and Offington Drive.
 
The service pipes to properties on both sides of Poulters Lane are fed from a single gas main in the north side of the road. At times they will need to dig across the road so they can replace the gas pipes to those properties on the south side of the road. They need to close the section of Poulters Lane around their work area to allow them to replace these pipes safely.
 
They are committed to doing everything they can to help traffic flow along their diversion route during the closure of Poulters Lane. Following a meeting with their contractors, they are increasing signage along the diversion routes and adding ‘no parking’ cones at strategic points. They are also continuing to work closely with West Sussex County Council who will look to change the phasing of the Thomas A Beckett traffic lights to ease congestion at the junction.
 
They are aware that some alternative routes, including Offington Avenue, have become more congested than usual as motorists divert around our road closure. They are encouraging motorists to follow the official signed diversion routes to help maintain traffic through the area.
 
They will publish project updates on their website every other week to keep customers and stakeholder informed of their progress. You can find these updates at www.sgn.co.uk/Poulters-Lane-Worthing.

Changes to Findon Valley Post Office

The Post Office have recently changed Findon Valley Post Office to a new-style local branch. Their plans are now finalised and the new-look Post Office opened at the current location on Thursday 15 September 2016.

Customers will benefit from a newly modernised Post Office service and longer opening hours:

Monday – Friday 07:00 – 17:30
Saturday 07:00 – 13:00
Sunday 07:00 – 11:00

A copy of the final plans for this branch have been published on their website at www.postofficeviews.co.uk. When entering the website you will be asked to enter the code for this branch: 07190899. 

Canadian Memorial Day service

Last month I was delighted again to lay a wreath at the Canadian memorial on the beach opposite Grand Avenue in Worthing for the Canadian Memorial Day Service organised annually by Pam Vowles. Pam does a tremendous job running the Canadian Roots charity of which I am very proud to be a patron and it was good to see such a large turnout there to remember our close war time ties with our Canadian cousins. Many were stationed in and around Shoreham and Worthing in both World Wars, with some 970 losing their lives on D-Day alone.
Council cricket match
 
Well done to the winning councillors’ team (including me) who took on Worthing Council officers at a keenly contested annual Mayor’s charity cricket match at Goring last Sunday.

I am delighted to report that my ‘not out,’ albeit for zero runs contribution - and a catch - was a distinct improvement on my performance last year, but more importantly almost £1000 was raised for the Mayor’s charities.
Scouts AGM
 
As always it was a pleasure to attend the AGM of West Sussex Scouts held at Horsham last week. They have had another bumper year with a record increase in scouts almost reaching 10,000 across the County with 113 troops.

It was particularly good to see so many local scouts receiving scouting awards and the part that they are playing with the County Council’s Think Family programme to help young people from troubled families get some stability and support.

It is some 40 years since I was in the cubs and scouts in Lewes but they are as relevant and needed as they ever were.

Young people do not need to spend the whole time in cyber space.

PSA's Schools' Short Video Competition

I am encouraging all local A-level students in the constituency to take part in the Political Studies Association (PSA)’s Schools’ Short Video Competition, now in its sixth year. 

The PSA exists to develop and promote the study of politics and it has never been more important to engage young people with politics and citizenship. 

As part of the PSA's programme of activities to engage young people in politics, they hold an annual short film competition which is open to post-16 students who will be studying during the academic year 2016-17. 

This year’s competition is entitled: ‘Do you have to be Superman/Superwoman to be US President?'

The competition continues to be popular and this year it is kindly sponsored by YouGov.  The winning team will receive their award at the PSA’s Annual Awards Ceremony in Westminster. On top of this, the winning students will each be invited to spend a week volunteering with and shadowing the YouGov political team during their school holidays.

Riverfest 2016
 
Lots of pirates around in Shoreham for Riverfest this weekend including this dodgy pair of organisers (above) and this particularly dodgy one (below) married to a Shoreham councillor - poor woman!

Lancing Business Park Inter-trading Expo - Thursday 22nd September 2pm-6pm

Lancing Business Park is the second largest business park in West Sussex. Lancing Business Park is a Business Improvement District, also known as a BID. Businesses in Lancing Business Park are BID members and they pay a levy which goes towards services above and beyond what the local authority provides, for example, installing CCTV for improved security and improved signage. The BID committee continues to add value for BID members by engaging and connecting businesses on the park.

