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Recent News For Maidstone

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  • Jasper at train station
    Article: Oct 22, 2014

    Following a campaign by Jasper Gerard to win a fair deal for Maidstone commuters, local Lib Dems have produced a value for money table showing those who travel to London from the County town receive the worst deal in the entire South East commuter belt.

    Maidstone commuters pay the highest annual season ticket for one of the very slowest commutes into the capital. They pay £4080 a year - without tube fares -for a journey that takes an hour and ten minutes.

  • Junction 8
    Article: Oct 21, 2014

    A planning application for a huge industrial estate at a green field site in the picturesque Len valley, close to Leeds Castle and M20 J8, at Hollingbourne was refused by Maidstone Council's planning committee on Thursday night.

    Only the Tories voted in favour. Having viewed all the evidence both for and against on this re-submitted application everyone else at planning committee including all of the Liberal Democrat members of the committee voted to refuse the application, with Lib Dem planning spokesman Tony Harwood proposing the motion for refusal, which was seconded by South Ward Councillor Ian Chittenden.

  • Tony Harwood
    Article: Oct 20, 2014

    The following is a letter published in last week's Kent Messenger by Maidstone Lib Dem Planning Spokesman, Cllr. Tony Harwood:

    Contrary to the assertion of your anonymous correspondent (Letters 10th October 2014) local Liberal Democrats do not believe that countryside protection and quality jobs are mutually exclusive. Indeed, we are convinced that the opposite is true.

  • Article: Oct 18, 2014

    The basic state pensions will rise by at least £2.85 a week thanks to the Liberal Democrats triple lock. It means 262,306 pensioners in Kent will benefit from an increase in their pension.

    This rise will bring the level of the state pension to at least £115.95 and will benefit millions of pensioners across the UK. This is £18.30 more, each week, than in 2010 when the Liberal Democrats entered coalition. This means pensioners on the full basic state pension are £950 a year better off than they were under Labour.

  • Article: Oct 17, 2014

    "It's a rip off," says Jasper Gerard after shock study

    A study of commuter fares by local Liberal Democrats shows that Maidstone commuters pay more for their train journey to work than any comparable commuter town in the South East.

    Maidstone commuters have to pay over £4,000 a year for the privilege of trundling up to London on trains slower than in the age of steam. And this is £1,000 a year MORE than commuters pay from Tonbridge, which is on a much faster line with regular services to the City and West End - and fares from West Kent are themselves 20% more expensive than from other Home Counties commuter belts.

  • Article: Oct 16, 2014

    A record fall in unemployment shows Britain is the "job creation capital" of the developed world, Danny Alexander said.

    In the year to August unemployment dropped 538,000 - the largest annual fall on record.

    The drop took the unemployment rate to 6%, its lowest level since late 2008, according to the Office for National Statistics.

  • Article: Oct 15, 2014

    Having taken NINE MONTHS to produce a report on the Christmas floods, Maidstone Conservatives refused to debate their own conclusions on live radio.

    It was left to Jasper Gerard, standing here at the general election for the Liberal Democrats, to assess the findings on BBC Radio Kent.

    "The report completely fails to address big questions, such as whether flooding will be worse if the Conservatives pursue plans to allow up to 19,600 houses to be built in our borough," says Jasper "This potentially includes a large number in Yalding.

  • Catherine Bearder MEP at the European Parliament
    Article: Oct 1, 2014

    How would you like a day in Brussels, hosted for lunch by your MEP Catherine Bearder?

    As well as chatting to Catherine over lunch she will welcome you to the European Parliament and give you a guided tour. There will also be the opportunity to watch a debate.

    Demand has been keen so if you would be interested please contact Sue Grigg urgently on 07706 052495 or by email.

  • Vince Cable and Jasper Gerard
    Article: Sep 25, 2014

    The Business Secretary spoke to a packed meeting of local entrepreneurs at a dinner in Maidstone hosted by Jasper Gerard, Lib Dem parliamentary candidate for the area.

    Jasper is establishing a regular non-party political forum for businesses to talk to top figures in government. Many prominent local business figures were present.

  • Jasper Gerard meets local apprentices
    Article: Sep 23, 2014

    Jasper Gerard called today's positive labour market figures in Maidstone "no accident" and said Liberal Democrats in Government were delivering the recovery fairly.

    Official figures show the number of people claiming Job Seeker's Allowance in Maidstone fell by more than 5% in the past month.

    Nationally the unemployment rate fell to 6.2% - its lowest since the end of 2008.

  • Lib Dem Office at 23 Union Street
    Article: Sep 21, 2014

    The Local Lib Dems have moved into bigger offices, still at their existing address at 23 Union Street.

    Jasper Gerard, the Lib Dem parliamentary candidate, will now have more room to see constituents. Currently he is helping about 200 a month with their problems.

