→ On Tuesday morning Graham Biggs MBE, Chief Executive of the Rural Services Network gave evidence to the Rural Economy Committee.
The Countryside Alliance also presented evidence and called for ‘rural proofing’ of future political decisions to ensure that ‘rural voices’ were heard in Whitehall. The Lords Regenerating Seaside Towns and Communities Committee heard evidence from representatives of the leisure industry on how best to support investment in seaside towns.
→ Later on Tuesday, the National Central for Rural Health and Care (NCRHC) was launched in parliament. The NCRHC has also joined the Rural Services Network to create the Rural Health and Care Alliance (RHCA) with the aim of creating a strong collective voice to fight for parity in health and care amongst rural communities.
On Wednesday 17th the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee heard evidence on the environmental implications of the Agriculture Bill. Also on Wednesday Michael Gove gave evidence to the Lords EU Energy and Environment Sub-Committee.
On Thursday 18th Chief Secretary to the Treasury Liz Truss held talks with the NFU, Countryside Alliance, Rural England, Rural Services Network, National Parks UK and Philip Dunne MP on rural broadband and the rural economy ahead of the budget.
Elsewhere on Thursday, the Science and Technology Committee published its report into flu vaccinations in England. The Committee was ‘shocked’ by the low number of vaccines, just 25 per cent in some social care settings.
On Monday 22nd, the Communities and Local Government Committee continues its inquiry into high streets and town centres. At 4.30pm the Committee will hear evidence from commercial landlords and the Royal Town Planning Institute.
On Tuesday 23rd the Lords Committee on Intergenerational Fairness will quiz senior officials and the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government on the impact of housing policy on different age groups and how the Government can promote fairness between generations. Also on Tuesday, the Lords Select Committee on the Rural Economy will hear evidence from local government and Local Enterprise Partnerships on their role in the rural economy. The Committee is asking what the main challenges are for supporting rural development and how local government can assist.
On Wednesday 24th the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee meets at to further scrutinise the Agriculture Bill. At 9.30am the committee will hear evidence from the British Meat Processors Association and Arla Foods. Later it will hear from the Country Land and Business Association, the Tenant Farmers Association, and Minette Batters, President of the National Farmers’ Union.
On Thursday 25th the Public Bill Committee scrutinises the Agriculture Bill.
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