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E-scooters will be fitted with number plates on the front and back

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e scooters will be fitted with number plates on the front and back

Electric scooters will now be fitted with number plates to help track antisocial riders amid warnings that users in England are the worst behaved in Europe. 

The license plates will be installed on the front and back of the e-scooters over the next few weeks, despite not being required by law. 

Voi, the Swedish company behind the recent e-scooter trials in Coventry and 12 other cities, will look to introduce a series of new measures to improve safety.  

It will also bring in more staff to monitor the scheme, a ‘one strike and you’re out’ ban on people who misuse them and incentives to complete a driver training course. 

Voi decided to suspend its trial in Coventry after just five days, where its scooters were used by 5,000 people. 

The suspension came amid reported of riders mounting pavements and riding in pedestrianised areas. 

Voi, the Swedish company behind the recent e-scooter trials in Coventry and 12 other cities, has complained about anti-social behaviour in the UK

Voi, the Swedish company behind the recent e-scooter trials in Coventry and 12 other cities, has complained about anti-social behaviour in the UK

Voi decided to suspend its trial in Coventry after just five days, where its scooters were used by 5,000 people

Voi decided to suspend its trial in Coventry after just five days, where its scooters were used by 5,000 people

Another trial run by a separate company in Middlesbrough was also scaled back last month, following reports of under-age users causing havoc.  

Richard Corbett, Voi’s general manager for Britain and Ireland, said: ‘We have an antisocial behaviour issue. That is something that is not unique to Coventry or Middlesbrough or any city. I think we have an antisocial behaviour issue across the country and, when launching, there is a small minority that are ruining it for the majority.

‘We haven’t seen this level of antisocial behaviour in any other market. We have had great experience of it but the volume of it in the UK was quite surprising.’ 

He added that extra measures would be introduced to stop anti-social behaviour. 

It is hoped that the Coventry scheme will restart next month.

Mr Corbett said Voi had agreed with Coventry council to implement number plates. 

Where can I ride an e-scooter? It’s okay on the roads… but not on the pavements 

Riding rental e-scooters on the roads and cycle paths became legal on July 4. 

However, riding these scooters on pavements will remain illegal and will only be allowed in pre-approved locations where the hiring scheme is taking place. 

It will still be illegal to ride privately-owned electric scooters on the pavement, roads and cycle paths.

You can only ride your own e-scooter on private land, with permission from the person who owns the land. 

You must have a driving licence or a provisional driving licence and be at least 16 years old to hire an electric scooter. 

They will be limited to a maximum speed of 15.5mph and it’s recommended that riders wear a helmet, though it isn’t mandatory.  

Privately-owned e-scooters cannot be legally ridden on the roads because they don’t always have visible rear red lights, number plates or signally ability. 

They are treated the same as motor vehicles because they are classified as Personal Light Electric Vehicles (PLEVs). 

This means they are subject to the same legal requirements as other motor vehicles and must therefore have MOT, tax, licensing and specific construction.   

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However, he expressed his frustration at the situation and added: ‘It is unfortunate that we need to babysit the customer and we shouldn’t have to do that and we don’t want to do it.’

The trial was launched in Coventry and Birmingham, where a tour guide warned members of the public ‘are going to get killed’.

Jonathan Berg, who runs Positively Birmingham walking tours, said he was horrified when his young female assistant guide was ‘toppled like a tree from behind’ on Saturday.

Mr Berg said she was knocked over by an e-scooter rider despite there being plenty of room for social distancing.

The former medical professor said: ‘Luckily this scooter was not going fast.

‘We had several near-misses from very fast machines – people are going to get killed if we do not police this urgently.

‘The e-scooters have given a green light to everyone who wants to be reckless.

‘The scooters only started on Thursday and, overall, seem like a great idea but they are not without risk.

‘When we introduce them into the city, we need to be really careful that we police their introduction in a way that people understand how to use them in an appropriate way.’

Mr Berg said the Voi app was revealing some of the scooters were already in suburbs as far afield as Perry Barr.

And one Voi rep revealed on Sunday: “We’ve also been told there’s one in a canal.

The Department for Transport launched a new 12 month scheme at the start of July which would make it legal to ride e-scooters on roads – they would, however, need to be rented and would be capped at 15.5mph.

Local authorities have to opt into the scheme, while private companies provide the hire-vehicles. 

Coventry City Council paused the scheme on Monday. 

A spokesman for the council said: ‘The initial take-up has been encouraging but we need to ensure that the safety of all people using the city centre is protected and that the e-scooters are used in the proper way, hence our decision to pause the pilot until systems are improved.’ 

Riding rental e-scooters on the roads and cycle paths became legal on July 4. 

Milton Keynes and Birmingham have successfully launched the scheme, with around 50 local authorities thought to be interested. 

However, riding these scooters on pavements will remain illegal and will only be allowed in pre-approved locations where the hiring scheme is taking place. 

It will still be illegal to ride privately-owned electric scooters on the pavement, roads and cycle paths.

You can only ride your own e-scooter on private land, with permission from the person who owns the land. 

YouTube star and TV presenter Emily Hartridge, 34, became the first person in the UK to die in an e-scooter accident when she was struck by a lorry in Battersea in July 2019

YouTube star and TV presenter Emily Hartridge, 34, became the first person in the UK to die in an e-scooter accident when she was struck by a lorry in Battersea in July 2019

You must have a driving licence or a provisional driving licence and be at least 16 years old to hire an electric scooter. 

Road safety groups and charities advocating for protection of people with sensory difficulties have raised serious objections to the legalisation of e-scooters.

Chris Theobald, public affairs manager at Guide Dogs, said: ‘E-scooters are extremely difficult for blind and partially sighted people to detect and avoid because they operate quietly which makes them difficult to hear. 

‘It’s disappointing that despite sharing information and best practice guidelines with all operators, reassurances made by some operators about safety and use of e-scooters have not been met. 

‘Local authorities running the trials need to make sure that operators are meeting their obligations and if the trials are not being run safely, they need to be reviewed and paused immediately if necessary.’

Andrew Hodgson, president of the National Federation for the Blind, said in June: ‘After learning about the accidents e-scooters have caused, it is very clear to me they are not fit for purpose.

‘Riders appear to fall from them very easily, causing serious head injuries along with many broken bones.

‘It is also clear from practical experience, dockless e-scooters simply do not work as the machines can end up anywhere in the city.

‘This causes totally random potential barriers to access across city pavement and public space for disabled and elderly people and mothers with buggies.

‘At a time of social distancing when urgency has been placed by the Government on active travel, it is critical that all spare public space on the highway is protected for walking and cycling.

‘E-scooters will only take people away from active travel and those embracing walking and cycling will be faced with danger and chaos if e-scooters are legalised in the UK.’ 

There were 32 collisions involving e-scooters in 2019, including Emily Hartridge, who was the only fatality.