After listening to BID members in Lancing Business Park, I discovered that some businesses inter-trade with many clients and suppliers in the park but other businesses don't and would like to. There are many benefits to inter-trading with organisations in Lancing Business Park either as a supplier or customer. Inter-trade businesses have told us that they are able to order products in smaller quantities which is essential for lean manufacturing. They are also able to save on delivery costs and it is much easier to build stronger relationships with local business.

Lancing Business Park is not only home to some of the most innovative and successful businesses in the County but it is the second largest business park in the whole of West Sussex and one of the areas ‘hidden gems'. Since forming the BID the park has gone from strength to strength. Strong management and enhanced cooperation between the many businesses has brought huge benefits and I very much welcome this event as a further way to boost the economic clout of this business powerhouse.

 Lancing Business Park Inter-trading Expo takes place on Thursday 22nd September 2016 at Rabbit Skips, 37 Chartwell Road, Lancing Business Park, Lancing, West Sussex BN15 8TU so that businesses can meet, network and build relationships with the objective of boosting inter trading.

Please come along and meet the businesses  – simply register via EventBrite if you would like to attend. 

Please call Vicky Vaughan at The Brand Surgery on 07909 693172 if you have any questions about this event. 

Here is the link for people to register as a guest - https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/lancing-business-park-intertrade-expo-tickets-26876145274?aff=ehomecard

NFU Post-Brexit Pledge

The summer is a good opportunity to catch up with the local farmers who are never short of things to say and this time we met for a hearty farmhouse breakfast at Coombes with the implications of Brexit at the top of the agenda. It was encouraging therefore to see the Government’s announcement that all the EU agricultural subsidies would be recycled to support our farmers at least up until 2020.

After that we can then decide how best to use those substantial funds to promote British farming priorities in the best interests of British consumers, British farmers and the British countryside.

You can see the NFU's pledge I signed here: http://www.nfuonline.com/news/featured-article/we-urge-mps-to-back-british-farming-at-brexit-event/
Adur Ferry Bridge update
 
Recently, I had a meeting with County Councillors, council officers and the police regarding the Adur Ferry Bridge. 

In my previous newsletter, I mentioned that we were looking into an upgraded CCTV system. I am pleased to confirm that a more sophisticated CCTV system will be installed on the bridge, along with better signage. I can also confirm that the panels will be fixed by October. 

Sompting History Day

‘Sompting History Day’ will take place on Sunday 18th September from 10.00am to 4.00pm.

It will be featuring Sompting United Reformed Church and its history, an Air Raid Shelter, and the History of Lancing Mill amongst other activities.

It will take place at the Harriet Johnson Centre, Loose Lane, Sompting.

An update from Southern Water

Southern Water will be replacing one of the two nine-ton, 45-foot-long screens at their East Worthing Treatment Works on Monday.

As part of their drive to improve resilience at the works, they have a rolling system of refurbishment of the site’s two screens which over time become damaged by the huge amount of debris which comes from the sewers.

Between June 2015 and June 2016, the screens filtered out 393 tonnes of wet wipes, nappies and other items that can cause blockages in the wastewater network. That is the equivalent of nearly 80 elephants.

The £250,000 screen is being installed by the contractor Barhale Trant Utilities.

The work is not expected to cause any additional odours or noise for people living nearby.

105- national power cut line

A new national power cut phone line – 105 – has been launched to help constituents in East Worthing and Shoreham contact the company that looks after their electricity network.

Many people don’t know they should contact their local electricity network operator if they have a power cut. They often mistakenly call the electricity supplier they pay their bills to. That’s why the electricity network operators have introduced 105 – to give you an easy-to-remember number to call that will put you through to the local people who can help.

 You can call the number from most landlines and mobile phones and is a free service.

The number, which is available to electricity customers in England, Scotland and Wales, will enable residents to report or get information about power cuts as well as report damage to electricity power lines and substations that could put themselves, or someone else, in danger. 105 is funded and delivered by the electricity network operators, and is a first for the UK’s energy industry.

Find out more at www.powercut105.com

UK Power Networks still runs a Priority Services Register for constituents who may be more vulnerable in a power cut e.g. older people, those dependent on medical equipment, parents of young children etc. To join, you can call 0800 169 9970, email psr@ukpowernetworks.co.uk or apply online at www.ukpowernetworks.co.uk/priority.

