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In the South West - the parents in Torbay who hope for more Grammar
Schools and the people who fear for the future of these fields outside
Apology for the loss of subtitles for 2173 seconds
Although,, up on the Sunday Politics in the South West. The
parents her would like to see more grammar school places in South
Devon. And for the next 20 minutes I am
joined by Neil Parish, the Conservative MP for Tiverton and
Honiton, and Darren Cowell, Labour MP for Torbay. Welcome to the
programme. This week the Government has faced criticism for introducing
VAT to hot food. Do you think this is a good move?
As low as it is a Devon pasty but are not a Cornish one, because
Devon pasties are much better. It is only tightening up on operation
to make sure everyone pays VAT on hot food, because some pasties are
already being charged, therefore it is only at tidying up. I know it
has captured the imagination of the public, but some pasties already
served hot are charged VAT. We as weekend the Government may be
thinking themselves unpopular and thinking it perhaps maybe not worth
it. -- this weekend. It has been one of those things
that has borne out of control. My imagine the Chancellor will look at
it, but some shops and takeaways are already having to charge VAT
and others are not. Perhaps it is not such a terrible thing, but look
at it in the cold light of day again and see what the reaction is.
There is certainly confusion and muddle around this. What is ambient
temperature? In January it is probably different to August. There
is a huge amount of confusion. What is most important is that any
measures don't impact upon our important food industry. It is not
just pasties, it is sausage rolls, anything that can be served hot or
potentially cold. We cannot damage that trade. Thank you for your
thoughts on that. There were fears that cutting red
tape in planning would lead to developers -- and Development
Charter. The function of sustainable development is no water
down, and the onus is no one councils to decide where to build
thousands of homes in the South West. There are still some who
think the countryside is at risk. With a view like this, Ian Hubbard
says it is hard not to be a proud Truro resident. Where we are
standing we can actually see green fields, and you cannot say that
about many cities in this country. He is a campaigner for sustainable
Development, which has just got the go-ahead for the local council. He
is still worried about the future despite concessions on the use of
brownfield sites first. I liked the bit about the viability
of town centres, I like the bit about out-of-town supermarket being
a last resort, but does it actually mean what it says?
Rejecting top down housing targets, the new guidance puts emphasis on
local plans. Local authorities will decide how many new Houses are
needed and in town and parish councils communities themselves
will prioritise where and when Houses shall be built.
Cornwall council is working towards a target of more than 40,000 new
homes over the next 20 years. It is decisions taken over the next 12
months that could affect fields like these on the outskirts of
Truro. Consultation in Cornwall is still
under way and across the South West: authorities are finalising
plans. In Devon, and need for around 75,000 new homes has been
identified. In Somerset the figure is 47,000. And in Dorset there is a
provisional figure of around 12,500. Councils have one near to get
communities engaged and plans in place or leave themselves exposed.
If we do not identify a land in the core strategy, developers will
cherry-pick parcels of land easier for them to develop and get away
with it. We have unique decisions on where housing will goal, a waste
will goal, and planners will be able to tell any developers this is
where it will goal, you cannot build there.
A countryside campaigners could struggle to meet demand in drawing
up local plants and question the need to build so many homes at all.
A think we have development, but when you think of it, Cornwall is a
pfennig area. Although this national planning policy framework
calls for councils to earmark land, 5% of land for future development,
it will not take many years before Cornwall is used up, and then what
happens? He we with around 23,000 people on Cornwall's housing
register, average prices nine times average wages, and a growing
population, affordable housing campaigners say the new approach is
long overdue. When people see endless,
unattractive housing estates circling historic, beautiful tones
and ruining them, they get I write about it. -- beautiful towns. A
hope the new framework will mean that better schemes can go forward
more easily and more quickly. We will get the homes people need, but
unattractive schemes that destroy open spaces that people care about
are less likely to warhead. There are warnings developers could
rush now to try and exploit the new relaxed rules before local plans
are put in place. Although it is unclear how the new guidance will
be implemented, some campaigners say this could be a lawyer's
charter. To discuss this from our Truro
studio we have Stephen Gilbert, Lib Dem MP for Newquay and some Borstal.
Welcome to the programme. Will thus become a lawyer's charter?
