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BILL WIGGIN MP

MP for North Herefordshire

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Bill Wiggin MP welcomes Agriculture Bill and shows support for British farming in North Herefordshire

Bill Wiggin MP has today welcomed the Government’s introduction of the Agriculture Bill to the House of Commons, as he attended an event to show his support for British farming at Back British Farming Day in Westminster, recognising the crucial role farmers play in producing food and caring for the countryside.

Farming is the bedrock of the UK’s largest manufacturing sector – food and drink – which contributes over £110 billion to the economy and employs 3.8 million people.

Bill Wiggin MP said: “I am immensely proud to wear the Back British Farming pin badge today in support of a sector that is so valuable to the country. Our farmers play a unique role in securing a plentiful supply of fabulous British food, looking after our iconic countryside and sustaining a dynamic rural economy.

Food production is a vital part of everyday life and impacts on us all. I would encourage all MPs and members of the pubic to get behind this important campaign and Back British Farming.”

Speaking after the event Mr Wiggin offered his reaction to the Government’s Agriculture Bill:

“I very much welcome the Government’s Agriculture Bill, which will reward farmers properly at last for the work they do to enhance the environment around us. It recognises the value farmers bring as food producers. It will help them grow more high quality food in a more sustainable way – and it will ensure public money is spent more efficiently and effectively. Powers will be returned to the UK Parliament to amend the CAP regulations, so that as we move away from them, we can set the rules that work for our farmers, strip out unnecessary bureaucracy and provide the certainty and smooth transition the industry needs.

The decisions made in Parliament over the coming months are critical to the future of British food production. As one of the sectors that will be most affected by Britain’s departure from the EU, it is important that we as politicians create the right regulatory environment to ensure our farmers can continue to provide safe and affordable food for the nation.”

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Bill Wiggin MP delighted with progress after Wye Valley NHS Trust’s successful bid for New Ward at Hereford County Hospital

Bill Wiggin, MP for North Herefordshire, has welcomed news of Wye Valley NHS Trust’s successful bid for a new ward at Hereford County Hospital.

NHS England have approved Wye Valley NHS Trust’s £3.6 million to install a new 24-bedded ward before the New Year.

The announcement of a new ward comes after Mr Wiggin raised the issue with the Prime Minister during PMQs back in March, saying:

“…I want the Prime Minister to ensure that Hereford Hospital is now top of the list for future capital investment.”

The new ward will enable staff to assess patients quickly and reduce the reliance on using areas normally occupied by patients undergoing routine surgery when pressure mounts on services during the winter.

Commenting on the announcement, Mr Wiggin said:

“I have been looking for this extra investment in more beds since I was elected in 2001 and remember chasing Alun Milburn down Whitehall seeking extra beds. I have never given up.

I fully support the work that Wye Valley NHS Trust are doing to ensure the excellent staff can give patients the best possible care.

The Trust did outstandingly well to meet its control target for last year, and I will back them fully as they seek a long-term financial settlement which must be based on the right tariff relative to the rurality of Hereford Hospital.”

Bill Wiggin MP Welcomes News of 100 Additional Police Officers for West Mercia

Bill Wiggin, MP for North Herefordshire, has welcomed an announcement from Police and Crime Commissioner for West Mercia, John Campion, of plans to recruit 100 additional police officers for West Mercia.

The 100 new officers will take West Mercia to an establishment of 2,030 police officer posts, which will be welcomed by communities who have called for a more visible police presence.

Commenting on the announcement, Bill Wiggin MP said:

“I am delighted by the Police and Crime Commissioner’s announcement of 100 additional police officers for West Mercia.  I am sure that all of us living in North Herefordshire will welcome the reassurance that our community will have the police service that we need.

I am glad that our conservative Government has supported West Mercia with its flexible precept setting for 2019-20 and I will continue to help the Commissioner achieve further improvements to West Mercia policing.”

Bill Wiggin MP welcomes more beds for Wye Valley NHS Trust

Bill Wiggin MP today welcomed the news that following his most recent question to the Prime Minister in June, the Wye Valley NHS Trust has been allocated £3.6 million for a scheme which will help with its bed capacity.

