Two Bridges, One Suffolk

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On Friday I walked along the Ipswich Marina dockside and the sun was shining as I headed for the press announcement of the Architectural Practice we have appointed to Design the Upper Orwell Crossing in Ipswich…Foster + Partners who are one of the world’s foremost practices.  Who also have a wonderful track record in Ipswich having already designed the iconic Willis Building in 1975 that looks as if it was completed yesterday.

Earlier in the day I was ready about the press launch of the Lake Loathing Bridge announcement which was led by my colleague Guy McGregor.

These press events follow years of lobbying and hard work by Councillors and our great Local MPs Peter Aldous and Ben Gummer. The County has provided all the technical answers to the various questions and loops you must go through when obtaining funding and this has resulted in £73.39M from central Government for the Lowestoft bridge and £77.546M for the Ipswich bridges.  The County Council took a paper to Cabinet in May 2016 pledging the reminder of the monies £18.3M for the Lowestoft Bridge and about £19.1M for the Ipswich bridges.  Which demonstrated our commitment to these two exciting projects, both have different aims but both demonstrate Conservatives are committed to investing in our county’s infrastructure across Suffolk.

As you can see from the visuals the bridges will address the difficulty in getting about in Lowestoft and in Ipswich the bridges will open up significant high value employment land in a beautiful part of our County Town.

In the recent Annual Budget the Labour party proposed the spending of the general reserve over the next two years and then they would be eating into the very money allocated for these Bridge projects, their manifesto would cost so much that by the time the Council needed to contribute the sum we have promised there would be no money left with which to do so and we would have to borrow it!

So, imagine the irony when last week when Labour said the money is not there to build the Lake Loathing crossing in Lowestoft.  While I would not go as far to suggest this is “Fake News’, it would be fair to say the claim is entirely false. The funding required to complete Lake Loathing Third crossing is there and we are committed to ensuring the projects are completed. The shamelessness of the Corbynistas is just staggering.

My response to Labour’s comments was simple “The bridges will be build”.

And what I mean by that is, back in the real world, we have made a financial commitment to these two important projects in our County and if elected they will be built by a Conservative County Council.

Vote Conservative on 4th May.

Suffolk Conservative’s Training Day

2014_10_11 Suffolk Conservatives Training DayOn Saturday Conservative Candidates from across Suffolk gathered in Stowmarket for a training day called the Road to 2015, looking at how to campaign in the local election and the general elections on the same day.

I kicked off the proceedings and spoke for 30 minutes about social media and a few reflections on what I think it is, what I think it isn’t and some of the things I have learnt over the past couple of years as I’ve dipped my toe in the water of the subject. At the start we did a short session about what people see as the advantage and disadvantages of social media. I then talked about the Facebook discussions that raged late last year as the Trustees of the Lakenheath Residential Care Home took the difficult decision to close it doors. We discussed twitter, blogs, ‘up my street’ and the many other ways to use social media to engage with residents and build networks as you work to get my message across.

Next up we heard from Richard from the CCA about canvassing and how to engage with people on the door step, later we heard from Paul from CCHQ about the software updates we would be getting shortly to help us in our canvassing and campaigning. And in between them we heard from Ben Gummer MP who spoke about that very morning’s canvass in Ipswich and the campaign he was engaged in, Vicky Ford MEP spoke about her reflections on may’s Euro Elections and the Clacton By-Election and then we had a flying visit from the Conservative Prospective Parliamentary Candidate in North Norfolk Ann Steward about her campaign to give North Norfolk the kind of local representation it deserves and how she is going about winning back voters and unseating the lib dems Norman Lamb.

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