Anna McMorrin MP Responds to the Velindre Cancer Centre Planning Application

I’ve contacted Anna McMorrin MP, Julie Morgan AM and the four Whitchurch and Tongwynlais County Councillors for their views on the Velindre Cancer Centre planning application.

Anna McMorrin has sent me these comments:

“I support the Velindre NHS Trust planning application for the development of the new Velindre Cancer Centre on land to the North of Whitchurch Hospital playing fields, Whitchurch, Cardiff.

“I have had many discussions with Velindre Hospital, local residents and organisations over the past few months to discuss the development and have considered all of the issues very carefully, weighing the very real environmental concerns with the health needs of our communities and that of South East Wales.

“Planning permission has already been granted for 86 houses to be built on the Whitchurch Meadows site. I would prefer the space to be used for a world class centre of excellence that leads the UK, and is desperately needed in South East Wales, where cancer is the second highest cause of death.

“However, I am concerned that there will be a significant environmental impact on a part of Whitchurch meadows and am keen that the developers seek to mitigate as much of this as possible in their design and delivery of the project. I am also aware that there are crucial concerns about traffic, transport and parking.

“I have spoken a number of times to the developers and with Cardiff Council to discuss all of these concerns and in particular to ask whether the site could be developed on a brownfield site elsewhere. The current Whitchurch hospital site is a Grade two listed building and therefore cannot be built on or adapted and I have been assured that there is no other NHS owned or brownfield public land available in the vicinity to accommodate the development. The other consideration is that the Cancer Centre must be close to the Heath Hospital in order for patients to receive surgery.

“Following discussions with Cardiff Council, I have been informed that their own consultation responses on public rights of way and ecology are yet to be submitted. I will be following these responses and the proposals with interest and am also meeting with the developers again in early September.

“Although the pre-planning consultation period has come to an end, I am continuing my discussions with environmental groups, Friends of Forest Farm, local residents, the developers and Cardiff Council. I have also sought a meeting to discuss the proposal with Natural Resources Wales. I am committed to ensuring that Cardiff North residents voices are heard and that the upmost is done to reduce the impact on the local community, as well as on Whitchurch meadows.”

Anna Mcmorrin MP (contact Anna at anna.mcmorrin.mp@parliament.uk)

(Received by email on 14 August 2017)

Julie Morgan AM Responds to the Velindre Cancer Centre Planning Application

I’ve contacted Anna McMorrin MP, Julie Morgan AM and the four Whitchurch and Tongwynlais County Councillors for their views on the Velindre Cancer Centre planning application.

Julie Morgan has sent me these comments:

“I do support this application. I have been involved with Velindre Hospital for many years and have taken part in many discussions about the plan for a new hospital and for delivering cancer services as close to home as possible for patients in South East Wales.

“The plan is for a new hospital to be sited on the Whitchurch Hospital Meadows. I have opposed development on the meadows for many years but planning permission was finally given for houses in 2001. There will therefore be development on the meadows in any case. I am therefore supporting a hospital rather than houses. This view is backed by the Friends of Forest Farm, who work, voluntarily, to protect and maintain Forest Farm.

“I have met the developers on a number of occasions. I believe we must do all we can to minimise the environmental impact. I have also met people opposed to the development. One of the issues raised is why can’t it go somewhere else. There is not enough room at the Whitchurch Hospital site as the hospital is a listed building and cannot be demolished. I am assured that there is no other NHS or public land available for the development and it needs to be near the Heath Hospital where cancer surgery is carried out.

“I am in support of having the best possible modern service for cancer patients in South East Wales so that we can improve the life chances for the increasing number of people who suffer from cancer. I am satisfied that there is no other suitable site available so I will be doing all I can to support the development to be as environmentally friendly as possible to take on board the views of local residents and my own views.”

Julie Morgan AM (contact Julie at juliemorgan.org.uk)

(Received by email on 28 July 2017)

Anna McMorrin’s First 3 Weeks in the Job

Houses of Parliament

After winning a 4,174 majority in the recent general election, Anna McMorrin has had a busy few weeks.

First Day in Work

Ruth Mosalski spoke to Anna and asked her about the campaign, election night and the first few days in the job.

Anna described her experience at Westminster, “You get to know everybody and meet people in the same position. It’s amazing and humbling to walk into the Palace of Westminster. Coming out of the tube and seeing Big Ben and going into work there is such a privilege.”

