Welfare Reform bill – My reply to John McDonnell MP

Dear John

I saw your eye catching response to the Welfare Reform Bill in Parliament on line (Below)

You raise some very valid points but as usual fail to identify the root causes of the issues in our area.

As UKIP’s Hayes & Harlington spokesman and effectively the opposition party in the constituency, here is my reply to your speech.

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The truth about Hillingdon Council’s ‘Financial Prudence’

Hillingdon council cabinetOur national debt recently exceeded the £1.5 trillion mark – We spend more money in interest payments on the debt annually than we do on defence. Locally, our Conservative Council constantly tell you about their outstanding financial record in much the same way as their national party do at Westminster. ‘Council tax frozen’ is one of their favourite cries, neglecting to mention that Hillingdon levies one of the highest council tax bills in London already.

Their ‘financial prudence’ claims are further tested by the write off of £2.5 million of your money in 2011 in a failed Icelandic Bank, with millions still owing from Landsbanki and Heritable.

 

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A picture of life outside the European Union (EU) – 2020

You will hear a lot of scare stories about how our country will struggle if we leave the EU from those in the ‘Yes’ campaign.

Here is what it could really be like……..

 

EDP pictures 028The year is 2020 and Britain is adjusting to life and thriving outside of the declining European Union.

Free from the need to negotiate trade deals via unelected EU commissioners, a series of agreements with the emerging nations of the world have boosted exports and revitalised our industries. Unwilling to lose their largest European market, the remaining EU states have swiftly confirmed free trade agreements with the UK and the job losses predicted by the ‘Yes’ campaign fail to materialise.

Re-engaging with our traditional world partners, most notably the Commonwealth, has invigorated our shipping industries and cities such as Liverpool and Glasgow once again hum to the sound of machinery as exports grow and vessels come and go, offloading such produce as New Zealand lamb and transporting out machinery exports, pharmaceuticals and high tech equipment.

With much of the EU red tape removed from our small and medium industries they once again start to drive economic growth. Repeal of EU diktat on renewable energy and the large combustion plant directive means that energy once again becomes cheaper, driving down costs for businesses and making them more competitive on the world stage.

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Yet another iconic local firm to go?

Hillingdon has been home to many iconic English firms down the years, including Penguin Books,Technicolour and EMI – Indeed, even my favourite chocolate makers Cadbury’s had a presence in the Borough until recently.

Now we have received the news that United Biscuits( manufacturer of the classic Penguin biscuit)  who are stationed near to my family home in Hayes End, are on the verge of being taken over by a Chinese company, Bright Foods.

So what is the problem, you may ask, if it keeps people in jobs? Therein lies the problem – How many firms over the last ten years have been bought out by overseas owners, only to see their promises of keeping jobs locally betrayed?

BMW took over Rover, and destroyed it just to get their hands on the Land Rover and Mini brands, whilst the last 20 years have been rife with sellouts of our manufacturing firms to overseas companies, who have taken the corporate identities but switched their manufacturing abroad to make more profits.

When US giant Kraft took over Cadbury, they gave assurances about  protection of jobs for the English workforce – Since then, manufacturing at plants that have been a mainstay of local communities have been switched to Eastern Europe, whilst 150 people at the Uxbridge office in Sanderson Road were also made redundant.

Some maintain that ‘market forces’ will dictate that a brand needs to manufacture at a lower price to survive, whilst others quote that ‘you can get a better product at a lower price’ by moving your production out of the UK. In the case of Cadbury, this is blatantly untrue – My nephew lives in the USA at the moment, and the thing that he always asks my sister to get for him to take back when he visits England is ‘proper chocolate’ – Funnily enough, Cadbury’s is his favourite brand too!

The Germans have also shown that price is immaterial when it comes to brand and quality – If we all wanted a  cheap product, we would be driving Korean and Malaysian built cars, yet BMW,Volkswagen and Mercedes consistently top the sales figures, despite being more expensive to buy than Far East manufactured motors. The really funny part about this figure is that despite their reputations and brand loyalty, all three have been beaten in reliability tests recently by Honda,Nissan and Toyota – All of which are now built in England!

If United is to be sold off to the Chinese, then the government need to have assurances made regarding local jobs, and have these assurances written in to any takeover agreement. If not, then the sale should not be allowed to go ahead, especially as the company as it stands now is profitable and not in need of a takeover to prop it up on the stock markets.