North West’s not just about Manchester!

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I SPENT a lot of last week finding out what people in the constituency really feel about the Budget.

If I can sum up the general view by quoting one of my constituents from Fleetwood, ‘Considering the poor hand he had, the lad didn’t do too badly’, which I think sums it up quite well.

I welcomed the decision in the budget to create Enterprise Zones to help create new job opportunities. There is a general feeling that over the last 13 years that Fleetwood has been forgotten, we have a port, now without a ferry service; a train line without a train on it and companies that want to expand and take on apprentices, yet are trapped by regulation and legislation.

As I am constantly trying to make clear in London, the North West does not begin and end with Manchester.

I stressed this in the house of Commons Budget debate, let’s hope a minister was listening.

On a more positive note, I was delighted to read in last week’s edition of the Weekly News, that the Strawberry Gardens in to reopen shortly.

Supporting the pub industry is very important. The local pub is the hub of the community and over the last few years too many have been forced out of business. I am working with others in the cross-party ‘Save the Pub’ group at Westminster to defend our pub trade.