Caroline Nokes MP

22 Oct 2012 15:31:06

Conservative Select Committee appointments announced

By Matthew Barrett
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SelectCommittesGuido Fawkes has a list of new Conservative members of Select Committees, from Graham Brady's office. Mr Brady explains: "For the following committees I have received the same number of nominations as there are vacancies, the following are therefore elected". The appointments are:

Communities and Local Government

John Stevenson (Carlisle), replacing George Hollingbery (Meon Valley), who became PPS to Theresa May at the reshuffle.


Chris Skidmore (Kingswood), replacing Damian Hinds (East Hampshire), who became PPS to Mark Francois, the Minister of State for Defence Personnel, Welfare and Veterans.


Andrew Percy (Brigg and Goole), replacing Dr Daniel Poulter (Central Suffolk and North Ipswich), who was made the Parliamentary Undersecretary of State for Health Services.

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6 Jul 2012 13:17:19

41 Tory MPs join call by Robert Halfon MP for OFT to investigate high petrol prices

By Matthew Barrett
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C-home Fairness for motorists

Robert Halfon, the Member of Parliament for Harlow, and one of the most successful campaigning MPs in Parliament, has organised a motion, backed by 60 MPs from all parties, and including 41 Tories, calling for the Office of Fair Trading to investigate allegations of price-fixing by British oil companies. The full motion is worded as follows:

"That this House urges the OFT to investigate oil firms active in the UK; calls on the Government to consider the emergency actions being taken in other G20 nations to cut fuel prices, for example President Obama strengthening Federal supervision of the U.S. oil market, and increasing penalties for “market manipulation”, and Germany and Austria setting up a new oil regulator, with orders to help stabilise the price of petrol in the country; finally urges the Office of Fair Trading to note that the Federal Cartel Office in Germany is now investigating oil firms active in the UK, after allegations of price-fixing."

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3 Feb 2011 17:57:25

New Forest MPs differ over Spelman woodland sale proposals

by Paul Goodman

Desmond Swayne Desmond Swayne (New Forest West) and Julian Lewis (New Forest East) entered the Commons together as New Forest neighbours in 1997.  Both were on the right of the Party; both were rumbustious Parliamentarians; both were greeted with werewolf howls from Labour backbenchers; both served on the Conservative front bench.  But their ways have parted: the first is David Cameron's Parliamentary Private Secretary, the second is a backbencher.

To the second, the first is his "dear and hon. Friend", but these neighbours - two of the three Conservative backbenchers who spoke in yesterday's Commons debate on Spelman's proposals - disagree.  The nub of Swayne's position was as follows -

"I hope that those critics will look at these proposals with an open mind and wonder whether they might just be looking a gift horse in the mouth. There might be an opportunity to rebalance the interests of the forests that have been so shoddily disrupted by the creation of a national park. Within the Crown lands of the New Forest, there are already many private lands and private commons. Indeed, the National Trust itself owns two of the real gems: Hale Purlieu and the Bramshaw Commons. The land is not all owned and managed by the Forestry Commission...

...The New Forest is unique and what I would like to see is something along the lines of what we have in Queen's house in Lyndhurst - perhaps even with exactly the same staff and personnel who currently manage the forest there - but reporting not to a board in Edinburgh, but to a board in the New Forest representing the proper interests of the New Forest, and particularly those of the people who have always safeguarded the forest and been responsible for the law of the forest-namely, the Verderers...I say again to my hon. Friend the Member for New Forest East, and also to opponents, that there is an opportunity here for us that we would be foolish to pass up."

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18 Jun 2010 15:58:44

Caroline Nokes and Jason McCartney seek to promote a high-skilled economy in their maiden speeches

Nokes Caroline In a maiden speech delivered yesterday, Caroline Nokes, who won Romsey and Southampton North, addressed the subject of building a high-skills economy, which was the topic of yesterday's debate on the Commons:

“Even in an area where we are fortunate to have good schools, an excellent university and companies like Ford committed to Britain’s manufacturing base, there is still a disconnect between what employers want and the skills of our school leavers. It is critical that the two are matched, and that our education system works with employers to make sure there is no skills gap.”

“Of course, building a high-skilled economy is not just about the urban centres of the constituency. There are many beautiful rural villages in the north, where problems are inevitably caused by the lack of high-speed broadband—or indeed any broadband at all—but where there is also a good strong farming tradition. The fact that agriculture is traditional does not mean that it is not high-skilled; far from it. Those skills manage and maintain our countryside and, very important, keep us fed. While focusing on the high-skilled, we must ensure that we do not let Britain’s farming tradition wither."

McCartney Jason Meanwhile, Jason McCartney - who gained the West Yorkshire constituency of Colne Valley, talked about the promoting small businesses and the importance of protecting access to service in rural areas:

"Many people say to me—other Members of the House probably hear this too—that we do not make things any more, but I am proud to say that in my constituency we do. It is not on a large scale, but I have a number of enterprising, entrepreneurial and innovative businesses that have set up, sometimes in old mills, to create products that have a niche market and that are exporting around the world… It is these sorts of little enterprises that we, in a high-skilled economy, must try to promote. We have to cut the red tape; we should support them with lower taxes; we must give them the skills in the work force and the local infrastructure so that their workers can live and work locally.

“We have got to support local rural post offices… Post offices, especially the rural ones, are struggling, and our post office network was decimated in the last decade. It is important that we support them, because once they are gone, they are gone. We also need to support things such as rural bus services, so that people can live in my rural communities and work there as well."

He also lamented the recent axeing by the BBC of Last of the Summer Wine, which was set in his constituency

"That gentle comedy about Yorkshire folk, usually going downhill in a bathtub, was very much a mainstay of our television and it helped to promote tourism in my constituency. In Holmfirth, which is just a mile up the road from where I live, we have a Compo’s caff and there is a Wrinkled Stocking café just two doors down from my new constituency office, so we will really miss that opportunity to promote tourism."

Jonathan Isaby