YouTube star and TV presenter Ms Hartridge became the first person in the UK to be killed while riding an e-scooter when she was struck by a lorry in Battersea, south London, in July last year.

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British tourist dies after being pulled unconscious from the pool of a four-star hotel in Lanzarote

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british tourist dies after being pulled unconscious from the pool of a four star hotel in lanzarote

A British holidaymaker has died in hospital after being pulled from a Spanish hotel swimming pool in a ‘critical condition’.

The woman was in cardiac arrest when she was pulled from the pool in Lanzarote and revived at the scene by a lifeguard and emergency responders.

Police on the island confirmed today she had lost her fight for life after being rushed to Doctor Jose Molina Hospital in the island capital Lanzarote.

A routine investigation into her death, coordinated by a local court, is now underway.

The alarm was raised just before 5pm on Thursday by staff at the four-star HL Rio Playa

The dead woman is understood to have been staying at the hotel with her partner.

There were conflicting reports about her age, as she was initially said to have been aged 35 in a statement put out by an emergency response coordination centre whereas police sources have said she was 58.

One well-placed source said: ‘It all happened so quickly.

‘The lifeguard pulled her out of the water and stabilised her with CPR but sadly she died shortly after arriving at hospital.’

Health sources confirmed she had died in A&E at Doctor Jose Molina Hospital.

A Civil Guard source also confirmed the British woman’s death, adding: ‘A routine investigation is underway but there is nothing pointing to any criminality in what happened.

‘The investigating court will be sent the post mortem results and will instruct police to carry out any further inquiries if it is deemed appropriate.

‘The autopsy will shed more light on what exactly occurred.’

In a statement released before it emerged the British woman had died, a spokesman for a regional government-run emergency coordination centre said: ‘A 35-year-old British woman was pulled from the water after going into cardiac arrest and symptoms of near-drowning at a hotel in Playa Blanca in the municipality of Yaiza.

‘The alarm was raised just before 5pm on Thursday.

‘She was taken by ambulance to Doctor Jose Molina Orosa in a critical condition.’

Playa Blanca, on the south side of Lanzarote, is considered to be the third largest tourist area on the island.

It has one of the best pleasure ports on the island and is close to the Papagayo beaches with their white sand and crystalline waters.

At the end of last month two youngsters on holiday with their families died within hours of each other following separate Spanish swimming pool tragedies.

A child aged three drowned at a pool in Pilar de la Horadada near Torrevieja on the Costa Blanca, around 9pm on August 27.

Local reports said a second youngster aged six believed to be a relative had discovered the boy in the water and alerted his parents.

Emergency responders tried without success for nearly an hour to save his life when they reached the scene. The youngster was French.

The incident, at a house on a residential estate called Pinar de Campoverde, happened hours after a four-year-old boy who was rescued from a pool at a water park in Tarragona 300 miles north, lost his fight for life in hospital.

The youngster had been admitted to the city’s Joan XXIII Hospital four days earlier.

He was assisted after being pulled out of a pool at the Aquopolis Costa Dorada near Salou as the water park was about to close.

The Pilar de la Horadada drowning was the fourth in a month in a Costa Blanca swimming pool which had claimed the life of a young child.

On July 29 a Dutch girl aged four drowned at a pool in Calpe north of Benidorm at the northern end of the famous stretch of coastline.

On August 5 a four-year-old Belgian boy was found floating in a pool at a relative’s house in the Brit-popular area of Ciudad Quesada near Torrevieja where his parents had made a stopover.

They had only arrived hours earlier and were due to stay the night before continuing to Castellon further north.

Local reports said one one of his relatives, described as a nurse, jumped into the pool to pull him out and emergency responders spent nearly 45 minutes trying to revive him without success.

On August 9 a two-year-old boy drowned at his parents’ holiday villa in nearby La Zenia.

His body was discovered by his teenage sister.

The French family had only just arrived at the villa two days before the tragedy.

Initial reports at the time pointed to the boy, one of five children, drowning after leaving the villa unnoticed while the rest of the family was inside.

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Chef Jamie Oliver joins Mail on Sunday’s war on toxic US food

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chef jamie oliver joins mail on sundays war on toxic us food

A powerful alliance of chefs, celebrities and charities today urges Boris Johnson to block sub-standard foods from flooding into the UK under post-Brexit trade deals.

In a heartfelt open letter, stars including Jamie Oliver and fitness guru Joe Wicks call on the Prime Minister not to ‘trade away our children’s futures’ in the negotiations.

The move comes as International Trade Secretary Liz Truss faces growing Parliamentary pressure to bolster protections against poor quality foreign food – and save British farms from being put out of business by cheap imports.

In a crunch Commons debate expected within the next fortnight, MPs will vote on new plans to give watchdogs on the Trade and Agriculture Commission the power to enforce high food standards.

The letter – also backed by BBC Countryfile presenter Anita Rani, chef Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and charities including the RSPB and RSPCA – demands assurances that ‘lower-standard’ meat, such as US-produced chlorinated chicken or hormone-fed beef, will not be sold in British stores or served in restaurants and canteens after we exit the EU’s standards regime.

And they say that the Covid-19 pandemic has ‘raised the stakes’ because ‘now, more than ever, we need to make sure everyone has access to affordable, good quality and sustainable food to help people be healthier, happier and more resilient’.

Chefs Jamie Oliver and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall demand assurances that 'lower-standard' meat, such as US-produced chlorinated chicken or hormone-fed beef, will not be sold in British stores or served in restaurants and canteens after we exit the EU's standards regime

Chefs Jamie Oliver and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall demand assurances that ‘lower-standard’ meat, such as US-produced chlorinated chicken or hormone-fed beef, will not be sold in British stores or served in restaurants and canteens after we exit the EU’s standards regime

Fitness guru Joe Wicks has also called on the Prime Minister not to 'trade away our children's futures' in the negotiations

Fitness guru Joe Wicks has also called on the Prime Minister not to ‘trade away our children’s futures’ in the negotiations

The letter sent by an alliance of chefs, celebrities and charities to the Prime Minister

The letter sent by an alliance of chefs, celebrities and charities to the Prime Minister

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The letter sent by an alliance of chefs, celebrities and charities 

We’ve known for generations that good food is the backbone of good health. But the pandemic has raised the stakes. Now, more than ever, we need to make sure everyone has access to affordable, good-quality and sustainable food to help people be healthier, happier and more resilient.

The UK is at a crossroads that will affect what we eat for generations to come. The trade deals we’re currently negotiating with countries across the world will determine what ends up on our supermarket shelves and in our shopping baskets. If we don’t get this right, progress made as a result of your Government’s obesity and health strategy could be wiped out.

We all want trade – but let’s not enter a race to the bottom and allow low-quality products to flood the UK. Chlorinated chicken will be just the tip of the iceberg. We’re talking about meat produced with growth hormones and high amounts of antibiotics, crops grown with illegal pesticides that are harmful to bees, and a flood of sugary and ultra-processed products, promoted with massive marketing spends and without clear labelling to tell us what we’re really eating.

