Recent updates

  • Article: Jan 14, 2021

    It is completely unacceptable that parents have received woefully inadequate food parcels in place of free school meals.

    The Secretary of State must urgently investigate this situation.

    The amount of food parents have received to feed their children is not anything like enough to provide an adequate, nutritious lunch every day.

  • xpm/ (Photo by corey oconnell on Unsplash)
    Article: Jan 11, 2021

    Amongst the post-Brexit stories of DPD stopping deliveries to Europe and Northern Ireland, Scottish fisherman saying delays and bureaucracy means they may have to stop sales to Europe and M&S stopping sales of Percy Pigs in Ireland our attention was caught by an exclusive article in the Independent.

    Arguably the problems described above are the bumps in the road as Mr Gove has warned us about and will be sorted as business becomes more familiar with the new rules

    The Independent story concerns the fact that bands will have to apply for permits and visas if they wish to tour in Europe adding significantly to costs and making tours much less viable. Not a big issue as such although this is an area where the UK exports much more than it imports

    Last week in a House of Lords Cabinet Office minister Lord True said: "The UK proposed measures that would have allowed musicians to travel and perform in the UK and the EU more easily, without needing work permits.

    "Specifically, we proposed including the work done by musicians, artists and entertainers, and their accompanying staff, in the list of permitted activities for short-term visitors. All very clear you would think.

    In fact, countries including the United States and Saudi Arabia enjoy a permit-free exemption for performers in their deals with the EU, which offers the arrangement as "standard". An EU spokesman said "The UK refused to agree because they said they were ending freedom of movement. It is untrue to say they asked for something more ambitious," the source said, adding "there has to be reciprocity".

    It appears the stumbling block was Priti Patel's immigration crackdown which has introduced tough restrictions on tours by EU musicians.

    From this month, they must, like non-EU artists, apply for visas - to visit for more than 30 days - as well as providing proof of savings and a sponsorship certificate from an event organiser.

    The Independent discovered the UK did ask for a similar 30-day exemption for its performers, but rejected 90 days - to fit with its own new rules.

  • Tim Farron (C&W Herald)
    Article: Jan 7, 2021

    Liberal Democrat Lords helped defeat the Government by backing a cross-party amendment to the Trade Bill ensuring that future trade agreements meet the UK's high standards of animal welfare and the environment.

    The Conservatives have consistently failed to support such a measure, risking that future trade deals could permit the import of food that fails to meet the UK's high standards. This puts significant pressure on British farmers.

  • y7a. (Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash)
    Article: Jan 5, 2021

    Well we reached the inevitable end point of another national lockdown with the usual dither and delay beforehand.

    In the morning we were told schools were re-opening as they were perfectly safe. By the evening they had become a vector of transmitting the diseases. It is inexcusable that schools were pressured to open despite guidance to the contrary from SAGE the scientific committee advising the government on 22nd December. Coming after secondary schools were told on Christmas Eve to prepare for mass testing with no time or resource to deliver the governments actions smacks of indecision and neglect. We have covered before the fact schools had their allocations of computers cut so home study was made more difficult. Surely the time over the past few weeks would have been better spent putting in place home learning capabilities accessible by all

  • Covid 19
    Article: Jan 4, 2021

    The following is the new guidanace from the Government website here

    Summary: what you can and cannot do during the national lockdown

    You must stay at home. The single most important action we can all take is to stay at home to protect the NHS and save lives.

    You should follow this guidance immediately. The law will be updated to reflect these new rules.

  • op7c (Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash)
    Article: Jan 1, 2021

    We think everyone will agree 2020 was a year to quickly forget.

    With a vaccine giving hope of some sort of normality in the Spring, 2021 promises to be a year for big decisions

    How we pay for the pandemic, how we address the growing climate emergency, what we do to make our society fairer to address some of the poverty and inequality laid bare by the pandemic, how we stop the UK splitting up as a consequence of the Brexit decisions; the list goes on.

  • Covid Tier 4 poster
    Article: Dec 30, 2020
    By Peter Dobbs

    Derbyshire Dales is in tier 4 from 00.00am on 31st December 2020. Full details here

    Click on poster to download a full size version.

  • l9s3
    Article: Dec 29, 2020

    The Liberal Democrats have declared that the Conservatives' deal is "threadbare" and "bad for jobs, business, security, and our environment" and warned it is the only 'free' trade deal in history to "put up barriers to trade".

    The Party has also said people are "desperate to move forward" and to see the country "united again" but Boris Johnson's deal makes that more difficult with potential trade disputes for decades to come.

  • Rob Archer (Peter Dobbs)
    Article: Dec 22, 2020
    By Peter Dobbs

    Open letter to Ashbourne residents;

    I write to respond to comments made about me by Town Cllrs following a recent meeting in which the issue of the Black's Head was discussed. During the meeting Cllr Ann Smith stated that she was 'disgruntled' with my contribution to the DDDC debate about the future of the head and claimed that while the other 3 Ashbourne District Cllrs had represented the people of Ashbourne in the debate she was not sure who I was representing.
    I was trying to represent the views of Ashbourne Town Council as set out in the statement that they issued to the District Council before the meeting. Their statement recognised that we needed to find a '21st century' solution to the issue of the head which they stated was 'imagery from a different time and with connotations from a very different time'. Their statement also referred to the likelihood of the head being stored separately from the gallows. In addition to this clear indication of the stance of the Town Council, it was very clear that the District Council would not consider allowing the head to go back on the gallows, the Conservative leader of the District Council (Cllr Purdy) made this very clear in the meeting when he said that he believed 'there would be a riot' if the head was returned to the gallows. The Town Council statement also requested that they should become the 'custodians' of the head while the District Council should retain responsibility for renovation work etc. Finally, they stated that they believed that the people of Ashbourne should be consulted.
    The proposal that I put forward to the District Council and that was eventually approved with the support of all 4 Ashbourne District Cllrs matched with the main points of the Town Council statement. (the head be returned to Ashbourne where it belongs, Ashbourne Town Council become custodians and decide where the head should be stored other than the gallows, public consultation to be included in this process, DDDC retain ownership and therefore cover the cost of renovation etc). I was therefore doing my best to represent the views of the people of Ashbourne as indicated by the Town Council statement. I had made Cllr Smith (and the other Ashbourne District Cllrs) aware of my intended proposal in an email sent on 25th November and asked for their input to try and produce a proposal that was formally supported by Ashbourne Town and District Cllrs but I did not receive a response so I had to proceed independently. The fact that all 3 of the other Ashbourne District Cllrs (all Conservatives) voted in favour of the proposal would appear to me to be a clear indication that there was broad support for this solution.

  • Article: Dec 21, 2020
    By Peter Dobbs

    The latest edition of the Lib Dem local newsletter is now available.

    Click on the links to download a pdf of the newsletter

    Outer pages here, inner pages here.

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The opinions expressed in these articles are those of the individual authors and do not represent the position of Derbyshire Dales Liberal Democrats.