Press Releases 2023
Roger regularly issues press releases about current topics. We have included a selection of them here which we hope will be of interest to you.
Pfizer Job Reductions at Sandwich - Statement
November 14th 2023
East Kent`s MPs Craig Mackinlay, Sir Roger Gale and Natalie Elphicke have expressed their regret following the announced reduction of 500 jobs at the Pfizer's site in Sandwich, Kent. The loss of employment locally will undoubtedly be a challenging development for the affected staff and their families.
November 14th 2023
There is no substitute for seeing it for yourself. A visit to the Minster Marshes site with farmer James Southorn (pictured) and Quex Farm Estates director Anthony Curwen, whose land is also under threat, has been very revealing. National Grid`s proposal to site a massively intrusive (up to 90 feet high) converter station and yet more hideous pylons immediately adjacent to Thanet`s only inshore SSSI (site of special scientific interest) represents an act of potential environmental vandalism on a massive scale. Which is perhaps why the SSSI was omitted from National Grid`s Scoping Report!
The project is not necessary. There are alternative brownfield sites at Kingsnorth Power Station and at Tilbury. Better still, the Grid should emulate the Netherlands and locate such converter stations as are actually needed offshore.
This land in East Kent produces some of the country`s finest bread-grade wheat and is home to dozens of species of birds, mammals and other wildlife. We owe it to future generations to protect this national asset and to challenge National Grid`s arrogant belief that it can build wherever it likes with impunity: it cannot and it must not.
November 4th 2023
Thank you to all our members of the new Herne Bay and Sandwich (with West Thanet) Conservative Association. Tonight saw our official opening of the new association with the newly elected Chairman Cllr George Kup, Deputy Chairman Political Cllr Daniel Friend and Deputy Chairman Membership Cllr Rachel Carnac bringing representation from across the new constituency. We are looking forward to working with residents in the new Herne Bay and Sandwich (with West Thanet) constituency.
Penny Mordaunt (Leader of the House)
October 26th 2023
That further to the Orders of 30 January and 23rd February 2023 the Order of 19th December 2022 relating to the appointment of Sir Roger Gale as Deputy Speaker and to exercise the functions of the Chairman of Ways and Means shall continue to have effect up to and including 31 March 2024.
Motion approved 26th October 2023
October 12th 2023
Herne Bay and Sandwich Conservative parliamentary candidate Sir Roger Gale MP has hit out at proposed charges for the use of the refurbished Sandwich Guildhall Forecourt.
“A great job has been done to revitalise the area” says Gale “and we now need it used to full advantage. That does not mean pricing potential exhibitors out of the marketplace-literally.”
“The terms of the Public Works Board loan are to me quite clear: the repayment of the loan has to be covered by the Thursday Market and not by levying fees on other enterprising users who will bring new life and business to the town.”
Sir Roger encourages residents to sign Cllr Dean Marie’s petition to help to stop these charges from happening
Manston set for take-off
September 22nd 2023
Manston set for take-off
I am naturally pleased that after an inordinate amount of delay Manston Airport can now prepare for take off. There is a vast sum of money waiting to be invested in East Kent and I would like to thank all of those, RiverOak, financial backers and the majority of the public who have kept the faith and got us to where we are today. I know that RiverOak intend to commence work as swiftly as practically possible and I look forward to the day when the next chapter of Manston’s proud aviation history will commence.
September 21st 2023
As one with five grandchildren and who cares passionately about the environment that they grow up in I am wholly committed to the Net Zero targets agreed internationally.
I do not, however, subscribe to the opinions expressed by some commentators about the effects of the Prime Minister`s statement yesterday.
While creating uncertainty in the investment market is unwelcome I believe that the Prime Minister is absolutely right to have injected a greater degree of reality into policy so that what we achieve is, while sticking to our goals, affordable and does not place us at a disadvantage in relation to our global competitors.
Not only was the cut-off date for the sale of petrol and diesel vehicles likely to prove damaging to those on the lowest incomes but it is highly unlikely that the necessary supporting infrastructure will be in place much before 2035. There is then the small matter of the electricity necessary to charge those vehicles for which, other than via carbon fuel generated power, there is as yet no constant and adequate supply. Battery storage is still in its infancy and for many drivers vehicle ranges are woefully inadequate.
My personal view, also, is that we should be concentrating much greater effort on the development of green hydrogen fuels (which are also electricity-intensive but can use surplus wind-generated power) rather than committing ourselves to a solely electric future. At present we are in danger of having too many eggs in one basket and missing out on a potentially huge international market.
It is also the case that the replacement of gas boilers with as yet unproven heat pumps would, if introduced prematurely, have placed an inordinate strain on budgets. The revised timescale for the replacement of carbon fuels with renewable energy sources will allow time for development, a smoother transition and still meet our net-zero commitments.
September 4th 2023
Problems caused through the use of RAAC (concrete) during the construction of Birchington Primary School and King Ethelbert’s Secondary School were identified many months ago. Since that time I have been in contact with both headteacher’s and have met with the Schools Ministers.
I am satisfied that all that can be done has been and is being done to protect the safety of schoolchildren and, through the provision of temporary classrooms, to keep both schools open and teaching maintained not online but in school.
Staff have made a great effort to maintain morale and education and know that I am immediately available should further assistance be required.
Private Jet Travel
July 18th 2023
The campaign proposal to phase out private jet aircraft travel begs a number of serious questions.