We must not lose control of what ends up on the plates of British children. If we get this wrong, the impact on their health will be profound. It will be the most vulnerable in our communities who will suffer the most. Bad trade deals will also have a worrying impact on the environment and on animal welfare. Two things that the British public cares deeply about.

The UK has a fantastic opportunity to set out our stall as Brand Britain, standing for high-quality food that is produced to high animal welfare and sustainability standards. Producing exports that resonate all over the world.

More than one million people have already signed the petition to #SaveOurStandards. In response, the Government has launched a new Trade and Agriculture Commission. But it lacks teeth, will last only six months, and worryingly doesn’t include people who understand child health, environmental issues, or animal welfare.

We want to ensure that environmental, animal welfare and food-safety standards are enshrined in law and upheld in all UK produced and imported products. We want to see a strong Trade and Agriculture Commission that can offer genuine checks and balances, with a broader membership including public health and environmental voices.

And we want to see the Government implement plans to reduce child obesity quickly, including having clear nutrition labels on all products and restrictions on junk-food advertising.

Let us build a healthier Britain. We must not trade away our children’s futures.

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The letter – an edited version of which is reproduced right – warns Mr Johnson: ‘If we don’t get this right, progress made as a result of your Government’s obesity and health strategy could be wiped out. 

‘Let’s not enter a race to the bottom and allow low quality products to flood the UK. Chlorinated chicken will be just the tip of the iceberg. We’re talking about meat produced with growth hormones and high amounts of antibiotics, crops grown with illegal pesticides that are harmful to bees, and a flood of sugary and ultra-processed products, promoted with massive marketing spends and without clear labelling to tell us what we’re really eating’. 

The letter also argues that ‘the British public cares deeply’ about these issues – a point emphasised by a Mail on Sunday poll today which shows an overwhelming majority of voters want our high food standards protected in future trade agreements. 

The Deltapoll survey reveals that 68 per cent of people believed the most important priority for Britain was to maintain high standards for food, even if that mean some trade deals were not possible as a result.

Only one in five (21 per cent) thought that compromising on standards was acceptable to get a deal over the line.

This newspaper is today urging readers who back the campaign to send a version of the letter to their local Tory MP, as Opposition MPs are already expected to support moves to protect standards.

But last night, the Government came out fighting by branding the letter ‘totally misleading’ and insisting: ‘Our manifesto commitment could not be clearer – we will not compromise on our high environmental protection, animal welfare and food standards.’

The Government was heavily defeated in the Lords last week on its Agriculture Bill, when peers overwhelmingly backed calls for greater powers to block sub-standard food imports and moves to give Parliament the final say on post-Brexit trade deals.

By a majority of 107, peers backed a call from cross-bencher Lord Curry, a retired farmer, for the Trade and Agriculture Commission to be given greater, permanent, powers.

Peers also backed a call by Labour’s Lord Grantchester to keep out foods produced to standards lower than the UK’s. The Government defeats set up the prospect of a fresh Tory rebellion in the Commons next month when MPs debate changes to the Bill.

The issue has also become a flashpoint between Ministers and the National Farmers’ Union.

Last week, NFU president Minette Batters met Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove to urge him to beef up the commission, which is currently scheduled to last just six months and which, critics say, does not include specialists in child health or environmental and animal welfare issues on its panel. 

Amid mounting concern over Ms Truss’s ‘toothless’ commission, a Future British Standards Coalition is launched today, including representatives of the Tenant Farmers Association and the RSPCA.

It will be chaired by Kate Dalmeny from food and farming alliance Sustain. She said last night: ‘British people have made it abundantly clear that they expect to keep the high food, environmental and animal welfare standards they currently enjoy.’

So far, more than a million people have signed a petition to save food standards following the launch of The Mail on Sunday’s Save Our Family Farms campaign, with the backing of former Ministers Sir Nicholas Soames and Theresa Villiers.

BBC Countryfile presenter Anita Rani has also thrown her weight behind the campaign

BBC Countryfile presenter Anita Rani has also thrown her weight behind the campaign

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In an article on the facing page, former Environment Secretary Ms Villiers reminds the Prime Minister that the Tory manifesto for the 2019 Election pledged there would be no compromise on the UK’s world-beating food and animal welfare standards after Brexit.

Even George Eustice, the current Environment Secretary, has described animal welfare laws in the US as ‘woefully deficient’, with up to a million chickens crammed together in vast hanger-like facilities on some farms. Slaughtered chickens are sometimes washed in chlorine due to the number of bugs on American poultry farms, while US cattle farmers use steroid hormones to speed growth – a practice banned by the EU since 1989. One drug routinely used, 17-beta oestradiol, is a known cause of cancer in humans.

Jamie Oliver has previously called on Mr Johnson to be ‘a guardian to the land and its prosperity,’ rather than ‘someone who opened Pandora’s box to the quick erosion of the food and farming industries’.

Last night, senior Tory MP Neil Parish, who has already led one Commons Tory rebellion over post-Brexit food standards, urged the Government to compromise.

Mr Parish, chairman of the Commons’ environment, food and rural affairs committee, said: ‘The Lords picked up where we left off in the Commons, raising fundamental concerns about how food standards are going to be protected in the future. The Government still has an opportunity to act proactively on this.’

Ms Truss has repeatedly insisted that the Government will not abandon the UK’s high food standards and that there is no need to increase the powers of the temporary commission.

Last night, a Government spokesperson said: ‘We remain focused on getting trade deals that work in the best interests of our farmers and consumers. British farming sits at the heart of our trade policy, and the Trade and Agriculture Commission will help ensure that the UK’s high-quality agriculture sector remains among the most competitive and innovative at the world.’ 

As things stand the Government is telling Tory MPs not to back the amendments to the Agriculture Bill. Here is a list of Conservative MPs you can lobby with our letter. 