Careers and Enterprise Information Session at Northbrook

Northbrook College, in partnership with The Careers & Enterprise Company are hosting a Parents Information Session relating to Year Groups 9-11, providing an informal Q&A session to explain education & career progression routes for young people. This will provide an overview of the options available to students, including A-levels, apprenticeships, Traineeships and BTEC's. Local professionals & employers will be on the panel. 

The event will be held on Tuesday 27th September at Northbrook College. Doors will open at 5pm, for a 5.30pm start.

STRIVE support group

I am supporting the Worthing group STRIVE – Socialising Together Regularly Inspiring Volunteering & Enjoyment - which is a support group for individuals who have long term chronic health conditions.

It is suited to people within the Worthing community  who are struggling to cope with their symptoms and are quite socially isolated.  STRIVE support them by teaching them new techniques and coping strategies, in a variety of different ways making the experience a social event and enjoyable. These activities are to be viewed as additional coping methods to support any medical interventions, not to replace them.

They aim to have different topics to support a general improvement in physical and mental well being every fortnight with a “drop-in support service” every other Tuesday 11am – 1pm.

STRIVE hope that the programme will break the isolation cycle which is often experienced by these individuals and that the social activity aspects of our programme will increase levels of confidence and self esteem.  This group was formed after a local group of individuals completed the Expert Patient Programme and realised they wanted to continue to meet up as the positive benefits to mood and symptom management were clear.

They also hope to actively encourage participants to complete the Expert Patient Programme if they have an interest to do so. 

They are keen to evolve into an active community group who will contribute to the other projects within The Community House service and the local wider community.  They welcome group members not only participating but also contributing ideas and possibly sharing their own gifts and talents with others in future sessions. Some on line training opportunities will be available for anyone who wants to get some basic training certificates to help gain any voluntary placements or future employment.

People can self refer to this group by calling 01903 215799. They can complete a registration form on the day or over the phone, whichever their preference. The sessions will take place at the Community House, 25 Dominion Road, Worthing, BN14 8JZ.

Baggs Raggs

Baggs Raggs, is a Brighton based enterprise to offer opportunities and experience within fashion to those who suffer with their mental health. It was set up be Rosie Baggs and she has made a short film to explain her motivation, see here: https://www.facebook.com/BaggsRaggs/videos/284139955282801/

This is a real good news story and I hope Rosie can be an inspiration to many others.

Baggs Raggs are also hosting a charity fashion show on the 23rd September, 6pm-9pm at Barclays Eagle Lab, Brighton with the help of several local businesses. Proceeds will be going to the fantastic local charity, The Corner House in Southwick.

You can donate and find out more details here: https://goo.gl/VE0ULc

Whilst you can purchase tickets here: Www.baggsraggs.com

Rampion statement on piling noise complaints

Thank you to those who have emailed me regarding the noise resulting from the Rampion piling work. You can see a statement from the Rampion Project Team addressing these complaints here: https://www.timloughton.com/news/rampion-statement-piling-noise-complaints

I would be grateful if you could email any complaints you have to Rampion@eon.com directly, citing the date, time, approximate source and a brief description of the noise. At present they have a relatively small sample size, so this information will enable them to more accurately correlate complaints with our operations which will help them avoid causing further noise disturbances. 

However, Rampion have investigated complaints and can confirm that they were not engaged in any piling activity between 04:00 - 06:00 on 13th or 14th September.

The source of the complaints came 400metres north of Shoreham Port, which is too far from Rampion's vessels' engines operating offshore near Brooklands Pleasure Park in Worthing, to be audible.  Furthermore, they have received no complaints from the vicinity of their works over these two early mornings.

However, they have received a cluster of complaints in the last week from near the A27 Shoreham Bypass / Mile Oak / Southwick area, which all refer to a low droning / humming noise between around 02:00 - 06:00.  This location is not close to any of their construction activities and the complaints have all been made during periods when they were not engaged in piling activity.


This suggests...

Other sources of noise! 

Following reports of noise complaints regarding two new fishing catamarans with particularly noisy engines which are sailing from the eastern arm, through the lock and out to sea during these early hours of around 0300 - 0500, Shoreham Port are doing all they can to help identify sources of noise at sea or in the harbour and exercise whatever influence they have to reduce them. The Harbour Master’s staff have opened a dialogue with members of the fishing community on this matter. It has been suggested that residents speak to the Environmental Health Team at Adur & Worthing Council.