I don't think my concern is that it will become a lawyer's charter, we
now have one year for local authorities like Cornwall to put in
place their core strategies and neighbourhood plans. At that point
local people will have much more control over the planning system
than they have over recent years. Until then, my concern is that
developers will put in speculative applications, appeal for non-
determination where local planning committees either take too long or
come out with a no, that what we will see is the localism principle
that should be embedded in our planning system being overridden by
developers... So sorry to interrupt you, but there are strategies in
place in this new policy to stop this from happening.
Yes, but we have a hiatus for one year, while quote -- local
neighbourhoods gather their core strategies. It is right that this
is an urgent task for local authorities and local people. For
too long we have had a top-down, regionally led, unaccountable
planning system that has dumped development -- developments that
communities have not wanted. Do you think Stephen is right about
having concerns on the implementation of this policy?
In his, I think towns, villages and hamlets must get at their local
plants in place. -- local plans in place. What is important right note
is to stop... The last Government had at 250,000 target on the South
West for homes and that was imposed on Devon and Cornwall and that is
not right. Now we have a villages and towns that can look for
affordable housing sites and put them in the planning process.
Darren, do you think this is a good thing? Do you think it was all top
down under Labour and the Conservatives have got this right?
For Ashley, at last the Government actually listen, the first draft
was a bit of a dog's dinner and badly thought I would. In Torbay we
are very much undergoing the neighbourhood planning process
already. A but will it provide enough homes? Will you get as many
homes needed in Torbay as you would have done with the targets Labour
had in place? I think there were sufficient
numbers of new homes and jobs. Apparently we are looking at half
the number of new homes that were to be introduced under the target
system. But it is providing sufficient
homes for the actual forecast population growth in any given
region. There is no point building on greenfield sites when you can
provide the number of properties you need to House people using
properties that are brought back into use and using brown fields.
Will it end not in my back yard feelings? Surely you're giving that
more power, our review? I go things will, I don't think giving power to
people to the people in the community will do that.
There are many people in Cornwall who are determined to provide
affordable housing for the 20,000 people on the waiting list, or the
entire generation who are priced out of the housing market now in
the South West. What is important is that it goes where local
communities go -- wanted to go, that's not what builders want the
trouble. The his way, councillors in Kent
backed a plan for the first major expansion of a grammar school in
England for 50 years. This will give hope to parents and
the South West to look at the remaining grammar schools today,
more pupils. The concept of expanding grammar-school education
remains controversial. After a long day at school...
Homework beckons for 10-year-old Tom. But it is not just school what
he has to do. On top of that, he is preparing to set his 11-plus
examination, which means extra homework. P does not seem to mind,
as getting a place at Torquay's grammar-school is his main goal.
The facility is our amazing and I just think it will be really good
fun to go there. -- the facilities. And a his mum is
working hard to support him, paying for weekly private tuition. She has
not worries about grammar schools expanding as she thinks they could
potentially cast their nets further. By would not be against it. If they
can share their skills and abilities and more children can
benefit, I don't think there is a problem with that. Neither does
Kent County Council. On Thursday, councillors supported plans for the
creation of a satellite grammar school in Sevenoaks, possibly on
this site. 2,500 parents in the area have already petitioned for
rich trouble ahead. It would be the first major expansion of selective
education for 50 years. But it is controversial. In 1998, Labour
banned the opening of any new grammar school, and the coalition
Government has done nothing to change that law. But it is allowing
good schools to expand. Records published in February give schools
the power to take on more pupils without consultation.
This week, a Liberal Democrat peer, Baroness Wolseley, asked the
Government to clarify its position. The Minister told her there would
be no new grammar schools, but she was not satisfied. A thank my noble
friend the Minister for restating that policy, however I don't see
how that stacks up with the potential for doubling the number
of school places in which a selection operates in certain areas.
