Saturday, 27 February 2010


David Williams, Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate for Crewe and Nantwich, is supporting ‘World Book Day’ on 4th March by donating books and attending events at local community centres in Crewe and Nantwich.

‘World Book Day’ is being celebrated in Crewe and Nantwich with events at a number of local Community Centres. World Book Day is the biggest annual celebration of books and reading in the UK and Ireland and local Councillor Roy Cartlidge is helping to organise events at a number of centres in the West End of Crewe.

Roy Cartlidge said, “On Thursday 4th March from 8 o’clock in the morning until 8 o’clock in the evening, you can pop in at Beechmere Extra Care Village, Marshfield Community Centre, Webby’s Community Centre or St Barnabas Church Hall for a quick read or to listen to a story.”

David Williams said, “I am supporting ‘World Book Day’ locally by donating books that will be passed on to the Community Centres. I believe that books provide a gateway into the imagination, whether it is a story for youngsters, a biography of someone, an adventure novel of derring-do, or a factual reference book. Books are a source of wonderment and amazement and they inspire us to great things. Our own imagination can provide much better pictures than the television of movies.

He added, “If you have any books that you have read and no longer require, please bring them along to one of the centres on the day, or pass them on to either myself or Roy, so that they may be enjoyed by others. Do please try to pop in at one or more of the centres and see what’s going on.”

World Book Day

Friday, 26 February 2010


David Williams, the Labour Party’s Parliamentary Candidate for Crewe and Nantwich, has welcomed and supports ‘Fairtrade Fortnight 2010’ and urges residents and organisations in Crewe and Nantwich to get involved.

‘Fairtrade Fortnight 2010’ runs from Monday 22nd February until Sunday 7th March, and aims to increase the awareness and purchasing of Fairtrade products. This year the theme is ‘The Big Swap’ which encourages people to swap more products to Fairtrade. The target is one million and one swaps by the end of the Fortnight.

David said, “I am encouraging shoppers in Crewe and Nantwich to buy Fairtrade products during this fortnight, but not to stop there. Over 4,500 products have been licensed to carry the Fairtrade Mark and there are over 460 producer organisations selling to the UK, representing more than 1.5 million farmers and workers in developing countries. Small changes in our shopping habits can make a big difference to the world’s poorest people. By buying food, gifts and other products from developing countries, we can make a real difference to the lives of some of the world’s poorest people.”

Douglas Alexander, Labour’s International Development Secretary, said, “David Williams has been a passionate campaigner on fair trade. I hope shoppers across Crewe and Nantwich will join David during Fairtrade Fortnight and take the chance to swap their usual shopping for Fairtrade products.”

The Government has supported Fairtrade since 1997 with funding from the Department for International Development (DFID), but this year Labour is significantly boosting support for Fairtrade by quadrupling funding to £12m over the next four years (2010-2013) through the global body FLO. Farmers in developing countries will also see double the amount invested directly back through their local organisations for community projects such as irrigation and clinics through ‘Fairtrade Premiums’.

David commented, “When consumers and retailers act together to promote and buy goods from developing countries, we can make a real difference to peoples’ lives. I am supporting those people by buying Fairtrade products and I would urge residents of Crewe and Nantwich to join me in three simple steps. First, where possible swap your shopping for a Fairtrade labelled product. Second, if there is no Fairtrade labelled alternative, ask the retailer to offer Fairtrade products in future. Third, ask for clear labelling about where products have come from and about the working conditions of those who produced the goods. By ‘shopping for development’ we can held provide a vital route out of poverty for many, and by following these three simple steps we can have an immediate effect.”

Thursday, 25 February 2010

Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Questions to the candidates: David Williams on health

Labour created the National Health Service, which is our greatest achievement. The Tories bitterly opposed the NHS from the start and practically destroyed it in the 1980s and 1990s. We in Crewe and Nantwich know only too well because Leighton had the longest waiting list in the country under Mrs Thatcher.

Labour prioritised the health service, putting it back on its feet. Our investment breathed new life into the NHS after 18 years of neglect.

That investment has given us three new medical centres: Eagle Bridge, Rope Green and Church View. Leighton Hospital had a new ‘state of the art’ treatment centre (pictured), new eye clinic and a major refurbishment of the old hospital buildings.

Labour also looked after the staff, because they are the beating heart of the health service. I stood on a picket line at Leighton in the 1990s to end poverty pay for nurses. I also helped paramedics collect signatures in Crewe town centre for better pay. Labour significantly increased the pay of these important workers and the Tories heavily criticised us for that. Like other NHS users, I very much value the staff.

NHS Direct is a Labour innovation that we often take for granted. Operating out of the old Barony Hospital it is source of professional advice that’s just a phone call away.

Looking forward Labour will introduce a patient guarantee for everyone suspected of having Cancer. You will be seen in less than two weeks of your GP’s referral and receive the test results within one week. Everyone knows that the sooner you are diagnosed and treated for Cancer the better chance you have. I do not understand why the Tories won’t match Labour’s guarantee?

