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Showing posts from March, 2014

A disappointing government response to flooding in West Cornwall

Perhaps the title is a little misleading, I certainly could write a great long post on the subject in general. If you haven't seen it already Cllr Andrew Wallis has a great blog post revealing government funding for fishermen is not in fact new at all. Other government announcements have also been tokenistic. I wrote in the Western Morning News  on the budget and the chance it was to realign priorities in general, address the unfairness in budget cuts and funding for Cornwall, I wrote that the Chancellor's budget was high time for Cameron's grand announcement that "money is no object" and government will "pick up the tab" to be turned from empty rhetoric to actual funding. This unfortunately did not happen. This post aims to deal with the response to my letter to the Prime Minister, which I have finally received. Since I wrote that on the 23rd of February, Penzance Town Council unanimously voted to support a letter to the PM roughly saying the same thin…

The latest periodic Tory press release on Cornish devolution

Ten days ago I wrote on the Liberal Democrat's and a Cornish Assembly . Since then the Cities Minister (urban-centric much?)Greg Clark has come out and said that Cornwall might indeed get devolution, as the Western Morning News title suggests: Minister signals appetite for Cornwall devolution deal. My original thought was to think the same as I did with the Liberal Democrats, in short why now and not before, nearly 4 years of coalition government and nothing so far.

But I thought I'd look into it some more and find out what the Conservative Minister actually wanted. But the details are hard to nail down, as Stephen Richardson wrote of the Lib Dems approach. Both parties have vague pronouncements, despite both being in government, having a small fortune to develop policies and of course armies of bureaucrats to do their bidding, no firm details, no consultation barely a couple of paragraphs of press statements. Unlike Mebyon Kernow with a tiny budget in comparison and no taxpay…

Cornish Assembly and the Lib Dems

After months of campaigning for a Cornish Assembly by Mebyon Kernow. Liberal Democrats are the first political opponents to break cover and engage with the issue. No word yet from the other political parties, perhaps an idea yet to break into the Westminster bubble. Or perhaps Labour and the Conservatives are waiting to see what the other does. Days after MK launched the document Towards a National Assembly for Cornwall (pdf link), the Lib Dems voted at conference to make devolution party policy. Allowing Cornwall and other areas to have more say, the exact details are sketchy but not a million miles from my position and indeed Mebyon Kernow's. But why now? Coming up for 4 years of having Lib Dems in coalition government, 4 years of 3 Cornish Liberal Democrats at "the heart of government", 4 years of policies galore, 4 years of localism. This is the first we hear of it and not in the corridors of power or parliament itself no bills being drafted just a party conferenc…

My speech at the Cornish Assembly document launch

Below is the text of my speech to the launch of Mebyon Kernow- the Party for Cornwall's consultation document "Towards a National Assembly of Cornwall." The document is available online here and we are urging people to have their say and feed back to us. Quotes from my speech have already been featured on the Western Morning News site and on the Mebyon Kernow website. The full text is:

Myttin Da, Good Morning. Gool Peran Lowen. Happy St Piran’s day to you all. My name is Rob Simmons and I’m here today to talk about the history of Cornwall’s claim to devolution. I’m basically going to run through some key dates and events. Hopefully in the future this event today, will be added to a future list. The day in which the long held dream and plan of a Cornish assembly, had some flesh added to its bones.
Wishes for the future aside, it’s hard to know where to start in a history of Cornwall’s historical claim.  We could delve back into the annals of history and talk of ancient Celti…

Pictures: Penzance beach clean up success

A fantastic turn out in wet weather! The beach certainly looks a great deal better for it. The amount of rubbish removed is testament to that. The day was only marred by Cornwall Council's hardy and reliable traffic wardens who ticketed unsuspected beach cleaners. Below is some of the pictures of the clean up near Wherrytown. A small group of us cleaned up rubbish, dragged tyres, a crab pot and lobster pot off the beach. Also Cornwall Councillor Jim McKenna and myself dragged a large tangle of fishing net also pictured. Goes to show how hard these storms effect our fishing industry. Wet and cold I trudged back home warmed by the community spirit of this great town. A pleasure to play a small part.