Bill Wiggin MP received a letter from the Secretary of State for Health, the Rt Hon Matt Hancock MP, below:

“Dear Bill,

Improved emergency care, new beds, and enhanced equipment as part of major funding boost for hospitals ahead of winter

To make sure the NHS performs as well as it possibly can this winter we are funding hospitals to deliver improvements in their A&E performance.

A total of 81 new schemes, totalling £145 million of capital investment, have been prioritised from within the Department’s capital budget for hospitals across the country to help staff prepare ahead of winter.

This funding will enable the NHS to deliver additional beds, redevelop A&E units and upgrade wards, enhance bed management systems, and improve ‘same-day’ emergency care.

I am delighted to inform you that your local NHS trust will benefit from this funding as part of the action the Government is taking in advance of winter.

Wye Valley NHS Trust has identified a scheme that can help with its bed capacity, and has been allocated £3.6m. I would be very interested in your views if there is more that we can do to help Wye Valley NHS Trust deliver for your constituents.

Last winter was challenging, but thanks to the efforts and dedication of hard working frontline staff, over 500 more people were seen in A&E and admitted or discharged within four hours every day. This further investment in the NHS will help those staff to deliver the best possible care for patients this winter.

Yours ever,

MATT HANCOCK”

Bill Wiggin MP Local Summer Surgeries

Bill Wiggin, MP for North Herefordshire, will be holding a series of mobile surgeries at the following venues:-

Tuesday 31st July 2018

9.00 a.m:                     Outside Kings Caple village hall

9.35 a.m:                     Outside Mordiford Primary School

10.00 a.m:                   Outside Withington Village Stores

10.25 a.m:                   Outside Golden Cross Inn, Sutton St Nicholas

11.00 a.m:                   Outside The Salutation Inn, Weobley

11.25 a.m:                   Outside The Bells Inn, Almeley

11.55 p.m:                   Outside The New Inn Pembridge

12.25 p.m:                   Outside Wigmore Village Hall

12.55 p.m:                   Outside Yarpole Village Hall

13.25 p.m:                   Outside Duke of York, Leysters

14.00 p.m:                   Outside Edwyn Ralph Village Hall

14.35 p.m:                   Outside Royal British Legion, Cradley

15.05 p.m:                   Outside Colwall Village Hall

15.30 p.m:                   Outside Bosbury Parish Hall

16.05 p.m                    Outside Putley Village Hall

 

No appointments are necessary, please just turn up at the location most convenient to you. For any further information, please contact Mr Wiggin’s office: 01568612565 or email: officeofbillwigginmp@parliament.uk

Bill Wiggin MP backs farming for nature

Bill Wiggin, MP for North Herefordshire, is backing farming that is better for animals, people and the environment ahead of the forthcoming Agriculture Bill.

Last week Bill Wiggin MP joined with farmers and NGOs to celebrate sustainable farming across the UK at a Farmers’ Market event in Parliament, organised by the environmental coalitions Wildlife and Countryside Link and Greener UK. The coalitions include organisations such as RSPB, Pasture for Life, National Trust, WWF and RSPCA.

The event comes just before the forthcoming Agriculture Bill is expected to be introduced to the House of Commons and was well-attended with cross-party support from more than 60 MPs and Peers. It showcased nature friendly UK farming produce, explored the reasons why it is essential for the environment to thrive if farming is to do the same, and demonstrated consensus on the need for a strong Agriculture Bill which enables us to use public money to both help farmers and enhance and protect the environment.

Bill Wiggin MP, said: ‘The environment, plants, wildlife and farming are inextricably linked. Farming must be profitable and can be more successful with the natural resources it relies on. Nature is dependent on the stewardship of farmers, who care for so much of our treasured British landscape. Our environment and our farmers need our support, and that’s why I’m excited by an Agriculture Bill that will allow them to work in harmony and enable both to survive and thrive.’

Bill Wiggin MP is working with the RSPCA to help improve animal welfare in North Herefordshire

Bill Wiggin MP attended the RSPCA’s annual drop-in in the House of Commons last week. As part of this, he heard directly from RSPCA Inspectors about their frontline work to protect animals in North Herefordshire and across the UK.