If you want it - you have to vote for it. Only Labour offers patient guarantees and continued NHS investment.

Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Letter to the Chronicle

Dear Sir

Instead of the Words from Westminster column continually knocking Crewe and Nantwich and talking down the area, wouldn't it be good to read something positive.

Perhaps I can give Chronicle readers a taste of my Words from Westminster should the voters of Crewe and Nantwich put their trust in me to be their MP.

The following written parliamentary question was answered recently: "How many pupils in Crewe and Nantwich constituency obtained five or more A* to C GCSE grades in each academic year since 1997?"

Responding, the Minister revealed that in every year of Labour in Government local school results have improved and overall a third more pupils now obtain five or more A* to C grades, rising from 45.7% in 1997 to 61.3% in 2008.

Congratulations to the young people of Crewe and Nantwich who have worked so hard to achieve this progress, a far cry from the Tories' "Broken Britain".

In light of this wonderful news will David Cameron still proclaim "We cannot go on like this"? Well I want to see the improvements in education carry on, that's why I support Labour's continued investment and oppose the Tories' promised "savage cuts".

I also wish to congratulate the hardworking staff in local schools who have made this improvement possible. All the teachers, classroom assistants and ancillary staff who do so much to give our children a great start in life. I speak to many parents in Crewe and Nantwich and I know they are very proud of their child's school and the progress that we've made together.

These achievements should be sung from the rooftops.

Yours faithfully

David Williams
Labour's Parliamentary Candidate
for Crewe and Nantwich

Friday, 12 February 2010


David Williams, Labour's Parliamentary Candidate for Crewe and Nantwich, has backed the campaign being run by ‘Scope’ to ensure that there is Access for All to polling stations on Election Day.

In the 21st Century you would think that disabled people would be able to vote independently and in secret like everyone else. At the 2005 General Election however, 68% of the polling stations across the country had one or more serious access barriers that could have prevented a disabled person from casting the vote.

David Williams has backed the ‘Polls Apart’ campaign being run by ‘Scope’ to ensure that disabled people have the same access to Britain’s democracy as everyone else and to make sure that the local polling stations in Crewe and Nantwich are fully accessible to local people with disabilities.

David said, “There are 10.6 million disabled people in Britain, that’s an average of around 15,000 disabled voters in each parliamentary constituency. I am calling on Cheshire East Council in the run-up to the General Election to make sure that each and every polling station throughout the Crewe and Nantwich constituency has suitable facilities for use by anyone with a disability.”

David went on to say, “Where a polling station does present difficulties, then the first and best option is to look for an alternative polling station in the area, but if this proves impossible, then there is a provision for the presiding officer to bring a ballot paper and the ballot box out of the polling station for someone who cannot walk from a car to the polling station.”

David added, “There is also the provision for anyone, for whatever reason, to request a Postal Vote, which will be sent direct to your home and can be completed and returned in a pre-paid envelope. The right to vote by post is no longer restricted to someone with a disability, or someone who is away on holiday. Anyone can now request a postal vote if they would prefer to vote in that way.”

David concluded by saying, “I am calling on Cheshire East Council to ensure that all these arrangements are in place in good time for the General Election.”

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Letter to the Chronicle

I think the column Words from Westminster should be renamed Spin from Tory Central Office. It is often nothing more than rehashed press releases passed down from Tory high command.

Last week (Chronicle, February 3) was no exception. Nothing more than dodgy claims on rises in violent crime that, if some commentators are right, will result in the Tory Shadow Home Secretary losing his job.

Well the current MP should know better and check his facts before he talks Crewe and Nantwich down, and paints a picture of the area being a violent and dangerous place to live. That simply is not true.

The facts are that that under Labour overall crime has fallen by 36% and violent crime has fallen by 41%. Far from the false Tory statistic of violent crime rising in Crewe and Nantwich by 148% in the last decade, as the MP stated (Chronicle, January 27). I can’t imagine what Cheshire’s Chief Constable or the council’s Safer and Stronger Communities Portfolio Holder thought when they saw that, perhaps they would care to comment?

I would like to thank Cheshire’s police officers and PCSOs for their hard work and dedication to reducing crime in these difficult economic times, unlike the Tories who seem to be suggesting that the police have lost control.

Conventional wisdom tells us that in recessions crime goes up. It rocketed in the Tory recessions of the 1980s and 1990s. However in the recent global economic downturn crime has actually gone down. In the Cheshire Constabulary area overall recorded crime is down by 9% over the last twelve months, with violence against the person down by 6%.

Labour has invested in the police by funding over 10,000 additional uniformed officers and introducing additional measures like ASBOs to help reduce crime and anti-social behaviour. Contrast that with the Tories who would have cut this year’s police budget by 10%, with further savage cuts to come.

Tackling crime needs an open and honest discussion, the current MP has fallen far short of that. Surely he owes the police and the readers of the Chronicle a humble apology for his gross misrepresentation of the truth?