TORY MPs: CONSTITUENCY, MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT AND EMAIL ADDRESSES
Constituency Member of Parliament Email address
Aberconwy Robin Millar robin.millar.mp@parliament.uk
Aldershot Leo Docherty leo.docherty.mp@parliament.uk
Aldridge-Brownhills Wendy Morton wendy.morton.mp@parliament.uk
Altrincham and Sale West Sir Graham Brady altsale@parliament.uk
Amber Valley Nigel Mills nigel.mills.mp@parliament.uk
Arundel and South Downs Andrew Griffith Andrew@GriffithMP.com
Ashfield Lee Anderson lee.anderson.mp@parliament.uk
Ashford Damian Green damian.green.mp@parliament.uk
Aylesbury Rob Butler rob.butler.mp@parliament.uk
Banbury Victoria Prentis victoria.prentis.mp@parliament.uk
Banff and Buchan David Duguid david.duguid.mp@parliament.uk
Barrow and Furness Simon Fell simon.fell.mp@parliament.uk
Basildon and Billericay John Baron baronj@parliament.uk
Basingstoke Maria Miller maria.miller.mp@parliament.uk
Bassetlaw Brendan Clarke-Smith brendan.clarkesmith.mp@parliament.uk
Beaconsfield Joy Morrissey joy.morrissey.mp@parliament.uk
Beckenham Bob Stewart bob.stewart.mp@parliament.uk
Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk John Lamont john.lamont.mp@parliament.uk
Berwick-upon-Tweed Anne-Marie Trevelyan annemarie.trevelyan.mp@parliament.uk
Beverley and Holderness Graham Stuart grahamstuartmp@parliament.uk
Bexhill and Battle Huw Merriman huw.merriman.mp@parliament.uk
Bexleyheath and Crayford Sir David Evennett david.evennett.mp@parliament.uk
Birmingham, Northfield Gary Sambrook gary.sambrook.mp@parliament.uk
Bishop Auckland Dehenna Davison dehenna.davison.mp@parliament.uk
Blackpool North and Cleveleys Paul Maynard paul.maynard.mp@parliament.uk
Blackpool South Scott Benton scott.benton.mp@parliament.uk
Blyth Valley Ian Levy ian.levy.mp@parliament.uk
Bognor Regis and Littlehampton Nick Gibb gibbn@parliament.uk
Bolsover Mark Fletcher mark.fletcher.mp@parliament.uk
Bolton North East Mark Logan mark.logan.mp@parliament.uk
Bolton West Chris Green chris.green.mp@parliament.uk
Boston and Skegness Matt Warman matt.warman.mp@parliament.uk
Bosworth Dr Luke Evans luke.evans.mp@parliament.uk
Bournemouth East Tobias Ellwood tobias.ellwood.mp@parliament.uk
Bournemouth West Conor Burns conor.burns.mp@parliament.uk
Bracknell James Sunderland james.sunderland.mp@parliament.uk
Braintree James Cleverly james.cleverly.mp@parliament.uk
Brecon and Radnorshire Fay Jones fay.jones.mp@parliament.uk
Brentwood and Ongar Alex Burghart alex.burghart.mp@parliament.uk
Bridgend Dr Jamie Wallis jamie.wallis.mp@parliament.uk
Bridgwater and West Somerset Ian Liddell-Grainger ianlg@parliament.uk
Brigg and Goole Andrew Percy andrew.percy.mp@parliament.uk
Broadland Jerome Mayhew jerome.mayhew.mp@parliament.uk
Bromley and Chislehurst Sir Robert Neill bob.neill.mp@parliament.uk
Bromsgrove Sajid Javid sajid.javid.mp@parliament.uk
Broxbourne Sir Charles Walker charles.walker.mp@parliament.uk
Broxtowe Darren Henry darren.henry.mp@parliament.uk
Buckingham Greg Smith greg.smith.mp@parliament.uk
Burnley Antony Higginbotham antony.higginbotham.mp@parliament.uk
Burton Kate Griffiths kate.griffiths.mp@parliament.uk
Bury North James Daly james.daly.mp@parliament.uk
Bury South Christian Wakeford christian.wakeford.mp@parliament.uk
Bury St Edmunds Jo Churchill jo.churchill.mp@parliament.uk
Calder Valley Craig Whittaker craig.whittaker.mp@parliament.uk
Camborne and Redruth George Eustice george.eustice.mp@parliament.uk
Cannock Chase Amanda Milling amanda.milling.mp@parliament.uk
Carlisle John Stevenson john.stevenson.mp@parliament.uk
Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire Simon Hart simon.hart.mp@parliament.uk
Carshalton and Wallington Elliot Colburn elliot.colburn.mp@parliament.uk
Castle Point Rebecca Harris rebecca.harris.mp@parliament.uk
Central Devon Mel Stride mel.stride.mp@parliament.uk
Central Suffolk and North Ipswich Dr Dan Poulter daniel.poulter.mp@parliament.uk
Charnwood Edward Argar edward.argar.mp@parliament.uk
Chatham and Aylesford Tracey Crouch tracey.crouch.mp@parliament.uk
Cheadle Mary Robinson mary.robinson.mp@parliament.uk
Chelmsford Vicky Ford vicky.ford.mp@parliament.uk
Chelsea and Fulham Greg Hands handsg@parliament.uk
Cheltenham Alex Chalk alex.chalk.mp@parliament.uk
Chesham and Amersham Dame Cheryl Gillan cheryl.gillan.mp@parliament.uk
Chichester Gillian Keegan gillian.keegan.mp@parliament.uk
Chingford and Woodford Green Sir Iain Duncan Smith Iain.duncansmith.mp@parliament.uk
Chippenham Michelle Donelan michelle.donelan.mp@parliament.uk
Chipping Barnet Theresa Villiers theresa@theresavilliers.co.uk
Christchurch Sir Christopher Chope chopec@parliament.uk
Cities of London and Westminster Nickie Aiken nickie.aiken.mp@parliament.uk
Clacton Giles Watling giles.watling.mp@parliament.uk
Cleethorpes Martin Vickers martin.vickers.mp@parliament.uk
Clwyd South Simon Baynes simon.baynes.mp@parliament.uk
Clwyd West David Jones katharine.huggins@parliament.uk
Colchester William Quince will.quince.mp@parliament.uk
Colne Valley Jason McCartney jason.mccartney.mp@parliament.uk
Congleton Fiona Bruce fiona.bruce.mp@parliament.uk
Copeland Trudy Harrison trudy.harrison.mp@parliament.uk
Corby Tom Pursglove tom.pursglove.mp@parliament.uk
Crawley Henry Smith henry.smith.mp@parliament.uk
Crewe and Nantwich Dr Kieran Mullan kieran.mullan.mp@parliament.uk
Croydon South Chris Philp chris.philp.mp@parliament.uk
Darlington Peter Gibson peter.gibson.mp@parliament.uk