    Jasper is the only parliamentary candidate in this constituency who has a fully-staffed office where members of the public are free to drop in.

  • Maidstone Town Hall
    Article: Sep 19, 2014

    Lib Dem Success - Lower Council Tax Bills:

    An attempt by Maidstone Conservatives to slash the frequency of local elections from three out of every four years down to just once every four years has been defeated by Maidstone Lib Dems, supported by other like minded councillors.

    Local Lib Dems successfully argued that in councils with annual elections politicians are 'kept on their toes'. They tend to have lower average council tax increases and unpopular policy changes are not 'buried' at the beginning of four year terms.

    North Ward Lib Dem Councillor Tony Harwood in an impassioned speech told gathered councillors at Maidstone Town Hall: "Annual council elections are a vital check and balance on financial and political recklessness, and that most unappealing habit of politicians of relying on the public having short memories."

    Lib Dem Success - Greater Influence for Local Communities:

  • Jasper Gerard and Vince Cable MP
    Article: Sep 19, 2014

    Vince Cable, Business Secretary, will be in Maidstone next week to address a business forum organised by Jasper Gerard, Lib Dem parliamentary candidate.

    The forum will be at the Maidstone Hilton on the 23rd September.

    Many of the most prominent business figures in Maidstone and the Weald will be there.

  • Jasper Gerard with executive head Lorna Priddle and pupils
    Article: Sep 4, 2014

    As infants go back to school where they will enjoy free school dinners, £77,000 has been provided to upgrade Maidstone school kitchens.

    The money has been provided by Liberal Democrat ministers to help local schools ensure that every child has at least one proper meal a day.

    "I will be visiting schools to ensure the free school meal programme has a successful start," says Jasper Gerard, Lib Dem parliamentary campaigner. "School meals not only ensure children are not going hungry, they also boost attainment of all our children."

  • Jasper Gerard and Vince Cable MP
    Article: Sep 3, 2014

    Vince Cable, one of Britain's most powerful and outspoken politicians, is coming to Maidstone.

    The Business Secretary will speak in Maidstone on the 23rd September at a business forum as a guest of Jasper Gerard, parliamentary candidate for Maidstone and the Weald.

    The forum, at the Maidstone Hilton, will be attended by local businesses who will learn about the Coalition government's economic plans for the rest of this parliament. It will also be a showcase for innovative local companies to put their achievements in the shop window.

  • Canterbury Goes Green
    Article: Sep 1, 2014

    Stuart Jeffrey, the Green Party's former parliamentary candidate and frequent candidate for Maidstone Borough Council has announced he will not be standing for Maidstone and the Weald in the next general election, but will stand in Canterbury instead.

    This move is a recognition that in Maidstone is the Liberal Democrats which is recognised as the party which is standing up for the environment, and unlike the Greens, have been defeating the Conservatives in elections. It is the Liberal Democrats who have consistently fought Conservative plans to concrete over our green spaces whilst the Green Party has offered ever more bizarre policies, such as "moving" Yalding!

  • Jasper Gerard and Cllr. Fran Wilson
    Article: Aug 29, 2014

    Maidstone Liberal Democrats have been arguing that new trends for household growth from the Office of National Statistics should be used to reduce Maidstone's housing numbers in the new Local Plan. At the meeting on Tuesday 19th August of the Planning, Transport and Development Scrutiny Committee the housing need figure was duly reduced from 19,600 to 18,600.

  • Jasper Gerard and Vince Cable MP
    Article: Aug 28, 2014

    YOUR INVITATON TO MEET RT HON VINCE CABLE MP, SECRETARY OF STATE FOR BUSINESS, INNOVATION AND SKILLS AND PRESIDENT OF THE BOARD OF TRADE

    Since Jasper Gerard, former chief interviewer for The Sunday Times, was selected as Parliamentary Candidate for Maidstone and the Weald in March 2013 he has made a huge local impact. It is now his intention to give businesses the opportunity to gain the inside track on the plans of the coalition government by arranging a visit to Maidstone from the Business Secretary.

  • Jasper Gerard and Catherine Bearder MEP at YMCA nursery
    Article: Aug 26, 2014

    Every infant in Kent will receive free lunches when they return to school, the Lib Dems can reveal.

    There had been claims that schools could not provide the catering facilities. However, Nick Clegg, who pioneered the free school lunch programme, has persuaded the Treasury to chip in additional cash to ensure every school in Kent would be able to provide local youngsters with a decent meal in the middle of the day.

  • Jasper Gerard and Ann Barnes a local Policing conference
    Article: Aug 12, 2014

    A dedicated team of rural police officers has been promised for the Weald after Jasper Gerard, Lib Dem parliamentary campaigner, raised the problem of rural crime at a conference near Maidstone on Monday.

    Jasper, speaking on a platform with Ann Barnes, told the Police and Crime Commissioner that many local people and small businesses had raised with him the lack of police presence in rural areas.