David Williams
Labour's Parliamentary Candidate
for Crewe and Nantwich

Saturday, 6 February 2010


David Williams, Labour's Parliamentary Candidate for Crewe and Nantwich, has welcomed the announcement by HM Treasury that £700m will be made available to nearly 3,000 small businesses across the UK.

HM Treasury have announced that £700m of funding from the European Investment Bank will be made available to nearly 3,000 small businesses across the UK, through participating banks.

David Williams said, “Together with a range of other measures being implemented by the Government, this scheme will help to ensure that well managed small businesses in the UK will continue to have access to the best support available.”

Ian Pearson MP, Economic Secretary to the Treasury commented, “Support for SMEs is key to driving growth in the UK, so I am delighted that small businesses are benefiting from this finance. This scheme forms part of the Government’s continued commitment to help SMEs access the finance they need to take their businesses forward, which is vital to our long-term growth strategy.”

The Government’s aim of securing £1bn of finance from the European Investment Bank for SMEs has been more than achieved with banks having now secured a total of £1.39bn to help small businesses in the UK.

David Williams said, “There are a large number of small and medium sized enterprises in Crewe and Nantwich and I want to encourage all of them to get in touch with their local banks to find out if they can get access to this funding. It is an easy process and it is certainly worth pursuing.”

John Wright, National Chair of the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) said, “The FSB welcomes the news that nearly 3,000 SMEs will benefit from low cost loans. We continue to urge non-participating banks to enter the scheme to make loans available.”

David Williams added, “UK Banks that have been involved in this scheme include the Bank of Scotland (HBOS), Barclays Bank, Close Brothers, Lloyds-TSB, Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS including NatWest), Santander UK and Ulster Bank (for Northern Ireland – also part of the RBS Group). I would echo John Wright’s comments and urge other banks to join this scheme. These cheaper simpler and more flexible loans will enable increased investment to expand and I again urge small businesses in Crewe and Nantwich to contact their banks to see if they could benefit from this extra investment.”

Friday, 5 February 2010


David Williams, Labour's Parliamentary Candidate for Crewe and Nantwich, has called on Cheshire East Council to think again on it outrageous increase in marriage fees.

Cheshire East Council are proposing to make massive increases in their charges for marriage taking place in anywhere other than a church or registry office as from 1st April 2010.

David Williams said, “I find these proposed increase to be absolutely ludicrous. The Tories nationally are banging on about how they propose to support marriage and yet here we have the local Tories in Cheshire East imposing increases in marriage fees way about the rate of inflation. These proposals will deter many from getting married as they will just not be able to afford the extortionate fees and there will be a knock-on effect on the local economy as these proposals will also hit the hotels and other places where weddings take place.”

Councillor Dorothy Flude, Leader of the Labour Group on Cheshire East Council added, “Marriage is a very important ceremony for many people. Many struggle to put together enough money to have a marriage ceremony. Cheshire East is not encouraging people to get married at these prices.”

As from 1st April 2010, Cheshire East Council is proposing to increase the fee for ‘Marriage at Approved Premises’. The fees will vary depending on the day chosen for the wedding.

- On Monday to Friday the fee will increase from £250 to £385
- On Saturday before 2.00pm the fee will increase from £320 to £460
- On Saturday after 2.00pm the fee will increase from £330 to £600
- On Sunday the fee will increase from £320 to £500
- On Christmas Day, New Year’s Day, Good Friday and Easter Monday the fee will increase from £320 to £800
- On all other Public Holidays the fee will increase from £320 to £500.

These fees do not include the hire of the room or any other wedding services and must be paid four weeks in advance of the wedding.

David Williams commented, “Cheshire East proudly say on their web site ‘Welcome to Cheshire East, a county of beauty and contrasts. From idyllic rural locations to splendid historic towns, Cheshire East has the perfect setting for your Wedding’ Day’ and that there are over sixty licensed venues in Cheshire East to choose from, what they do not say is that, if you do choose to get married in any of these, then they will sting you for as much money as possible.”

Wednesday, 3 February 2010


David Williams, Labour's Parliamentary Candidate for Crewe and Nantwich, calls on Cheshire East Council to play fair with schools and school caretakers on Election Day

Cheshire East Council stand accused of ‘penny-pinching’ in their treatment of schools and school caretakers where the school is used as a Polling Station on Election Day. Typically a school caretaker will work from 7.30am until 6.00pm. If the school is being used as a Polling Station, the caretaker will be required work as normal and to be on-call for the full opening hours of the election. Polling Stations will be open from 7.00am until 10.00pm, but Cheshire East Council is only proposing to pay an extra half-hour at the start and an extra hour at the end of the day. This means that caretakers will be required to be on call for an extra four hours without any form of ‘on-call allowance’.

David Williams said, “I deplore this exploitation of school staff by Cheshire East Council. I understand that some School Governors are so concerned at the failure of the Council to play fair with their caretakers that they are proposing to pay the difference from their own budgets. Whilst I commend the actions of the Governors, I am concerned that the payments will be taken from their school funds. It is entirely wrong to force schools to use funds that should be used for educational purposes. The council should be making these payments direct.”