If AWC feel the matter is outside their remit, it may be possible that the Maritime & Coastguard Agency will take an interest with respect to the Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2007.

With regards to the convoys of lorries travelling down Harbour Way doing shingle transfer work, the contractor and the Transport manager are fully on board and have agreed some rules: no trucks should arrive at the beach before 07:00 Hrs. and no loaded trucks should leave the beach site before 07:30 Hrs. In the evenings, no trucks should leave the beach after 17:30 Hrs. Further breaches of the morning rules for drivers will result in disciplinary
action.

Please do continue to send in your complaints and I will investigate. 

Transport Focus: New travel diary app

Are you a passenger on Southern Rail?  Would you like to tell your story?

You can feed back your experiences during the revised, temporary timetable period to Transport Focus through its new travel diary app. 

Transport Focus will feedback the responses they receive to Govia Thameslink Rail services and the government as well as publish the latest feedback on its website.

Click here to read more and find out how to take part.

Click here to go to the Southern website and claim Delay Repay compensation if you are more than 30 minutes late.

A27 Update

A meeting of the A27 Working party was held on Thursday September 15th chaired by Councillor Tom Wye and attended by Sir Peter Bottomley and me, local councillors, and representatives from local businesses and residents’ groups. It was particularly important to dispel a lot of misinformation that had been circulating since a new ‘Bypass not Throughpass’ group held a public meeting in July without inviting local MPs or members of Highways England (HE) carrying out the current work on options to tackle the congestion on the A27 between Worthing and Shoreham. I have already written about this on my website at the end of July but wanted to provide a further update.

Full minutes of the meeting will be available in the next couple of weeks and we have now agreed with Highways England that a public meeting will be held in Worthing at the end of October to give out as much information as possible to try to stem some of the concerns that have arisen. The date and venue should be confirmed in the next few days and I will make sure that local media are given good notice as well to encourage a large attendance.

The meeting heard a presentation from Highways England and specifically local manager Peter Phillips and Project Manager for the Worthing-Shoreham section Tom Beazley. As we have stated all along there will inevitably be a ‘quiet’ period whilst the consultants of the project work up proposals and carry out modelling to test the impact. This work will continue to the end of the year and will then go out to public consultation in the spring. A detailed timetable for this has always been available on my website as well as that of Highways England.

As a result HE understandably cannot rule anything in or out at this stage but it is very clear from their work to date that there is no prospect of a full dualling option through the course of the whole online route and probably no additional dualling on any section of it. Work is therefore being concentrated on improving the flow through the main ‘pinch points’ (Lyons Farm, Grove Lodge etc) and we also had a very interesting presentation from a local resident who is responsible for local BBC traffic reports and has done extensive research on the causes of congestion for the last 15 years. He produced some compelling evidence to show how work at these ‘pinch points’ could achieve a great deal and that traffic pollution is 40% higher when traffic is idle. Links to his research will be given in the minutes.

Other points:

  • Scare stories about 4-6 lane highways caused by full dualling are just that, scare stories.
  • Speed limits are unlikely to be altered much if at all
  • No compulsory purchases of property have been made and indeed cannot be made until the final proposals have been signed off by the Transport Secretary. It is likely that this will be only a limited necessity in any case.
  • No applications for planning permission for changes have been made and again this cannot happen until the final proposals have been settled.
  • Any work is unlikely to include major structural additions like flyovers.
  • If more effective options can be achieved beyond the indicated budget for the work then further funding options can be explored which is where the MPs can play a useful part
  • The work on the Arundel section of the A27 is at a parallel stage with the Worthing-Shoreham section so it is important that they are complementary and do not just shift the blockages.

The Chairman of the new ‘Bypass not Throughpass’ group was invited to the meeting to make a presentation and hear what the Highways England representatives had to say. It was again made clear that a full bypass option had been modelled and ruled out at an early stage and that option has been taken off the table. This was down to cost effectiveness, environmental impact, and limited impact on the majority of A27 traffic which is local traffic. HE promised to provide detailed figures as to how they had costed the other options and also the traffic flow figures they have used.

Again they will be published on their website and mine as soon as they are available and can be explained in more detail at the public meeting.

Whilst many of us campaigned for a bypass option it is simply no longer an option, made less likely by the fact it would run almost exclusively through the National Park. Full dualling of an online option along the current route of the A27 was specified in the original plans to see if it is feasible and to make sure that the final result was not just minimal ‘tinkering’ with junctions that would have minimal impact and that all options were properly analysed. It is clear now that full dualling, and even limited dualling, is not going to happen and it is important to make sure that what is proposed will be of significant benefit.