Dartford Gareth Johnson gareth.johnson.mp@parliament.uk
Daventry Chris Heaton-Harris chris.heatonharris.mp@parliament.uk
Delyn Rob Roberts rob.roberts.mp@parliament.uk
Derby North Amanda Solloway amanda.solloway.mp@parliament.uk
Derbyshire Dales Sarah Dines sarah.dines.mp@parliament.uk
Devizes Danny Kruger danny.kruger.mp@parliament.uk
Dewsbury Mark Eastwood mark.eastwood.mp@parliament.uk
Don Valley Nick Fletcher nick.fletcher.mp@parliament.uk
Dover Natalie Elphicke natalie.elphicke.mp@parliament.uk
Dudley North Marco Longhi marco.longhi.mp@parliament.uk
Dudley South Mike Wood mike.wood.mp@parliament.uk
Dumfries and Galloway Alister Jack alister.jack.mp@parliament.uk
Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale David Mundell david.mundell.mp@parliament.uk
East Devon Simon Jupp simon.jupp.mp@parliament.uk
East Hampshire Damian Hinds damian.hinds.mp@parliament.uk
East Surrey Claire Coutinho claire.coutinho.mp@parliament.uk
East Worthing and Shoreham Tim Loughton loughtont@parliament.uk
East Yorkshire Sir Greg Knight sothcottt@parliament.uk
Eastbourne Caroline Ansell caroline.ansell.mp@parliament.uk
Eastleigh Paul Holmes paul.holmes.mp@parliament.uk
Eddisbury Edward Timpson edward.timpson.mp@parliament.uk
Elmet and Rothwell Alec Shelbrooke alec.shelbrooke.mp@parliament.uk
Epsom and Ewell Chris Grayling chris.grayling.mp@parliament.uk
Erewash Maggie Throup maggie.throup.mp@parliament.uk
Esher and Walton Dominic Raab dominic.raab.mp@parliament.uk
Fareham Suella Braverman suella.braverman.mp@parliament.uk
Faversham and Mid Kent Helen Whately helen.whately.mp@parliament.uk
Filton and Bradley Stoke Jack Lopresti jack.lopresti.mp@parliament.uk
Finchley and Golders Green Mike Freer mike.freer.mp@parliament.uk
Folkestone and Hythe Damian Collins damian.collins.mp@parliament.uk
Forest of Dean Mark Harper mark.harper.mp@parliament.uk
Fylde Mark Menzies mark.menzies.mp@parliament.uk
Gainsborough Sir Edward Leigh edward.leigh.mp@parliament.uk
Gedling Tom Randall tom.randall.mp@parliament.uk
Gillingham and Rainham Rehman Chishti rehman.chishti.mp@parliament.uk
Gloucester Richard Graham richard.graham.mp@parliament.uk
Gosport Caroline Dinenage caroline.dinenage.mp@parliament.uk
Granntham and Stamford Gareth Davies gareth.davies.mp@parliament.uk
Gravesham Adam Holloway hollowaya@parliament.uk
Great Grimsby Lia Nici lia.nici.mp@parliament.uk
Great Yarmouth Brandon Lewis brandon.lewis.mp@parliament.uk
Guildford Angela Richardson angela.richardson.mp@parliament.uk
Halesowen and Rowley Regis James Morris james.morris.mp@parliament.uk
Haltemprice and Howden David Davis david.davis.mp@parliament.uk
Harborough Neil O’Brien neil.obrien.mp@parliament.uk
Harlow Robert Halfon halfon4harlow@roberthalfon.com
Harrogate and Knaresborough Andrew Jones andrew.jones.mp@parliament.uk
Harrow East Bob Blackman bob.blackman.mp@parliament.uk
Harwich and North Essex Sir Bernard Jenkin bernard.jenkin.mp@parliament.uk
Hastings and Rye Sally-Ann Hart sallyann.hart.mp@parliament.uk
Havant Alan Mak alan.mak.mp@parliament.uk
Hazel Grove William Wragg william@williamwragg.org.uk
Hemel Hempstead Sir Mike Penning mike.penning.mp@parliament.uk
Hendon Dr Matthew Offord matthew.offord.mp@parliament.uk
Henley John Howell howelljm@parliament.uk
Hereford and South Herefordshire Jesse Norman jesse.norman.mp@parliament.uk
Hertford and Stortford Julie Marson julie.marson.mp@parliament.uk
Hertsmere Oliver Dowden oliver.dowden.mp@parliament.uk
Hexham Guy Opperman guy.opperman.mp@parliament.uk
Heywood and Middleton Chris Clarkson chris.clarkson.mp@parliament.uk
High Peak Robert Largan mail@robertlargan.co.uk
Hitchin and Harpenden Bim Afolami bim.afolami.mp@parliament.uk
Hornchurch and Upminster Julia Lopez julia.lopez.mp@parliament.uk
Horsham Jeremy Quin jeremy.quin.mp@parliament.uk
Huntingdon Jonathan Djanogly jonathan.djanogly.mp@parliament.uk
Hyndburn Sara Britcliffe sara.britcliffe.mp@parliament.uk
Ipswich Tom Hunt tom.hunt.mp@parliament.uk
Isle of Wight Bob Seely bob.seely.mp@parliament.uk
Keighley Robbie Moore robbie.moore.mp@parliament.uk
Kenilworth and Southam Jeremy Wright Jeremy.wright.mp@parliament.uk
Kensington Felicity Buchan felicity.buchan.mp@parliament.uk
Kettering Philip Hollobone philip.hollobone.mp@parliament.uk
Kingswood Chris Skidmore chris.skidmore.mp@parliament.uk
Leigh James Grundy james.grundy.mp@parliament.uk
Lewes Maria Caulfield maria.caulfield.mp@parliament.uk
Lichfield Michael Fabricant fabricantm@parliament.uk
Lincoln Karl McCartney karl.mccartney.mp@parliament.uk
Loughborough Jane Hunt jane.hunt.mp@parliament.uk
Louth and Horncastle Victoria Atkins Victoria@victoriaatkins.org.uk
Ludlow Philip Dunne philip.dunne.mp@parliament.uk
Macclesfield David Rutley david.rutley.mp@parliament.uk
Maidenhead Theresa May mayt@parliament.uk
Maidstone and The Weald Helen Grant helen.grant.mp@parliament.uk
Maldon John Whittingdale john.whittingdale.mp@parliament.uk
Mansfield Ben Bradley ben.bradley.mp@parliament.uk
Meon Valley Flick Drummond flick.drummond.mp@parliament.uk
Meriden Saqib Bhatti saqib.bhatti@parliament.uk
Mid Bedfordshire Nadine Dorries dorriesn@parliament.uk
Mid Derbyshire Pauline Latham pauline.latham.mp@parliament.uk
Mid Dorset and North Poole Michael Tomlinson michael.tomlinson.mp@parliament.uk
Mid Norfolk George Freeman george.freeman.mp@parliament.uk
Mid Sussex Mims Davies mims.davies.mp@parliament.uk
Mid Worcestershire Nigel Huddleston nigel.huddleston.mp@parliament.uk
Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland Simon Clarke simon.clarke.mp@parliament.uk
Milton Keynes North Ben Everitt ben.everitt.mp@parliament.uk
Milton Keynes South Iain Stewart iain.stewart.mp@parliament.uk
Mole Valley Sir Paul Beresford annie.winsbury@parliament.uk
Monmouth David TC Davies david.davies.mp@parliament.uk
Montgomeryshire Craig Williams craig.williams.mp@parliament.uk
Moray Douglas Ross douglas.ross.mp@parliament.uk
Morecambe and Lunesdale David Morris david.morris.mp@parliament.uk
Morley and Outwood Andrea Jenkyns andrea.jenkyns.mp@parliament.uk
New Forest West Sir Desmond Swayne swayned@parliament.uk
Newark Robert Jenrick robert.jenrick.mp@parliament.uk
Newbury Laura Farris laura.farris.mp@parliament.uk
Newcastle-under-Lyme Aaron Bell aaron.bell.mp@parliament.uk
Newton Abbot Anne Marie Morris annemarie.morris.mp@parliament.uk
North Cornwall Scott Mann scott.mann.mp@parliament.uk
North Devon Selaine Saxby selaine.saxby.mp@parliament.uk
North Dorset Simon Hoare simon.hoare.mp@parliament.uk
North East Bedfordshire Richard Fuller richard.fuller.mp@parliament.uk
North East Cambridgeshire Steve Barclay stephen.barclay.mp@parliament.uk
North East Derbyshire Lee Rowley lee.rowley.mp@parliament.uk
North East Hampshire Ranil Jayawardena email@ranil.uk
North East Hertfordshire Sir Oliver Heald Oliver.heald.mp@parliament.uk
North East Somerset Jacob Rees-Mogg jacob.reesmogg.mp@parliament.uk
North Herefordshire Bill Wiggin bill.wiggin.mp@parliament.uk
North Norfolk Duncan Baker duncan@duncanbaker.org.uk
North Shropshire Owen Paterson Patersono@parliament.uk
North Somerset Dr Liam Fox ione.douglas@parliament.uk
North Swindon Justin Tomlinson justin.tomlinson.mp@parliament.uk
North Thanet Sir Roger Gale galerj@parliament.uk
North Warwickshire Craig Tracey craig.tracey.mp@parliament.uk
North West Cambridgeshire Shailesh Vara shailesh.vara.mp@parliament.uk
North West Durham Richard Holden richard.holden.mp@parliament.uk
North West Hampshire Kit Malthouse kit.malthouse.mp@parliament.uk
North West Leicestershire Andrew Bridgen andrew.bridgen.mp@parliament.uk
North West Norfolk James Wild james.wild.mp@parliament.uk
North Wiltshire James Gray jamesgraymp@parliament.uk
Northampton North Michael Ellis michael.ellis.mp@parliament.uk
Northampton South Andrew Lewer andrew.lewer.mp@parliament.uk
Norwich North Chloe Smith chloe@chloesmith.org.uk
Nuneaton Marcus Jones marcus.jones.mp@parliament.uk
Old Bexley and Sidcup James Brokenshire james.brokenshire.mp@parliament.uk
Orpington Gareth Bacon gareth.bacon.mp@parliament.uk
Pendle Andrew Stephenson andrew.stephenson.mp@parliament.uk
Penistone and Stocksbridge Miriam Cates miriam.cates.mp@parliament.uk
Penrith and The Border Dr Neil Hudson neil.hudson.mp@parliament.uk
Peterborough Paul Bristow paul.bristow.mp@parliament.uk
Plymouth, Moor View Johnny Mercer diary@johnnyforplymouth.co.uk
Poole Sir Robert Syms symsmp.office@parliament.uk
Portsmouth North Penny Mordaunt penny.mordaunt.mp@parliament.uk
Preseli Pembrokeshire Stephen Crabb stephen.crabb.mp@parliament.uk
Pudsey Stuart Andrew stuart.andrew.mp@parliament.uk
Rayleigh and Wickford Mark Francois mark.francois.mp@parliament.uk
Reading West Alok Sharma alok.sharma.mp@parliament.uk
Redcar Jacob Young jacob.young.mp@parliament.uk
Redditch Rachel Maclean rachel.maclean.mp@parliament.uk
Reigate Crispin Blunt crispinbluntmp@parliament.uk
Richmond (Yorks) Rishi Sunak rishi.sunak.mp@parliament.uk
Rochester and Strood Kelly Tolhurst kelly.tolhurst.mp@parliament.uk
Rochford and Southend East James Duddridge james@jamesduddridge.com
Romford Andrew Rosindell andrew.rosindell.mp@parliament.uk
Romsey and Southampton North Caroline Nokes caroline.nokes.mp@parliament.uk
Rossendale and Darwen Jake Berry jake.berry.mp@parliament.uk
Rother Valley Alexander Stafford alexander.stafford.mp@parliament.uk
Rugby Mark Pawsey mark.pawsey.mp@parliament.uk
Ruislip, Northwood and Pinner David Simmonds david.simmonds.mp@parliament.uk
Runnymede and Weybridge Dr Ben Spencer ben.spencer.mp@parliament.uk
Rushcliffe Ruth Edwards ruth.edwards.mp@parliament.uk
Rutland and Melton Alicia Kearns alicia.kearns.mp@parliament.uk
Saffron Walden Kemi Badenoch kemi.badenoch.mp@parliament.uk
Salisbury John Glen john.glen.mp@parliament.uk
Scarborough and Whitby Robert Goodwill robert.goodwill.mp@parliament.uk
Scunthorpe Holly Mumby-Croft holly.mumbycroft.mp@parliament.uk
Sedgefield Paul Howell paul.howell.mp@parliament.uk
Selby and Ainsty Nigel Adams nigel.adams.mp@parliament.uk
Sevenoaks Laura Trott laura.trott.mp@parliament.uk
Sherwood Mark Spencer mark.spencer.mp@parliament.uk
Shipley Philip Davies daviesp@parliament.uk
Shrewsbury and Atcham Daniel Kawczynski daniel.kawczynski.mp@parliament.uk
Sittingbourne and Sheppey Gordon Henderson gordon.henderson.mp@parliament.uk
Skipton and Ripon Julian Smith julian.smith.mp@parliament.uk
Sleaford and North Hykeham Dr Caroline Johnson caroline.johnson.mp@parliament.uk
Solihull Julian Knight julian.knight.mp@parliament.uk
Somerton and Frome David Warburton david.warburton.mp@parliament.uk
South Basildon and East Thurrock Stephen Metcalfe stephen.metcalfe.mp@parliament.uk
South Cambridgeshire Anthony Browne anthony.browne.mp@parliament.uk
South Derbyshire Heather Wheeler heather.wheeler.mp@parliament.uk
South Dorset Richard Drax richard.drax.mp@parliament.uk
South East Cambridgeshire Lucy Frazer lucy.frazer.mp@parliament.uk
South East Cornwall Sheryll Murray sheryll.murray.mp@parliament.uk
