COLUMN: MP Matt Western talks cost-of-living and Joseph Arch - The Leamington Observer

COLUMN: MP Matt Western talks cost-of-living and Joseph Arch

This weekend marks a year since the mini budget introduced by now former Prime Minister Liz Truss and the, again, now former, Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng.

That mini budget led to pensions being at risk, huge increases in mortgages and soaring prices. A year on, we’re still seeing its impact. I know many people across Warwick, Leamington, Whitnash and the surrounding villages have seen their mortgages reach unaffordable levels, their shopping bill go up week on week and the money in their pocket be worth less and less.

The mini budget cost the country £45 billion, almost a third of the NHS’s annual budget. The decisions made in those 49 days with Liz Truss as our Prime Minister caused an impact that will last far longer than her premiership. When we hear her saying this week that she is having a “rather more relaxing September” than she did last year, I am sure it is a feeling that many across the country do not share as they battle the ever-growing pressures of the cost-of-living crisis made only worse by her short stint as Prime Minister.

If you are struggling with the cost-of-living, I have created a booklet containing some key contacts who may be able to help. Please email me at [email protected] to request a copy.

Earlier this month, I was proud to attend a service in Barford to celebrate the life of Joseph Arch. As many of you will know, he was a Barford local who led the way in improving working conditions and pay for agricultural workers across the country, which were pretty dire at the time. He began his career as a crow scarer at the age of nine, working twelve-hour days, then going on to help form the National Agricultural Labourers’ Union before becoming the first agricultural labourer to enter the House of Commons when he became an MP in 1885.

It was fantastic to see the local community come together once again to celebrate the life of such a prominent local figure. I’m sure many of us will have celebrated Joseph one way or another when enjoying the pub named after him in Barford.

Finally, I was pleased to attend an event in London earlier this week on the automotive industry. It was clear that an industrial strategy is as needed as ever, and this Government is failing to deliver one. This industry is one that is so important to our local economy, and I will keep pushing in Parliament for urgent action on this matter.

As always, please do not hesitate to get in touch if you have any issues or concerns you would like to raise with me. I can be reached on [email protected] or on 01926 882006.

Matt Western

MP for Warwick and Leamington

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