London

Only LibDems will stand up for residents over Heathrow

Reacting to the Davies Commission’s interim report on airport capacity in London and the South East, Liberal Democrat MEP for London Sarah Ludford said:
 
“Along with solid Liberal Democrat opinion, I have long opposed the expansion of Heathrow airport because of serious environmental concerns.”
 
“I will therefore continue to fight any proposal to expand Heathrow that would increase noise and air pollution for local residents.”
 
“The Davies Commission must look again at how the ample spare aviation capacity in London and the South East could be used more effectively, instead of heaping more misery on residents in West and South West London.”
 

Employment up, jobless down in London

The number of people out of work in London has dropped, according to the latest figures released by the Office of National Statistics (ONS).

 

The number of people in work across London went up by 30,000 between June and August 2013, while in the past year the number of people claiming Jobseeker's Allowance has fallen by almost 215,000 in the UK including 30,118 in London.

 

Liberal Democrat MEP for London Sarah Ludford said:

 

“The rise in the number of people in work across London and the decline in the number of jobless in London shows that our economy is growing stronger.”

 

“This is clearly a significant step forward, but we must remain focused on creating even more jobs.”

London universities and SMEs to benefit from research funding

Liberal Democrat MEP for London Sarah Ludford has welcomed the news of a deal on the EU's £60 billion research programme that will bring huge benefits to businesses and universities across the UK.

 

The new programme, Horizon 2020, includes significant funding for industry, and a separate £2.3 billion budget line for small businesses pushed for by Liberal Democrat MEPs.

 

In the previous research funding round (FP7), £10.2 million was granted to Kings College London (KCL) for crucial research into HIV prevention, with other London universities also benefiting from research grants.

 

Sarah Ludford commented:

 

Free school meals for infants in London

From September 2014 all infant school pupils including 293,830 in London will benefit from a free hot and healthy meal at lunchtime.

 

Earlier this month Liberal Democrat Leader and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg announced that every child in infant school in England will receive a free school lunch.

 

The government will fund schools in England to provide free meals for all children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 in a measure that will save families £400 a year per child while helping to raise school standards and cut the attainment gap.

 

Ilford student winner of Eurostar competition visits Brussels

Ludford: Ilford student winner of Eurostar competition visits Brussels

 

Sarah Ludford MEP with competition winner Saba Qureshi and her proud father

 

 

GetMoreBikes gearing up for more apprentices

Liberal Democrat MEP for London Sarah Ludford visited Islington social enterprise GetMoreBikes to see their apprentice bike mechanics in action. She said: 

 

“Liberal Democrats in government have helped create more than a million private sector jobs and now we’re working to create a million more.”

 

“Apprenticeships are key to this and I’m proud that we’ve helped businesses in London create 100,000 apprenticeships since 2010, including 2,000 in Islington alone.”

 

Jobs boost for London as EU science deal struck

This week MEPs and national ministers in Brussels agreed on the new EU research and innovation programme "Horizon 2020".

 

Over the past five years, the current EU framework programme (FP7) has brought €3.73 billion in science funding to the UK, supporting cutting-edge research in areas such as stem-cell therapy, clean energy and nano-technology.

 

In the previous funding round, £10.2 million was granted to Kings College London for crucial research into anti-retroviral microbicides to tackle HIV, with other London universities also benefiting from research grants.

 

Sarah Ludford Liberal Democrat MEP for London said:

 

Boris Johnson airport case not persuasive

After a meeting in Brussels with the Mayor of London's aviation adviser Daniel Moylan who is also a Conservative Kensington councillor, at which he argued in favour of a huge new airport in the Thames Estuary - or at Stansted - which would involve the closure of Heathrow, Liberal Democrat MEP for London Sarah Ludford said:

 

“The Mayor and I can agree in opposing Heathrow expansion, although there are many Tories disgracefully supporting a Third Runway. Liberal Democrats are united in refusing to impose further noise and air pollution on the residents of West London.”
 

Lazy UKIP MEP letting down Londoners

Attendance figures for MEPs have revealed that Liberal Democrat MEPs are the hardest working in Britain, while UKIP has been shown to be the laziest party in Europe.

 

Figures from VoteWatch Europe show that UKIP’s 11 MEPs have missed a third of all votes, twice the average across Europe. The Lib Dems are the hardest working UK party in Brussels, attending 87% of votes.

 

London MEP Sarah Ludford (LibDem) has attended 93% of roll call votes. In contrast UKIP’s Gerard Batten had a poor participation rate of 66.63%, ranking a meagre 709 out of 752 MEPs. Syed Kamall’s (Conservative) attendance rate is even worse at 62% (729 out of 752).

 

Reform EU sugar policy to protect Tate & Lyle

 

Liberal Democrat MEP for London Sarah Ludford has welcomed the coalition government’s continued commitment to the reform of EU sugar policy, which is vital for the future of 850 jobs at Tate & Lyle’s cane sugar refinery in Silvertown, east London.