South Holland and The Deepings Sir John Hayes hayesj@parliament.uk
South Leicestershire Alberto Costa alberto.costa.mp@parliament.uk
South Norfolk Richard Bacon richardbaconmp@parliament.uk
South Northamptonshire Andrea Leadsom andrea.leadsom.mp@parliament.uk
South Ribble Katherine Fletcher katherine.fletcher.mp@parliament.uk
South Staffordshire Gavin Williamson gavin.williamson.mp@parliament.uk
South Suffolk James Cartlidge james.cartlidge.mp@parliament.uk
South Swindon Robert Buckland robert.buckland.mp@parliament.uk
South Thanet Craig Mackinlay craig.mackinlay.mp@parliament.uk
South West Bedfordshire Andrew Selous andrew.selous.mp@parliament.uk
South West Devon Sir Gary Streeter deans@parliament.uk
South West Hertfordshire Gagan Mohindra gagan.mohindra.mp@parliament.uk
South West Norfolk Elizabeth Truss elizabeth.truss.mp@parliament.uk
South West Surrey Jeremy Hunt huntj@parliament.uk
South West Wiltshire Dr Andrew Murrison murrisona@parliament.uk
Southampton, Itchen Royston Smith royston.smith.mp@parliament.uk
Southend West Sir David Amess amessd@parliament.uk
Southport Damien Moore damien.moore.mp@parliament.uk
Spelthorne Kwasi Kwarteng kwasi.kwarteng.mp@parliament.uk
St Austell and Newquay Steve Double steve.double.mp@parliament.uk
St Ives Derek Thomas derek.thomas.mp@parliament.uk
Stafford Theo Clarke theo.clarke.mp@parliament.uk
Staffordshire Moorlands Karen Bradley karen.bradley.mp@parliament.uk
Stevenage Stephen McPartland stephen@stephenmcpartland.co.uk
Stockton South Matt Vickers matt.vickers.mp@parliament.uk
Stoke-on-Trent Central Jo Gideon jo.gideon.mp@parliament.uk
Stoke-on-Trent North Jonathan Gullis jonathan.gullis.mp@parliament.uk
Stoke-on-Trent South Jack Brereton jack.brereton.mp@parliament.uk
Stone Sir William Cash cashw@parliament.uk
Stourbridge Suzanne Webb suzanne.webb.mp@parliament.uk
Stratford-on-Avon Nadhim Zahawi nadhim.zahawi.mp@parliament.uk
Stroud Siobhan Bailie siobhan.baillie.mp@parliament.uk
Suffolk Coastal Dr Therese Coffey therese.coffey.mp@parliament.uk
Surrey Heath Michael Gove michael.gove.mp@parliament.uk
Sutton and Cheam Paul Scully paul.scully.mp@parliament.uk
Sutton Coldfield Andrew Mitchell andrew.mitchell.mp@parliament.uk
Tamworth Christopher Pincher christopher.pincher.mp@parliament.uk
Tatton Esther McVey esther.mcvey.mp@parliament.uk
Taunton Deane Rebecca Pow rebecca.pow.mp@parliament.uk
Telford Lucy Allan lucy.allan.mp@parliament.uk
Tewkesbury Laurence Robertson robertsonl@parliament.uk
The Cotswolds Sir Geoffrey Clifton-Brown cliftonbrowng@parliament.uk
The Wrekin Mark Pritchard pritchardm@parliament.uk
Thirsk and Malton Kevin Hollinrake kevin.hollinrake.mp@parliament.uk
Thornbury and Yate Luke Hall luke.hall.mp@parliament.uk
Thurrock Jackie Doyle-Price jackie.doyleprice.mp@parliament.uk
Tiverton and Honiton Neil Parish neil.parish.mp@parliament.uk
Tonbridge and Malling Tom Tugendhat tom.tugendhat.mp@parliament.uk
Torbay Kevin Foster kevin.foster.mp@parliament.uk
Torridge and West Devon Geoffrey Cox coxg@parliament.uk
Totnes Anthony Mangnall anthony.mangnall.mp@parliament.uk
Truro and Falmouth Cherilyn Mackrory cherilyn.mackrory.mp@parliament.uk
Tunbridge Wells Greg Clark gregclarkmp@parliament.uk
Uxbridge and South Ruislip Boris Johnson boris.johnson.mp@parliament.uk
Vale of Clwyd Dr James Davies james.davies.mp@parliament.uk
Vale of Glamorgan Alun Cairns alun.cairns.mp@parliament.uk
Wakefield Imran Ahmad Khan imran.mp@parliament.uk
Walsall North Eddie Hughes eddie.hughes.mp@parliament.uk
Wantage David Johnston david.johnston.mp@parliament.uk
Warrington South Andy Carter andy.carter.mp@parliament.uk
Watford Dean Russell dean.russell.mp@parliament.uk
Waveney Peter Aldous peter.aldous.mp@parliament.uk
Wealden Nusrat Ghani nusrat.ghani.mp@parliament.uk
Wellingborough Peter Bone bonep@parliament.uk
Wells James Heappey james.heappey.mp@parliament.uk
Welwyn Hatfield Grant Shapps shappsg@parliament.uk
West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine Andrew Bowie andrew.bowie.mp@parliament.uk
West Bromwich East Nicola Richards nicola.richards.mp@parliament.uk
West Bromwich West Shaun Bailey shaun.bailey.mp@parliament.uk
West Dorset Chris Loder chris.loder.mp@parliament.uk
West Suffolk Matt Hancock matt.hancock.mp@parliament.uk
West Worcestershire Harriet Baldwin harriett.baldwin.mp@parliament.uk
Weston-super-Mare John Penrose beauperec@parliament.uk
Wimbledon Stephen Hammond stephen.hammond.mp@parliament.uk
Winchester Steve Brine steve.brine.mp@parliament.uk
Windsor Adam Afriyie adam.afriyie.mp@parliament.uk
Witham Priti Patel withammp@parliament.uk
Witney Robert Courts robert.courts.mp@parliament.uk
Woking Jonathan Lord jonathan.lord.mp@parliament.uk
Wokingham John Redwood john.redwood.mp@parliament.uk
Wolverhampton North East Jane Stevenson jane.stevenson.mp@parliament.uk
Wolverhampton South West Stuart Anderson stuart.anderson.mp@parliament.uk
Worcester Robin Walker robin.walker.mp@parliament.uk
Workington Mark Jenkinson mark.jenkinson.mp@parliament.uk
Worthing West Peter Bottomley bottomleyp@parliament.uk
Wrexham Sarah Atherton sarah.atherton.mp@parliament.uk
Wycombe Steve Baker steve.baker.mp@parliament.uk
Wyre and Preston North Ben Wallace wallaceb@parliament.uk
Wyre Forest Mark Garnier mark.garnier.mp@parliament.uk
Yeovil Marcus Fysh marcus.fysh.mp@parliament.uk
Ynys Môn Virginia Crosbie virginia.crosbie.mp@parliament.uk
York Outer Julian Sturdy julian.sturdy.mp@parliament.uk

