Welcome to Scarborough and Whitby Labour Party

This website is for you and for the many members and supporters of our local Labour Party. It offers a place to find out what is going on in the Labour Party locally and nationally, as well as a forum for debating all the vital political issues of the day. There are links to national and local newspapers and campaigns, a link to the national Labour Party site as well as news of local events and election campaigns. Let us know what you think are the most important issues facing the people of Scarborough, Whitby, Filey and the Esk Valley and our local Labour councillors at SBC will do their utmost to ensure that your voice is heard.
Your comments are always welcome. However, they will be moderated to ensure that comments do not offend others.

Armed Forces Day

In just two days on the 30th June the country will be celebrating Armed Forces Day.   This important event gives us a chance to thank those who serve.   As Party members we often ask you to get involved in activity that can take up a lot of your time. For Armed Forces Day I only want to ask for three seconds of your time – that’s all it would take to say ‘thank you’ to a member of our Armed Forces.   That must be the easiest thing we have ever asked you to do.   You may have read about soldiers who had been pallbearers at a corporal’s funeral being turned away from a pub on Monday.
Armed Forces day is a day to say thank you – but it’s also a day to ensure that discrimination against the Armed Forces becomes a thing of the past
Labour is calling for cross-party talks on ending discrimination against the Armed Forces. Join our campaign here
You can campaign on defence issue with Labour Friends of the Forces. Click here to join for free   Best wishes,
Jim Murphy

REVEALED: FULL EXTENT OF CAMERON’S HEALTH LOTTERY

Crude, random rationing by health bodies goes far wider and deeper than first believed with 125 previously-free treatments  restricted or even stopped altogether in last two years.

Labour uncovers new evidence to show:

  • restrictions are linked to arbitrary caps and cost – despite  Ministers’ claims;
  • restrictions are being introduced which diverge from NICE guidelines;
  • restrictions cover a number of serious treatments affecting patients’ levels of pain, mobility and quality of life;
  • 22 treatments or services stopped altogether by at least one PCT/CCG;
  • patients in parts of England left facing charges for essential treatments such as cataracts, knee surgery and hip replacements.

Labour calls on Ministers to initiate an immediate review of rationing in the NHS and to act immediately on new evidence showing treatment restriction on cost alone.

We call for the immediate reversal of rationing decisions which leave patients in severe pain, restrict mobility, limit their ability to live independently or have a major psychological impact, pending the outcome of this review.

For all other treatments we believe the Government should initiate a public debate on whether or not they should be provided nationally by the NHS rather than allowing them to be restricted in a random fashion.

“We should not be moved”

sbro_town_hallLabour Group response to Scarborough Borough Council Town Hall Accommodation Review

THE Town Hall should stay where it is according to members of the Labour Group on Scarborough Borough Council.

In an interim statement issued yesterday, the group voiced its opposition to the controversial proposals.

Colin Challen, Deputy Leader of the Labour Group said: “We first called for a public consultation on these plans in August last year; and although it’s taken other members of the council a long time to catch up we are pleased that they finally agreed to put the matter out to public consultation.

“This is our provisional response, and it will guide our decision at the full Council meeting on July 20, unless there is a significant change in the facts.”

Labour Group Leader Eric Broadbent added: “We do not believe that moving the Council’s administration out of the Town Hall into Prospect House, a property more than 3 miles away would be in the best interests of the Borough and especially not in the best interests of the town of Scarborough”.

“We acknowledge that a small saving could be made – representing perhaps one third of one per cent of the Council’s budget, but this does not outweigh the loss of such an important function in the heart of Scarborough,” said Cllr Challen.

“Setting aside the financial aspects of the deal which relate to the Joint Venture (JV) with the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) to redevelop the Town Hall/Futurist site, we find that using the Council’s own figures, the cost of purchasing, moving and planning, a new Customer First, and 25 years maintenance of Prospect House – minus the sale income from selling the Town Hall – would amount to £4,246,880. This compares with the £5,800,000 independent assessment of staying in the Town Hall for 25 years. Hence over a 25 year period, the move appears to be £62,124 per annum cheaper,” he added.

Cllr Broadbent went on to say: “Of course, we cannot ignore the Joint Venture, which provides the opportunity for the Council to work with the HCA to secure redevelopment of the whole site.

“The Council has secured what amounts to an advance of £3 million to facilitate its early purchase of Prospect House in a complex deal into which the Council would itself inject a further £1.8 and so provide the JV with a net working capital of £1.8 million.

“It has not been explained however what the costs of redevelopment are, nor what the value of the remainder of the site beyond the Town Hall is.

“Without these details, nor any indication of whether a high quality development which includes a major tourist attraction will be built in a timely fashion, we believe that the present economic circumstances create a significant risk that no development will take place which is satisfactory for such an important site. Scarborough could be left with its own equivalent of a ‘Bradford Hole’ which would be much more serious for a town which relies on its attraction to tourists for so much of its economy. “Set against this we would see the town centre losing 300 well paid permanent jobs and the implications of that.”

Cllr Challen said: “Our concerns also extend to the democratic function of the Council. It appears to us that this role could be sidelined if the move went ahead. Whilst it is true that not many people attend Council meetings they have an easy option to do so, but for many people getting to Eastfield would require two or more bus journeys.

“The £128,000 adaptation costs earmarked in the Prospect House move for the civic function suggests that the democratic and civic functions are foreseen as having a much diminished role in the new arrangements.

“One of the strong views enunciated in the consultation process has been how remote the Council is already perceived to be. This move would not help”.

This brief report only summarises the Labour Group’s thinking.

Continuing scourge of fuel poverty

According to estimates by the Association for the Conservation of Energy (ACE), Government spending to tackle fuel poverty has been cut by 47%, with next year’s spending on improving the energy efficiency of the homes of vulnerable people set at £540m. Speaking to The Independent, Jenny Holland of ACE said: “Fuel poverty is a scourge that the government has committed to eradicate by 2016. But instead of investing to end the problem, it has opted to slash the funding to help our most vulnerable citizens…Without more funding, fuel poor households will conclude that the Government has simply abandoned them.”