Tesco Job Cuts

BBC News reported on 21st June that Tesco are cutting up to 1,100 jobs in their Cardiff North call centre.

Anna sponsored an Early Day Motion on 21st June, which “urges the Government to seek ways to intervene to help prevent such a decision and support the local economy and local community at this time” and has received 16 signatures.

She raised the issue in the Commons on 22nd June and asked, “Will the Leader of the House provide an urgent debate or statement on the issue so that we can hear what help the Government can provide and, at the very least, will the Department for Work and Pensions be dispatching a full emergency taskforce to support my constituents at this difficult time?” Andrea Leadsom, Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons, asked Anna to write to her and promised to, “seek a response from the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.”

Anna and Julie Morgan AM met with Alec Brown, head of UK stakeholder relations, and Rhodri Evans, communications manager for Wales and the West of England on 22nd June. According to a statement published on Julie Morgan’s website, they used the meeting to “press them on their reasons for the job losses and why jobs in Dundee have been prioritised over jobs in Wales.”

They add, “We strongly oppose this decision and asked them to think again and take this back to their chief executive.

“We asked what the rationale was for the job losses in Cardiff and we were told there was more space in Dundee and the company wants to have one site where customer relations staff are based. They said they would come back to us with other reasons as we could not see why Dundee is a more attractive place to base these jobs.

“We feel they are not acting responsibly as a long-standing employer in Wales when the company has employed staff in Cardiff at Maes-y-Coed Road in Cardiff North for 27 years.

“We were shocked that Tesco didn’t even contact Welsh Government to discuss any help it could offer to keep the jobs in Wales before making this decision.

“We are dismayed at the huge number of good jobs that will be lost and it will have a massive impact on staff and their families.”

Julie and Anna arranged to visit Tesco House on 23rd June to meet staff.

Anna used her maiden speech on 26th June to raise the issue again and report on the meeting with staff. She said, “I have had the opportunity to spend time with and speak to many of the workers who have been told they have lost their jobs. They are devastated; many have two or three members of the same family working there.”

Anna’s maiden speech included a tribute to the late Rhodri Morgan, some background on the constituency and Brexit. She ended by saying, “I intend to use my time to stand up against failed austerity measures and for a more prosperous, fairer and more equal society. I look forward to working with my colleagues here.”

“I intend to use my time to stand up against failed austerity measures and for a more prosperous, fairer and more equal society. I look forward to working with my colleagues here.” – Anna McMorrin MP

Communication

I emailed Anna this morning to ask her some questions about how constituents should contact her and how she communicates with us.

There are many ways to get in touch with your MP but some are more effective than others. It’s important to include your address so they know you’re a constituent.

I’ve asked Anna to clarify how she would like to receive questions and if she is going to make a statement on the Velindre Cancer Centre consultations. I’ve also asked if a website is in the works.

Image credit – Eric Hossinger

Velindre Cancer Centre Community Engagement Meeting

Artist-impression_new-Velindre-Cancer-Centre

There’s a community engagement meeting this evening to discuss traffic, transport and parking at the proposed Velindre Cancer Centre.

Date: Thursday, June 15th

Time: 6pm – 8pm

Venue: Whitchurch RFC, Samuels Crescent, Cardiff, CF14 2TH

Room: Conference Suite (please note that the room can hold a maximum of 60 people and we are unable to reserve seats)

My Daily Cardiff North – 10 June 2017

My Daily Cardiff North logo

General Election

Newly elected Cardiff North MP, Anna McMorrin, visited Rhiwbina food market this morning. She published this video on her Facebook page and said:

“Thank you for your support on Thursday, and for coming out to vote for me as your Welsh Labour candidate in Cardiff North. The result was magnificent and It is a privilege to be able to call myself your MP. The work starts now, and I promise to ensure that Cardiff North has a strong voice in Westminster.”

 

We asked our Twitter followers what they’d like to see from Anna in her new job.

I’m hoping that Anna produces a good website and uses it to write about what she’s doing, why she’s doing it and how it’ll affect the communities in her constituency. I’m a big fan of social media but feel very strongly about the independent web and long form writing. When an MP has got a difficult or complex decision to make, I’d like to hear their thoughts and feelings about it. Anna’s colleague in Cardiff Central, Jo Stevens, publishes excellent articles about life in Westminster that provide a valuable insight into her work.