At the event, the scale of animal cruelty complaints across Herefordshire were revealed. In 2017, the RSPCA investigated 496 complaints about animal cruelty in the county, with the charity’s nationwide 24-hour cruelty line receiving over a million calls.

The RSPCA has been investigating and prosecuting animal welfare offences since its foundation in 1824. To this day, they are increasing their work to prevent cruelty occurring in the first place and to educate the next generation of animal lovers.

Commenting after the event, Bill Wiggin MP said:

“I welcome the work that their Inspectors do to protect animal welfare in North Herefordshire. It was fantastic to meet some of their hard-working Inspectors and to thank them on behalf of the animal lovers in our area for all that they do.

However, I am saddened that the RSPCA’s latest statistics show animal cruelty complaints are continuing in Herefordshire. We all have a duty to be vigilant against abuses of animal welfare and I will continue to work closely with the RSPCA to help improve standards of animal welfare in Herefordshire and across the UK.”

Bill Wiggin MP uses PMQs to ask for more beds for Hereford County Hospital

Bill Wiggin, MP for North Herefordshire, continued his campaign for more beds for Hereford County Hospital during today’s Prime Ministers Questions.

Mr Wiggin asked the Prime Minister:

“My Rt Hon Friend will be aware I have raised the issue of more beds for Hereford Hospital no fewer than twelve time over the years.

Can she now confirm that the funding is in place to deliver these much needed beds?”

The Prime Minister responded by saying:

“Can I say to my Hon Friend that I know he has been a consistent campaigner on this issue? We have announced over £3.9 billion of new additional capital funding for the NHS up to 2022-23. The majority of that is to support the implementation of the local Sustainability and Transformation Partnership Plans for local communities.

Major projects are under consideration across the country, we intend to announce one large-scale scheme the size of the Shrewsbury and Telford plan every year going forward based on high-quality plans, but coming forward from local NHS leaders. It is important that these plans are driven by the local NHS but they will ensure better care for patients.”

Speaking after the session, Bill Wiggin MP said:

“I was pleased to be able to press the Prime Minister on this ever important issue. I welcomed her reassurances and plans for local healthcare, but I remain determined to ensure we get the beds that Hereford Hospital so badly needs.

I will not stop campaigning for this as the problem has never ceased to be absolutely relevant, and I am hopeful that the money will be made available for us in Herefordshire.”

Bill meets with Hugh Grant for press regulation discussion

Bill Wiggin, MP for North Herefordshire, last week met with actor Hugh Grant to discuss press regulation ahead of the remaining stages of the Data Protection Bill, due on 9th May.

Mr Wiggin had previously spoken in Parliament of his disappointment at the Government’s decision to abandon the recommendations of the Leveson inquiry, while Mr Grant is a member of Hacked Off, the campaign for an accountable Press.

Bill Wiggin MP also offered his reaction to an announcement from the Independent Press Standards Organisation, stating they are to implement a compulsory low-cost arbitration scheme.

Mr Wiggin welcomed the announcement, however he added a note of caution, saying:
“I have been campaigning for a compulsory low-cost arbitration scheme ever since the Leveson Inquiry.

The problem is that the so called ‘compulsory’ scheme is actually voluntary.
Newspapers are under no obligation to sign up, newspapers do not have to be members of IPSO and IPSO is not an approved regulator.

Any newspaper who is not signed up to the scheme, or who decides to leave IPSO, has no obligation to provide low-cost arbitration to victims of press abuse.
This announcement is therefore utterly meaningless without the legislation to enforce it.

IPSO, in saying that the newspapers must no longer be able to pick and choose, agree that the newspapers can no longer be trusted to provide the access to justice which Lord Leveson said was necessary – low-cost arbitration.

I welcome IPSO’s newly prompted commitment to low-cost arbitration, and want it to be compulsory for all members. I hope all their members sign up voluntarily and then remain in the scheme, but this does not change the need to legislate in order to protect the rights of the vulnerable to low-cost arbitration.

This is a step in the right direction, but until it is compulsory for all cases against all newspapers, but I am worried that it is still simply a sidestep by the media to avoid being forced to provide access to justice for the most vulnerable victims of press abuse.”

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