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August turned out to be politically-busy, even though the rest of the country was taking a summer break. There was Afghanistan, of course, which meant Parliament was recalled for a special one-off session to debate how to handle the effects of an extremely frustrating American decision to pull out. Plus I led a pretty-unusual political alliance of Free-Market Think Tanks and Anti-Corruption NGOs, asking Ministers for more transparency to make sure our new post-EU subsidy regime is as clean and efficient as possible. And of course there was the always-unwelcome news of whopping great energy price rises in spite of the energy price cap, where I’ve been arguing that there’s a better alternative which means it doesn’t have to be this way. 

Locally, I was extremely proud to be a guest at Weston Rotary Club’s 100 year celebration at Weston Museum, commemorating a century of good works and charity fundraising for our local community. And there was a visit to a CityFibre project installing superfast broadband near Milton, which is a great example of one of the 3 firms competing to end slow speeds and unreliable service in our town. Plus I did a couple of laps of Weston Pier with local fundraiser Paul Hobbs, who was walking a marathon for the British Heart Foundation at 72 years young, after some pretty serious heart troubles himself. He was well up for the challenge, but if you want to know more then read on………

Best wishes,

What I’ve been up to this month

John joins Weston Rotary Club to celebrate 100 years
Weston Rotary Club celebrated its centenary year by holding an exhibition in Weston Museum to showcase its work over the last century. John attended the event along with other notable figures from Weston’s past and present. 
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John joins BBC Radio 4 discussion on the Energy Price Cap

John joins a BBC Radio 4 discussion on the Energy Price Cap, saying that it: “isn’t doing what it needed to do”, partly because it was only re-set every six months, whereas wholesale costs could change much more quickly… Read more

John visits fibre project in Weston

CityFibre gave John a closer look at its £22m project which will connect homes and businesses in the town to a new full fibre network.    Read more

John speaks with John Pienaar of The Times about the importance of getting the subsidy system right

In this interview, John explains why the Government risks distorting the economy and encouraging cronyism unless it opens up its new subsidies system to more radical transparency. Read more

Something we think is impor​tant, but you may have missed…

Ten point plan to boost manufacturing can help drive levelling up agenda

A combination of lots of good, new jobs in rival white-collar industries sucking talented people away to work in things like finance or software development, together with a toxic mix of cheap foreign competitors, high energy prices at home and a lingering snobbishness about roles that might involve getting your hands dirty,… ​Read more​

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24-26 Alexandra Parade
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