Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Newspaper column 26 July - Fair funding and tourism

Parliament has now risen for the Summer Recess and I am now looking forward to being able to spend the next few weeks working in Mid-Cornwall without having to travel to and from London. I will be out and about as much as possible, meeting as many of you as I can, as well as visiting local businesses and organisations to find out what matters to you on both local and national issues. If you would like me to meet you or visit your business or charity please get in touch.

In the last week of Parliament I was pleased to be elected as Chairman of two influential groups within Westminster, both of which work on issues of great importance to Mid-Cornwall.

The first of these is the Rural Fair Share Campaign group. This group of MPs from all parties supports an impartial, objective, needs-based approach to funding local public services.

I initially joined this campaign following my election in 2015 and since then have worked closely with the group to push the Government to give rural areas like Cornwall a fair deal in funding, where we have historically missed out.

The campaign aims to change the current set up for funding, which sees public services in rural areas receive up to 40% less than in urban areas, whether this is for our schools, local government or police.

The second group I have been elected Chairman of is the Visitor Economy All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG).

This group aims to actively support and promote the visitor economy by working with the Government to bring forward measures and incentives to support domestic and international in-bound tourism. The tourist industry is a major economic force in Mid-Cornwall, and hospitality and tourism is the fourth largest industry in the UK, employing 4.6 million people.  This APPG provides an opportunity for MPs from all parties to work with the tourism industry to make sure their voice is heard loud and clear. This will be especially important during the vital Brexit negotiations as we prepare to leave the EU.

The APPG has already launched a successful report into skills and apprenticeships in the tourist industry and following our recent inquiry into Coastal Communities, we will be making representations to Government. We will also be prioritising the impact of Brexit and the digital and sharing economy on tourism in coming months.

I am aware there are some big challenges ahead for both of these influential groups in Parliament. But I am up for the challenge and will aim to use my position as chairman to be a strong and effective voice for Cornwall.

As always, my team and I are here to serve the whole constituency and work hard to make a real difference to the lives of everyone needing support. If there is an issue you would like my assistance on then please contact me on either 01726 829379 or Additionally, I hold regular, appointment only, advice surgeries across the constituency. Dates of these can be found at: