In a very busy chamber, I asked the Secretary of State for BEIS what action he will be taking to ensure that there are more charging points for electric vehicles in rural areas.
In Flintshire there are only two charging points for the whole county meaning that we cannot benefit from this technology. If we are going to cut our carbon emissions and embolden the next generation of car manufacture techniques we need to be supporting this technology not hindering it.
My colleague Chris Matheson – MP for City of Chester – secured a Westminster Hall Debate on the new Runcorn Bridge and the impact of the tolls on communities that use it.
In recent days I have received a significant number of correspondence from constituents who have been fined for using the bridge despite paying the toll. I have heard that the signage on the approach to the bridge is poor and that it is unclear of how to pay the toll. To add insult to injury the old bridge, once renovations are complete, will also start to be tolled – despite never being previously. I used this debate to raise my concerns over this and my disappointment with the recent response I received from Merseyflow – the company responsible for managing the toll service.
I have called on the UK Government to review the planned increase in rail fares for 2018. This follows news that rail fares in Britain will go up by an average 3.4% from 2 January 2018.
The increase is the biggest since 2013 and covers regulated fares, which includes season tickets, and unregulated fares, such as off-peak leisure tickets.
Rail fares have now witnessed an ever increasing price rise in each of the past 3 years. In January 2016 prices increased by a little over 1%, January 2017 saw an increase of nearly 2.5% and now this increase of 3.4% will put pressure on families.
Public sector workers, who have had their pay capped at 1% for the past seven years, will be hit badly by this increase in fares. Inflation has been hitting 3% meaning that people’s take home pay has been cut in real terms. This increase on the cost of living will harm working households further still. Read more “Rail Fare rise”
I welcome the news from Virgin Trains that they are investigating the possibility of more trains stopping at Flint on its London Euston to Holyhead route.
This comes following lobbying by myself for more trains to service Delyn.
In a letter from Virgin Trains, I was informed that they:
“…are exploring the possibility of adding Flint as a calling point on the 18.10 service from London Euston. The earliest this change could be implemented is the December 2018 Timetable changes.”
I am pleased to hear that Virgin Trains are considering adding an additional service to Delyn. As we only have one train station it is important that we can build upon the number of trains stopping in Flint. I continually work to press Virgin Trains to increase their services to our town as we deserve to be well-connected with London, Holyhead and have fast access to hub stations such as Crewe.
If this goes ahead it will be an excellent boost to our local economy. Not only will it mean that Flint will only be little over two hours from London – helping businesses forge strong links with the capital – but it will ensure that Flint can become the gateway station to North Wales. I know that many businesses are taking advantage of our links to the railway network and I want to help them build upon that. The stronger these businesses can become the more decent jobs they can provide.
This builds upon the work I am doing with Holywell Town Council to see a new station opened for Holywell and Greenfield. It is clear that the more interconnected our towns and villages the more they can thrive. I will keep pressing for more investment so that Delyn residents can benefit.