 

Cap on bankers’ bonuses good for City and taxpayers

 

Commenting on today’s vote in the European Parliament to introduce a major piece of financial regulation including a cap on bankers’ bonuses and new transparency requirements for banks, LibDem MEP for London Sarah Ludford said:

 

"Capping bankers' bonuses will usher in a much-needed culture change in the City, putting an end to the excessively risky behaviour that led to the financial crisis. Particularly when money from taxpayer-funded bailouts and ordinary savers is at stake, it is only fair that astronomical bonuses should be curbed and replaced by a more long-term, responsible approach."

 

European ‘Financial Transaction Tax’ will hit Londoners

 

A research report prepared for the City of London Corporation has estimated the cost of the proposed European Financial Transaction Tax (FTT) on UK government debt at £4 billion, with further costs for company debt.

Even though the UK is not taking part, bonds issued by our government and companies are traded in EU participating countries and will therefore be subject to the tax. This will raise government spending and the cost of capital and investment.

LibDem MEP for London Sarah Ludford said:

“The once-called ‘Tobin Tax’ was supposed to be the magic bullet for deterring financial speculation and raising money for good causes.”

Give London rightful power over £1 billion EU fund

 

London Liberal Democrat MEP Sarah Ludford has written to Business Secretary Vince Cable urging him to give the Greater London Authority (GLA) supervision of how European funding worth £1 billion to London should be spent.

The GLA currently has partial powers on behalf of central government, but in the letter Sarah argues that it should become a fully-fledged 'Management Authority’ with direct responsibility for managing EU Structural Funds.

Sarah Ludford said:

Sarah's speech to Parliament on the sugar industry

Sarah Ludford (ALDE ). – Mr President, Vice-President Reding is not the only person present who rarely ventures into agriculture. The 2006 reform promised to guarantee supplies, and has clearly not delivered for traditional cane refiners. The sector is shedding jobs. I would like to say to Mr Dantin that nearly 1 000 jobs are imperilled in my constituency alone, and factories face the risk of closure.

Meanwhile, beet refiners pocketed EUR 5 billion of aid in 2006 – compared to EUR 150 million for cane refiners – and use a cross subsidy to muscle into refining. They are now creaming off profits since the market is oligopolistic rather than competitive.

Let Londoners experience the Olympic Park says Liberal Democrat MEP Sarah Ludford

 

London Liberal Democrat MEP Sarah Ludford is supporting calls by Londoners to keep the Olympic Park open for an extended period after the Paralympic Games, in order to give local residents the chance to see the Olympic Park in all its splendour.

 

Sarah Ludford commented

 

“I think this is a great idea and would even support the park being open for a month.”

 

“What a great opportunity for those local residents who have helped to make these Games so spectacular and memorable to experience the magnificence of the Olympic Park. Londoners have played a huge part in making these games successful and this would be a fitting way to say thank you.”

 

fitting safety device could save London lives

Euro-MPs have backed a recommendation that all cars be fitted with a road crash alert system by 2015.

 

London Liberal Democrat MEP Sarah Ludford has welcomed the call for the European Commission to make compulsory by 2015 the fitting of the 'eCall' system, which automatically alerts emergency services to road crashes.

 

Sarah Ludford commented:

 

“Over 2,6OO people were killed or seriously injured on London roads last year, and installing this device could save many of them from death. Even if someone is unconscious, the system will let rescue workers know exactly where they are."

 

European Patent Court deal good for London

London Liberal Democrat MEP Sarah Ludford has welcomed a deal reached by EU leaders at their summit today on the location of the new European Patent Court. This will spilt the Court’s functions between Paris, Munich and London, with London becoming the centre for patents in pharmaceuticals and lifesciences.

 

It was finally decided last year after decades of debate that an EU common patent regime would be established to streamline applications and cut costs in the EU single market, with a court to deal with disputes. However, since then there has been disagreement between France, Germany and the UK regarding the court’s location.

 

Sarah Ludford commented:

 

Sarah's bulletin: 5th April

David Walter

I was very sad to hear of the death of David Walter at the age of only 64. He was very active within the party, both behind the scenes and on the frontline. His prestigious career in broadcast journalism led to him being appointed Director of Communications for the party. More recently he was chair of Kingston LibDems.

Sarah's bulletin: 2nd April

Dear friends,

We were particularly busy on consumer and citizens' rights in Brussels last week, as well as - very importantly - the interests of taxpayers. More on those stories later, first a word about the London Liberal Democrat conference last Saturday. 

London LibDems

Londoners can start to set EU agenda

London Liberal Democrat MEP Sarah Ludford has welcomed the launch of a new initiative that will give London residents a greater say in what proposals are brought to the European Commission for EU action.

The European Citizens' Initiative (ECI) comes into force on Sunday, and allows campaigners who collect at least a million signatures across a minimum of seven EU countries to bring proposals demanding a response by Brussels.

Sarah Ludford commented:

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