All this will and must be subject to full public scrutiny and engagement which is why we set up the A27 Working Group in the first place and its members will play an important role when the plans are published. Whilst a full bypass may be the preferred option of some if it is not a possibility then it is important that we can support an effective option which is on offer otherwise we risk losing the whole project and reverting to the status quo which is what happened back in the 1990’s and would be a disaster.

I hope this is helpful and I will update my website as soon as further news is available as I am determined that everyone should be 'in the loop’ as much as possible if we are to achieve any degree of consensus which can make these improvements a reality, having campaigned for them for so many years.

Aviva Community Fund

Aviva Community Fund was launched on the 13th September and they very much welcome applications from community groups in the constituency. 

The Aviva Community Fund awards funding of up to £25,000 for local community projects across a range of categories such as supporting the elderly, health & wellbeing and community sport.  Last year they had over 430 separate winners and this year is bigger and better than ever with over 800 awards up for grabs. Get enough votes from your friends, family and supporters and you could reach the finals, where the judging panel picks the winners and awards the funds. 

Applications can be made until 11th October via this link:http://www.aviva.co.uk/good-thinking/community-fund/  and winners will be announced in January.  

If you have any questions about the application please do not hesitate to contact simon.oswald@aviva.com
‘I Am Team GB’ the nation’s biggest ever sport day, comes to East Worthing and Shoreham

I was delighted to support I Am Team GB, the nation’s biggest ever sports day, which took place on Saturday 27th August. I Am Team GB was organised by ITV and The National Lottery, working with the British Olympic Association, UK Sport and supported by Join In, the London 2012 volunteer legacy charity.

British Olympians returning from Rio were joined by famous faces from ITV, to celebrate Team GB's success.

The day saw thousands of sports clubs across the UK open their doors and in an unprecedented move, ITV, STV and UTV  switched off their channels for an hour to inspire the nation to take part in a wide range of sports, free of charge. The day also celebrated the support the public gives Team GB’s athletes by playing The National Lottery. Over £80 million has been raised each year by National Lottery players to help fund elite athletes during the four-year build-up to Rio 2016.

I attended a boxing class organised by Shaun Brown Boxing Academy, which is based in Lancing. The session included a demonstration from the academy’s junior boxers (aged 6 – 12yrs) and was held at the Impulse Leisure Centre in Lancing between 12:00 and 14:00.

Rio 2016 was an historic and record breaking year from Team GB. They have captivated the nation’s attention this summer and made us incredibly proud. They triumphed in so many different areas, even in the standing up sports!

I know from speaking to constituents just how enthusiastic many were about the Olympics and I hope it will inspire more people to get involved in sports. It is crucial, not only for the continued success of Team GB, but also for the health of the nation.

I am looking forward to visiting Shaun Brown Boxing Academy and finding out more about their work in the local area and how they are inspiring the next generation.

You can find out more about the event here:   http://iamteamgb.com/event/boxing-class-and-demonstration/ as well as about Shaun Brown Boxing Academy here: http://www.shaunbrownboxing.co.uk/.

Independent report: Coperforma's performance and contract process

Coperforma specialises in running comprehensive patient and other hospital transport services in the UK.The CCG have recently released a report on Coperforma, which you can read here:http://www.highwealdleweshavensccg.nhs.uk/news/patient-transport-service-report/#.V6r6vfkrKUk.

The report states, “the new…contract was clearly not successful in delivering the required level of service during April and early May 2016, the period covered by this review.” The report goes onto to list of number of reasons why the performance was so awful, including high volume of calls and errors in the handling of live data being addressed in weeks rather than days, and a combination of other factors contributed to failures in service delivery.

Meanwhile, six members of Coperforma’s booking staff have been suspended while the CCG carries out an investigation into allegations of potential irregularities and omissions in the booking and dispatch of patient transport.

The initial implementation of the changes was completely unacceptable and led to many of the most vulnerable members of society being treated appalling. However the CCG state in their report that patient satisfaction was up to 88% at the end of July and over 90% of patients are now getting to their appointments on time. I will continue to monitor this situation closely and will act accordingly if the situation worsens again.

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This newsletter is published by Tim Loughton MP, House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA.

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