When an MP has got a difficult or complex decision to make, I’d like to hear their thoughts and feelings about it.

I’d love to hear your thoughts about this. You can get in touch using this contact form or send me a Tweet.

General Election 2017: Result and Reactions

Anna

Anna McMorrin has won the Cardiff North seat with 26, 081 votes.

Labour

Anna McMorrin 26,081 50.1 +11.9
Conservative Craig Williams 21,907 42.1 -0.3
Plaid Cymru Steffan Webb 1,738 3.3 -1.2
Liberal Democrat Matthew Hemsley 1,714 3.3 -0.5

UKIP

Gary Oldfield 582 1.1 -6.6

 

Candidate Comments – Gary Oldfield

 Gary

General

Question 1 – Why are you standing for Cardiff North?

As a father of two, I am very familiar with the issues confronting ordinary families. I’m a long standing Cardiff resident and I am very much on the side of local communities and hard-working people in Cardiff North.

Question 2 – What personal qualities do you have that would make you a good MP?

I’m a self employed businessman with a wealth of life experience and work hard to provide for my family. I would bring that same determination and commitment to the people of Cardiff North if elected as their MP.

Question 3 – When did you join your party and why?

I joined UKIP two years ago because the main two parties are forever arguing, don’t deliver, and cannot keep their promises. That is why I joined UKIP, because UKIP is the only Party that provides a real voice for change.

National Issues

Question 4 – What pledges in your manifesto would you change?

UKIP has put forward an excellent manifesto both nationally and here in Wales which I’m happy to support. UKIP is a democratic party and, like all parties, some people will disagree, but personally I’m happy with what we’re proposing. If anything, I’d like to see us go further on some of our stretching targets around things like delivering affordable homes.

Question 5 – Where do you stand on brexit and how do you think the process will affect Cardiff North?

Whatever happens on June 8th, Theresa May will be negotiating Brexit after the election. We need to ensure that she gets us the Brexit that the Leave voters wanted. This means tight controls for immigration, and a sovereign UK outside the jurisdiction of the European Courts. There’s a bright future for Cardiff North after Brexit and UKIP will hold the Government’s feet to the firer to ensure they deliver.

Question 6 – What national issues would you like to get involved in and why?

The NHS is important to all of us. We’d pay for more spending on the NHS by cutting the foreign aid budget. Under UKIP’s plan we’d still give 0.2% of GDP to foreign aid (about the same as Obama did in the USA) but scrap the unrealistic 0.7% target. We’d save another £2 billion per year by ensuring that everyone coming to the UK has medical insurance and ending health tourism.

Local Issues

Question 7 – What local issues will you prioritise?

One of the major issues affecting people in Cardiff North is the difficulty in commuting into Cardiff on a daily basis. Traffic gridlock, particularly on Manor Way and Caerphilly Road causes delays and frustration for workers and those on the school run. We need to tackle this, and also provide better public transport links, ensuring that Cardiff North gains the full benefit of the South Wales Metro.

Question 8 – For local issues that aren’t an MP’s direct responsibility, how will you make a difference?

MPs provide an important voice for local people and are able to influence decision makers at other levels of Government on a wide range of issues. Listening to the views of constituents is a crucial part of the role, as well as acting on their concerns.

Question 9 – What will you do to ensure you’re a visible MP?

I’ll ensure that I hold regular surgeries throughout the constituency, as well as keeping up an active social media presence and issuing a regular newsletter so people can keep up to date with my work.

Miscellaneous

Question 10 – What’s the most difficult question you’ve been asked during the campaign and how did you reply?

I was asked why people should trust politicians because, the questioner said, they always lie! Well, we want to change the democratic system so that you have the right to recall your MP if they’re doing a bad job and force another election. We’re the turkeys voting for Christmas (just like we were in the European Parliament when we supported Brexit). Why? Because we’re not in it for ourselves but for the good of the country.

Question 11 – What would you say to someone who isn’t planning on voting?

This is probably the most important election in a generation. We have to hold the Conservatives’ feet to the fire on Brexit and we can’t risk either a huge Tory majority or the shambles of a Labour Government. Whatever you do on June 8th, please set aside just a few minutes of your time to go and vote, and of course if you decide to vote for UKIP, you’ll be voting for real change.

Question 12 – What’s your favourite biscuit?

Chocolate Digestive