Back our farmers Boris: Ex-Environment Secretary THERESA VILLIERS says the world WILL buy British if the PM makes good on his manifesto pledge

Of all the pledges that led to Boris Johnson’s landslide election victory last year, ‘Get Brexit Done’ is surely the most famous. But every Conservative MP elected then stood on another important promise.

We vowed that as we regained our independent, free-trading status, we would maintain the UK’s reputation for world-class food and animal welfare standards

The manifesto said: ‘In all of our trade negotiations, we will not compromise on our high environmental protection, animal welfare and food standards.’

That means we should not allow food not produced to our high quality levels – such as hormone-fed beef or chlorinated chicken – into the UK as the price for securing lucrative trade deals.

I would like us to make good on that manifesto pledge in the following way.

Ex-environment secretary Theresa Villiers says the world will buy British if the PM makes good on his manifesto pledge

Ex-environment secretary Theresa Villiers says the world will buy British if the PM makes good on his manifesto pledge

Firstly, we should establish a powerful, independent body of food, farming, welfare and environmental experts to advise Ministers on each and every trade deal.

And secondly, we must ensure that Parliament has the final say on overseeing those deals.

The International Trade Secretary insists that the Government, by establishing a new temporary Trade and Agriculture Commission, has already done enough.

While this new advisory commission is welcome, it is not sufficient. We cannot have a food and trade deal watchdog that, on current plans, expires in less than six months’ time and before most future trade deals are finalised.

It needs to be set up on a statutory, permanent basis, report to Parliament and have a wider, fully representative panel of members. Parliament must have a vital role in devising future trade deals – with a vote setting out general principles for draft trade deal negotiations and a simple ‘Yes/No’ vote when they are concluded. That would fulfil the key Brexit message of ‘take back control’ and mirror how the US Congress oversees trade deals in Washington.

Of course, it is the Government that negotiates trade agreements but it should be in partnership with MPs.

I appeal to Ministers to accept these proposals and heed The Mail on Sunday’s own Save Our Family Farms campaign.

I would also urge them to listen to top chefs such as Jamie Oliver and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, who have joined up with charities and celebrities to lobby against sub-standard food being allowed into our country through an open letter to the Prime Minister, published in this newspaper today, left.

MPs will next month have another chance to take a stand when we vote on the final stages of the Agriculture Bill and when we can back sensible amendments passed in the House of Lords.

But it would be far better if the Government and backbenchers came together now to back a sensible compromise – a tougher version of the Commission already set up combined with a stronger role for Parliament.

That would confirm the Prime Minister’s steadfast commitment to high standards of food and animal welfare.

It would also help secure the goal set out so clearly in our manifesto that ‘we want people, both at home and abroad, to be lining up to buy British’.

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Councils pay care homes DOUBLE the local weekly fee to take Covid hospital patients

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councils pay care homes double the local weekly fee to take covid hospital patients

Care home chiefs fear deadly mistakes made at the peak of the coronavirus pandemic risk being repeated as councils offer them extra cash to take Covid-positive hospital patients.

More than 15,000 people died of the virus in care homes earlier this year, according to official figures, after it was reported that many elderly residential facilities were flooded with Covid-19 patients returning from hospital.

Now, despite a Government pledge to place a ‘protective ring’ around vulnerable residents, care homes in Cumbria are being offered £1,500 – double the local weekly fee – to take Covid-positive patients from hospital.

Birmingham city council has been offering £1,000 incentives for months while Morecambe Bay clinical commissioning group wrote to care homes offering them extra cash only last month.

Trafford council in Greater Manchester has also warned care homes to ready themselves for a fresh wave of hospital discharges, telling them to expect Covid-positive patients within just two hours of their discharge from hospital.

TEST RESULT WARNING: Nadra Ahmed, of the National Care Association said: ¿In the Government¿s winter plan they talked about making discharges safe. We have had reports from providers who¿ve taken people from hospital with negative test results and they¿ve tested them on arrival and their tests come back positive.¿

TEST RESULT WARNING: Nadra Ahmed, of the National Care Association said: ‘In the Government’s winter plan they talked about making discharges safe. We have had reports from providers who’ve taken people from hospital with negative test results and they’ve tested them on arrival and their tests come back positive.’

Eileen Chubb, from the whistleblowing charity Compassion in Care, said: ‘It’s the same attitude to elderly people all over again – rushing them into care homes. They’re sacrificing people needlessly.’

Roger Waluube, manager of Pelham House care home in Folkestone, Kent, said: ‘It is completely unacceptable to transfer people from the hospital into the community when you think they could pose a risk to others.’

In April, hospitals were told to stop sending untested patients to care homes following a spate of outbreaks, and Health Secretary Matt Hancock pledged to strengthen ‘the protective ring’ around them. Government guidance now states that no care home should be forced to admit a resident if it is unable to cope with Covid-19.

But care homes in Cumbria were sent a letter last month from the local council and NHS trust asking them to take Covid-positive hospital patients. The £1,500 payments cover the cost of additional care and are only open to homes that have been Covid-free for 28 days. Local authorities pay £550-600 per week on average, the National Care Association says.

Judy Downey, of the Relatives and Residents Association, said the incentive was ‘perverse’, adding: ‘What are we saying about older people in care homes? That they are collateral damage? It’s not humane.’

Highlighting another issue, Nadra Ahmed, of the National Care Association, said: ‘In the Government’s winter plan they talked about making discharges safe. We have had reports from providers who’ve taken people from hospital with negative test results and they’ve tested them on arrival and their tests come back positive.’

Professor Adam Gordon, of the British Geriatrics Society, who led a Covid ‘red-zone’ ward in hospital during the first wave, said: ‘It’s clear from Government advice that they recognise the mistakes from last time – too much movement of staff between care homes and too much movement between hospitals and care homes.

‘What’s not clear from their winter plan is whether we have sufficient mechanisms to prevent those mistakes being repeated. In Scotland they do not send Covid-positive people into care homes. In England that is still a possibility and the reliance is on the care home to get it right.’

Roger Waluube, manager of Pelham House care home in Folkestone, Kent (pictured) said: ¿It is completely unacceptable to transfer people from the hospital into the community when you think they could pose a risk to others¿

Roger Waluube, manager of Pelham House care home in Folkestone, Kent (pictured) said: ‘It is completely unacceptable to transfer people from the hospital into the community when you think they could pose a risk to others’ 

Tony Carling, a care home operator in Cumbria, has decided not to take Covid-positive patients, but fears it could be a costly move. He said: ‘The majority of our clients are funded by local authorities, so it’s very difficult to turn down. You are under extreme financial pressure as to whether you get further business from that authority if you don’t support their needs.’

Mike Padgham, of the Independent Care Group, said: ‘If you’ve got lots of empty beds, it’s not long before your business no longer becomes viable. Homes operate at about 90 per cent occupancy. The challenge with the pandemic is that you’ve got a stark choice between putting your business at risk or accepting new people with a risk.’

A Department of Health and Social Care spokesperson said: ‘We have ring-fenced £1.1billion to support care providers to prevent infections, and are making £3.7billion available to councils. 

We have provided 200million items of PPE and are enabling care providers to meet all their Covid-19 PPE needs free of charge. Last week we announced over £500 million extra funding to restrict movement of staff between homes to stop the spread of the virus.’ 

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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