Wednesday, 25 February 2009

Ivan Cameron - Rest In Peace

It is with great sadness that I learnt of the death of Ivan Cameron, eldest son of the Conservative Party Leader David Cameron.

Any loss of life is tragic, but to lose a child is a loss that no parent should have to bear.

My thoughts are with David, Samantha, Arthur and Nancy at this difficult time.

Monday, 23 February 2009


David Williams has challenged Edward Timpson MP to name which Sure Start Children's Centre he would close.

Labour's Parliamentary Candidate, David Williams, today warned that Conservative Party plans to cut £200 million each year from the Sure Start budget, could see a Crewe and Nantwich Children’s Centre forced to close its doors.

There are currently five Children’s Centres in Crewe and Nantwich. But the £200 million cut proposed by David Cameron’s Conservatives means cutting almost 20 per cent of the Sure Start budget – the equivalent of closing one in five Children’s Centres.

David Williams said:

“Parents in Crewe & Nantwich regularly tell me how much they value their local Sure Start Children’s Centre and the real help they offer with childcare, healthcare and other services for their children.

“Ten years ago there were no Children’s Centres in our area, but now there are five across Crewe and Nantwich. But if the Tories get their way and slash the Sure Start budget by £200 million one of these Children’s Centres would have to close, just at the time when families in our area need them most.

"I can only assume Mr Cameron has asked Mr Timpson which Children's Centre should close to fund the Tories' policy. It is only fair that Crewe and Nantwich parents are told as well.

“The Labour Government will keep investing in Sure Start because the early years of a child’s life are so important. We don’t want to put that at risk by letting the Conservatives cut Sure Start."

In Conservative's ‘Helping new families’ policy document published on 15 March 2008, the Conservatives committed to cutting “£200 million per year…from Children’s Centres” to spend elsewhere. This would mean cutting 19.5% from Sure Start budgets – the equivalent of one in five Children’s Centres being forced to close.

On top of this the Conservative Party is committed to restricting the Department for Children, Schools and Families budget to a 1% real terms increase from April this year - representing a £300 million cut. As yet, they have not come clean about where these cuts would fall, but this could represent further cuts to Sure Start.

There are five Sure Start Children's Centres in Crewe and Nantwich: Monks Coppenhall; Underwood West; Pebble Brook; Nantwich, and Crewe Rural.

Please click here for more information on Sure Start.

Saturday, 21 February 2009

Mobile Surgery: Davenport Avenue (Crewe)

I did my mobile surgery on Davenport Avenue in Crewe this morning (I haven't done the Nantwich Davenport Avenue yet). I was joined on the knocker by Peter Kent, Pam Minshall, Steve Hogben and Jules Hornbrook who was ably assisted by young master Crewe Blog!

Jules (Crewe Blog) very kindly supplied the above picture of the Labour team talking to the Jeff Smith and another David Williams, who are Chair and Secretary of Gresty Community Group respectively.

They both told me that neighbourhood policing is working well and they have a good working relationship with local officers. I am pleased to hear this because you see so much criticism of PCSOs and police officers in the media. They get a bad press that isn't deserved.

The issue of starlings was also raised with me by residents. The birds that used to entertain us at the Alex have now been moved from Waverly Court and they've decided to roost in the conifers next to Mornflake Oats. The consequent bird droppings means that those living on the south side of Davenport Avenue are constantly washing cars and hosing down driveways.

I spoke to my mate who runs a wildlife hospital and has great expertise in these matters. He says that the residents have about another month of this before the starlings start pairing up and making chicks. They will start roosting again in October, but may not return to the same site. So the Davenport Avenue people might get away with it in the Autumn?

Please click here to visit the Gresty Community Group website.

Friday, 20 February 2009

Stand up for hope, not hate

On March 14th the BNP is planning to hold their first ever mass rally in a UK city. But the anti-fascist group Searchlight is going to stop them. They've launched a petition which demands that Merseyside Police turns down the BNP's application and stands up to racism.

A delegation of Liverpool's community champions will hand in the petition directly to the Police on February 27th. Help Searchlight build the pressure - sign the petition and then get your friends to do the same.

Please click here to sign the petition.

Wednesday, 18 February 2009

David Williams welcomes crackdown on debt scams

David Williams, Labour's Parliamentary Candidate for Crewe and Nantwich has welcomed action by the Labour Government to clamp down on businesses which are exploiting people in financial difficulty by making misleading claims about arranging for debts to be written off.

Labour’s Ministry of Justice has produced new guidance aimed at firms who deal in debt advice and counselling. They have been warned that if their adverts make dubious claims or leave out important information which might breach consumer protection regulations, they could face enforcement action that might ultimately result in authorisations being removed.

Supporting this action, David Williams said:

“Vulnerable people in Crewe and Nantwich facing debt problems need help and support. I am pleased that Labour is cracking down on businesses who falsely claim they can write off debt. The new guidance which the Government is producing will protect innocent customers from being misled by irresponsible firms.”

