How We Won Better Rail


Well, what a way to return from ten days’ holiday! The announcement of the new franchise a few weeks ago felt like a very, very early Christmas present. It is hard to overstate the importance of this decision: quite simply, it will change Ipswich and our region for the better.…

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A New Job

Photo: East Anglian Daily Times

Reshuffles are very strange things. You have no idea when you are going to get a call and when it comes, you have no idea whether it means a new job or a return to the backbenches. Westminster and Whitehall are quietened but with an unnerving sense of expectancy in…

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Winerack: A New Beginning

The Winerack. Named by The Ipswich Star and for years now a symbol of our town’s arrested development. I could go through the sordid history but it will depress you and I want now to cheer you all up. The long and the short of it is that the financing…

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The EU: power in your hands

pic to go with 20 may article

There are few offices in the world that have quite so good a view as mine in the Department of Health. My windows look down straight over the Cenotaph and across Whitehall, with some beautiful London plane trees framing the view. It is such a good sight that I always…

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This is what Brexit means for Ipswich


All that talk about recession – it all sounds far too theoretical doesn’t it? Just a load of economists trying to predict the future? Well, I agree. So I’m going to go on a quick safari around Ipswich to show where those numbers come from, and how they are very,…

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Let’s talk about immigration

Let’s talk about immigration: not a phrase you would have heard many mainstream politicians say a few years ago. The subject was out of bounds, off the reservation, verboten. Why? Because good people feared, for the right reasons, that talking about immigration stoked racism and prejudice. But they were wrong.…

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Ipswich Vision – What Have We Achieved?


In his column in the Star yesterday, Paul Geater sharpened his pen and made a typically perceptive critique of how far the Ipswich Vision had got in its first eight months. He observed that whilst the aspirations were sound, not much progress had yet been made. He singled out the…

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A Healthier Country in the EU


We all know people who bang on about their pet obsessions. For a few of my colleagues, a mercifully small number, it is Europe. You will know that I am not one of them: I got into politics for several reasons but Europe was not one of them. However, to…

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