Under the School Standards and Framework Act, 1998, no new drama
stills can open. Can my noble friend tell me, what is the
criterion for a new school, and why the planned satellite school in
Sevenoaks can claim to not be a new school but part of a grammar school
many miles away? David Robinson campaigns against
selective education. He is concerned this could set a
precedent in places like Torbay. can not see any need for them to be
expanding. There is no evidence whatsoever
that people from goal to crammers schools do any better. -- that
pupils who go to grammar schools. There is evidence that pupils who
bought two non-selective schools do better. They are perceived as being
better at educating children because they pick of the most
intelligent children from a wide area. -- they pick the most
intelligent. Last year of the national press
were interested that Torquay Boys Grammar School was merging with a
local school. But this was dismissed as unfounded speculation
in the school's newsletter. No one from the school was available for
comment this week. A Tom faces stiff competition to
get into his local grammar school. Perhaps if they expand in Torbay
future pupils will have a better chance.
Neil, new have a grammar school in your constituency, Darren, you have
Torquay's grammar school in your patch. Could this lead to an
expansion in Devon of grammar schools and should it? A year in
favour of grammar schools? The s, at that grammar school is
excellent, and so is our Community School, as well. -- yes, I am. It
gives parents a choice. If you have an area like Kent, where they run a
huge number of children waiting to go to a grammar school, there could
well be an idea of creating a campus of sight. Parents and
children want choice, and I think it is a case of making sure we
invest in grammar schools and academies. It is doing it by the
backdoor, isn't it? If you say it is the same grammar
school but is ten miles away and will have independent teachers, can
you see it as part of the main Ysgol y Berwyn it I will be
controlled by the head teacher and grammar-school itself.
It could be. The distances could well be a problem. Our Grammar
School, for instance, is in a fine spot where it is at the moment, so
there may be an argument of moving the school gradually. Why not just
abolished the 1998 band and say, let's do this up front and have a
new grammar schools? A number of us would say yes to
that. In including yourself? including myself. But that is not
Government policy. Why do think the whole idea of our education policy
to give parents more choice is good and I think grammar-school is part
of that. Darren Cowell, argue in favour of
grammar schools? Nor, I am not, and in Torbay we had
grammar schools in the 1970s, when there was a very strong campaign to
obtain them against the Labour Government's then wishes. You we
like to see the Torquay Grammar has become part of mainstream
schooling? Absolute life. But, sadly, the
direction of travel in education at the moment with the roll-out of
academies and the number of schools that became a cannabis, the
influence of local authorities and councillors on those schools is
rapidly diminishing. One is it you do not like? Is it
right that 11-year-olds should be put under such pressure?
I think there is a lot of pressure throughout the curriculum now, I
don't think the eleven-plus is a problem. What I was going to come
back on is that the whole education policy is to get parents more
choice and governors choice on how to run their schools. If there is
an area, where there is division, I think in the past we did not invest
enough in secondary education but now we're making sure it is there.
That the is a valid point Monk, because in Torbay we had huge
investment in grammar schools at the expense of the secondary
moderns. We now have a situation where we
have a brand new school in Torbay, a community college, and it is
interesting that grammar schools are showing an interest in that
campus. We now have our regular round-up of
The Defence Secretary came to Plymouth to sign a multi-million-
pound contract which will secured 1,300 jobs.
This will be a our sole location for deep maintenance of submarines.
The States of Jersey announced they will plead -- pay compensation to
victims of historical told abyss. They are people in St Denis
discovered the incinerator plant for their doorstep will go ahead
after the Government won its appeal. The campaigners say they have not
given up. A wave will continue to raise however much money we have to
to carry on the fight. -- we will continue. A centre-right
think-tank administers to reconsider plans for a badger cull.
And that the Prime Minister made the case for the pasty tax. A I a r
pasty eater myself, I go to Cornwall on holiday.
What will Cornwall's MPs queued up to defend at the County's signature
dish. -- whilst Cornwall's MPs. There is Stephen Gilbert enjoying
his pasty. Let's talk about badgers. Neil, you
are in favour of culling badgers. Does this move why you?
-- worry you? A well, we had clear support from
the Secretary of State in the House when she talked about pilot calls.
There is disease in cattle and wildlife that we are trying to take
disease out of the cattle whilst we still have the disease in badgers.
We have to control them. It look slightly this may be reconsidered
now. I'd do not think we will. We have
decided to have the pilot calls that has been suggested, and as
soon as that has finished we will go through to that.
Darren Cowell, are you in favour of it? A be like them to consider a
badger cull, I have always been opposed to it, but the fact we have
a potential for these pilot schemes the likelihood is they will proceed.
The evidence will be that further culling will not occur.