I am sure you have all noticed that autumn is drawing in and it is already starting to get a lot colder. With that in mind, I am very pleased that colleagues in Westminster have confirmed that the energy price cap will not be removed, following discussions with leaders and consumers from the energy industry. This will protect millions of customers from fluctuations in gas prices as we level up the UK. Gas prices have been steadily rising around the world this year for a number of reasons, and we know this will be a worrying time for businesses and families and that is why - following meetings with leading energy providers – we have confirmed that the energy price cap will not be removed this winter, saving 15 million households up to £100 a year – building on the existing measures to protect consumers, including the Winter Fuel Payment and the Warm Home discount scheme. I have made the Minster quite aware that sudden hikes in energy prices are a serious concern for people in North Cornwall, so news of the price cap being kept comes as a great relief and will provide security and peace of mind this winter.
There has been a lot of speculation about the future of two of our local leisure centres (Wadebridge and Launceston). I was never a fan of the current leisure contract which was signed by the previous Lib Dem led council administration. Their failure to plan forward is one of the reasons we find ourselves in the position we are in today. Almost fifteen years ago, when I was on the old district council, and sat on the management committee for the leisure centres, later I supported the Camelford Leisure Centre becoming owned and operated by a local benefit society. I think we have an opportunity to learn from that project and perhaps do the same with Wadebridge and Launceston. I have also spoken to the cabinet member in the new administration and put across my ideas and the view of my constituents who want to keep both sites open. These centres have an enormously wide value to society – GPs recognise their importance in terms of social prescribing and so on. This is the time for creative solutions, Launceston Leisure Centre is run by a charity, and there is an opportunity to get the asset transferred back under local ownership as a non-for-profit. Following these discussions, I chaired a very productive meeting between my team and the Council members for Launceston. It was a great conversation and we all agreed that it was extremely important for Launceston to keep its leisure centre open. I've pledged to support the local community in any way I can. I’m looking forward to a similar meeting in Wadebridge.
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