“We urge anyone in who is considering using a business offering debt help to think carefully before entering an arrangement and seek independent advice before making any final decisions. Our new guidance is also an important reminder to local businesses about the need to comply with rules on advertising and marketing and provide an effective service to their customers.”


Authorised businesses have to follow strict rules which govern the way they conduct their activities, including advertising and selling:

- They must not ‘cold call’ in person or engage in any form of high pressure selling;

- They must give written information on how to pursue a claim and the costs involved before a contract is agreed;

- They must allow a ‘cooling off’ period of at least 14 days after signing a contract in case the consumer changes their mind;

- They must operate a customer complaints scheme that meets relevant criteria.


The Governemt has recently become aware of a problem whereby certain companies specialising in debt advice and counselling have been making misleading advertising statements. These statements include:

Scale of unenforceability market “80% of credit agreements are unenforceable”; “50 million credit agreements are created every year, at least 25 million are unenforceable”.

Volume of cases handled “We are currently handling over 5,000 cases!”; “We are currently managing £30m of claims!”

Timescales “We’ll get your credit cards written off within 6 weeks!”; “Fast results guaranteed!”

Success rates “We have a 100% success rate”; “A positive outcome is guaranteed”

Potential outcomes “We can write off all your outstanding debt, all previous payments could be returned, and you could keep any goods purchased.”

Affect on consumer's credit rating “Making a claim will not affect your credit rating or your ability to get credit in future”

Unqualified use of “No win, no fee”-type statements “It is FREE to claim”; “It costs nothing to claim – what do you have to lose?”

Testimonials “Fantastic service!”; “Wow, what a brilliant service, thank you very much!!”

Please click here to vitist the Citizens' Advice Bureau debt advice website

Letter to the Chronicle

Dear Sir

If they ever relocate the TV show Shameless to Crewe, I'm sure Edward Timpson MP will be cast in a leading role.

I could not believe his desperate attempt to claim some credit for the station staying put, when he hadn't done a tap to campaign for that outcome.

The only position Mr Timpson took on Crewe railway station was to sit on the fence. He did not recognise the economic impact of moving the station to Basford and he did not stand up for Crewe and Nantwich.

CREAM were farsighted enough to see the devastating consequences for the Town of losing its railway station. I congratulate CREAM on their success and I was more than happy to give them my wholehearted support and help with the campaigning work. I was delighted that the Secretary of State for Transport accepted my invitation to meet with CREAM, giving them the opportunity to make their case directly.

The challenge now is not to settle for the £1 million sticking plaster on offer and campaign for a full redevelopment of the station on its existing site and make it a facility we are proud of. I hope that Mr Timpson will not be behind the curve this time and he will join me in this important campaign.

But most importantly, Mr Timpson, stop taking the credit for other people's work and start telling the people of Crewe and Nantwich exactly what you and the Conservative Party stand for. Tell us about how your Party would stand back and do nothing to help people through the global recession. Tell us about your Party's cuts in spending on police, children's services, apprenticeships and many other important services the people of Crewe and Nantwich rely on.

And don't bother deploying your cronies to abuse me in anonymous letters. Come into the open and debate with me in your own name.

Yours faithfully

David Williams
Labour's Parliamentary Candidate
For Crewe and Nantwich

Monday, 16 February 2009

David Williams calls for lessons to be learnt from M6 crash

Portugese lorry driver, Paulo Jorge Nogueira da Silva, was today found guilty of death by careless driving, which resulted in the tragic death of Michelle and David Statham and their four children.

David Williams, Labour's Parliamentary Candidate for Crewe and Nantwich, said:

"I can understand why the relatives and friends of the Statham family feel like justice has not been served.

"Lessons must be learnt, the main lesson being one we can all learn. How many times do we see drivers not giving the road their full attention: talking on mobile phones, texting and other distractions.

"In future drivers should spare a moment to think about the Statham family before they take their mind off the road in front.

"I have contacted the Secretary of State for Transport and asked him to look at a Government awareness campaign about careless driving."

Think Road Safety

Sunday, 15 February 2009

Mobile Surgeries: Nantwich and Maw Green

I've just come in from today's mobile surgeries. We were caught out by the rain in Nantwich this morning, but still received a good reception from constituents.

I had a nice surprise this afternoon when I met up with one of my old instructors from when I was an apprentice in Rolls-Royce's Trim Shop.

We had a long discussion about the situation at Bentley's and how things in the factory had changed since the days we had worked together over 20 years ago.

One of the big differences is the owners. We both agreed that had Vickers still been in charge there would have been many more redundancies by now. The current owners seem to be much more committed to the workforce.

Despite that, it is very worrying times for all there and we need a global recovery to help promote sales. Bentley shows how much we are so reliant on a strong global economy. The age old adage has never been so true; when America sneezes the world catches a cold.

Thank goodness we have a strong Prime Minister who is leading the world in providing solutions to the global recession. What we do know is that the Tory ‘do nothing’ approach that would just make matters much worse.

Saturday, 14 February 2009

Mobile Surgeries: Wistaston Green and Queens Park

I was out talking to constituents in Wistaston Green and Queens Park today. Lots of issues were raised on the doorstep, but crime is a recurrent theme. I am particularly concerned that people are being misled by the Tories, so I thought I would tell it like it really is.

Labour's commitment to fighting crime – and the progress we are making – is in stark contrast with the Conservatives, who have no credibility on law and order.

They have continually tried to block Labour's investment in law and order and the tough measures we have taken against crime, including voting against tougher sentences for serious, violent and persistent offenders, and they repeatedly dismiss our anti-social behaviour measures as gimmicks. The Tories talk tough but vote soft.

Britain is safer with Labour. Crime is down 32 per cent since 1997 - the chance of being a victim of crime is at its lowest for 27 years - and we have provided over 14,000 more police and 16,000 Police Community Support Officers, giving every community in England and Wales its own Neighbourhood Police Team.

And we will go further: our ambition is to reduce violent crime, theft and burglary so that the average chance of being a victim of crime will be the lowest in nearly 30 years. We will provide 7,000 more prison places by 2010 through the largest ever prison-building programme.

The Tories will cut the Home Office budget, which will mean fewer police officers on the beat.

Friday, 13 February 2009


It is now clear that David Cameron's strategy is to talk down Britain and present the current financial crisis as unique to Britain. That is a Tory lie.

Today the major European economies published their latest figures and it is now clear that countries, such as Germany, are feeling the effects of the global recession more severely than Britain.

Despite what the Tories say, when it comes to debt we are the second-best placed in the G7. That is why we have been able to give the economy a shot in the arm with tax cuts for hard working families and extra support for small businesses.

What is also clear is that the answer to our problems is not to retreat into isolation, as the Tories would do, but to work together across borders to tackle the challenges we face. That is why the Prime Minister will use the G20 to seek greater co-ordination between countries as we plan for recovery.

The plan for recovery

1. We recapitalised the banks to save savers.

2. We gave the economy a shot in the arm with increased and focussed spending delivered by a fiscal and monetary stimulus. Making sure that we at all times invest in the future.

3. To get lending going to the people and businesses who need it with our loan guarantee schemes.

4. We are now beginning the fourth stage of the plan to rebalance our economy and increase our exports to the world through key sectors of our economy: low carbon technology; high value added manufacturing; and the digital and creative industries.

This national plan for recovery and jobs will not work overnight but it will make the difference in ensuring that we come through this recession stronger and sooner.

International perspective on the global financial crisis

Today’s figures confirm the recession is being felt more severely in Germany and Italy:
• Germany: GDP contracted 2.1% in Q4 2008, compared with the previous quarter.
• Italy: contracted 1.8%
• UK: contracted 1.5%
• France: contracted 1.2%
• US: contracted 1.0%
(Source: Eurostat, 13/02/09)

The UK has the second lowest national debt in the G7:
IMF Net Debt(% GDP)2009
Canada 20.4
UK 38.5
France 57.8
Germany 56.8
Italy 102.5
Japan 97.6
USA 50.7
Euro 57.1
(Source: IMF World Economic Outlook – October 2008)

So next time you see David Cameron, ask him why he thinks doing nothing is the right approach?

Thursday, 12 February 2009

David Williams concerned for the future of Crewe Works

David Williams, Labour's Parliamentary Candidate for Crewe and Nantwich, has responded to news that the preferred bidder for the new £7.5 billion contract to build super express trains is not Bombardier.

David Williams said: "It is very welcome that the Government is continuing to invest in our railways, despite the current economic difficulties. However I am very concerned that Bombardier has not landed the contract for the largest UK investment in new rolling stock. This creates or safeguards 12,000 jobs in UK manufacturing, which is very good news for our economy, but my concern is for jobs in Crewe and Nantwich.

"Crewe has a proud railway history, but I want the Town to have a railway future.

"I have been in touch with the Unite Works Convenor to express my full support and I am contacting the Secretary of State for Transport. I was delighted to welcome Geoff Hoon to Crewe a few weeks ago and I made the point then that Crewe and Nantwich has many highly skilled and experienced railway engineers who have a lot to offer the industry. We must not allow those skills to go to waste. I will be reminding the Minister of that conversation and calling on him to act.

"When I helped Gwyneth with her campaign to try to stop the Tories from privatising BREL, our worse fear was that this would be the beginning of the end for Crewe Works. More than twenty years later a much smaller Crewe Works is still there and I expect a Labour Government to safeguard those jobs and give the business the opportunity to expand and grow."