Is it intended that from 2030 all `private` jet aircraft should be banned from the United Kingdom? If so then there would be a hugely deleterious effect upon inward investment and the economy. We have no power to ban international jet travel and such a ban in the UK would simply direct traffic – and business – elsewhere.
Only the NHS
July 16th 2023
I use the National Health Service myself and arguably owe my life to it.
The NHS is staffed by dedicated medical professionals at every level , supported by equally dedicated secretarial and ancillary staff. Without the service huge numbers of people would not receive healthcare and it is right that the NHS accordingly receives massive Government support. The present administration`s commitment in terms of funding is unparalleled.
June 29th 2023
With the confirmation, today, of the new parliamentary constituency boundaries I look forward to campaigning in the new Herne Bay and Sandwich seat as the selected candidate for Sandwich, Little Stour and Ashstone and Sturry as well as my wards from the former North Thanet.
I shall be very sad to lose the wonderful and regenerating town of Margate but hope and expect that Craig Mackinlay will pick up where I am leaving off in the newly created East Thanet seat and take the Town Deal forward.
Biodiversity Emergency Declaration
June 28th 2023
In the recent 'Wild Isles' series, Sir David Attenborough demonstrated that in the UK over the past century, we have lost 98% of our wildflower meadows, 75% of our heathland, and more than 50% of our ancient woodland. These statistics are corroborated by a series of high-level reports, including the 2019 UK State of Nature report.
Local councillors are committed to finding solutions to protect and conserve the natural environment within the district and beyond, working closely with rural as well as urban communities. Earlier this year, the council's Biodiversity Working Group developed a 10 point plan to improve our natural habitats.
If you live, work or study in the Canterbury City Council area, including Herne Bay and the villages in the east of the district, please consider signing the petition calling on the council to debate a biodiversity emergency that prioritises the protection of nature and finding ways to improve our environment, protect habitat and conserve our open spaces - rurally as well as in our towns and cities.
Local Elections 2023
May 4th 2023
Today is your opportunity to vote for who will represent you on the Council, polls will be open 7am-10pm and you will need to bring a form of ID with you in order to cast your vote.
Here in Thanet the Conservative Party want to continue their hard work to:
Protect agriculture land and fight against overdevelopment.
Keep fighting to see Manston Airport re-open
Revitalise our coastline
Bring more jobs into Thanet
Vote Conservative today
Promoted by George Kup on behalf of North Thanet Conservative Candidates. All of the Old Forge, 215a Canterbury Road, Birchington, CT7 9AH
Click to watch.
Votes for Life
April 18th 2023
Apologies for the long silence: normal service will be resumed – eventually!
I am at present approved by the House to act as a Deputy Speaker until the end of this session (which means mid-October) after which I expect to resume my position on the Speaker`s Panel of Chairmen and on the back-benches.
In the meantime the attached letter from Baroness Scott relating to the Votes for Life (The “Harry Shindler Memorial”) Act may be of interest to those living or intending to live overseas and wishing to register to vote in the next General Election (At which I have been selected to fight what is proposed to be called the new Herne Bay and Sandwich parliamentary seat.)
I shall do my best to maintain the momentum on this issue.
Tourism Week 17th - 26th March
March 26th 2023
I visited local tourism and hospitality businesses in the constituency on yesterday which included The Seaside Museum and Cain’s Amusements in Herne Bay. I was accompanied by the Chair of English Tourism Week and Chief Executive of Visit Kent Deirdre Wells OBE in addition to staff members at both businesses.
March 23rd 2023
A further and disappointing delay at a time when we need to get on with the job.
Manston airport means investment and jobs and opponents need to understand the damage that they are doing to our local and national economy.
Acting Deputy Speaker
February 24th 2023
I am honoured to have been adopted tonight at the selection meeting, to fight the Herne Bay and Sandwich constituency at the next General Election.
Acting Deputy Speaker
February 23rd 2023
The following motion appears on the Commons Order Paper today:-
Penny Mordaunt (Leader of the House)
That, further to the Order of 30 January, paragraphs (1) and (2) of the Order of 19 December 2022 relating to the appointment of Sir Roger Gale as Deputy Speaker and to the exercise of the functions of the Chairman of Ways and Means shall continue to have effect for the remainder of the session.
I shall therefore be subject to the conditions relating to the holder of that office until mid-October 2023.
February 11th 2023
Maya and her team are doing an amazing job but they need more help to prepare the clothes and goods so generously donated for shipment to Turkey on Monday. If you are in or near The Bay and can assist do please drop by her shop (at the Hampton end of Herne Bay High Street)
She- and the quake victims- need and deserve all the help that they can get.
January 17th 2023
The judge’s ruling, which I trust will be accepted by all parties to the case, is clear and unequivocal. It will, I believe, clear the way for the massive investment in the re-development of Manston as a freight hub and subsequent passenger airport to commence very soon.
We have waited for a long time for this moment but the future is at last clear - the future of modern aviation is Manston.
I am grateful to all of those who have maintained their confidence in a project that is of great national as well as local importance.
January 9th 2023
Supporting Entain's 'Pitching In' Volunteer programme at Herne Bay's football club on Saturday
Huge opportunities for volunteer stewards, turnstile operators, announcers, and catering staff at The Bay's wonderfully refurbished ground and clubhouse and a great way to get behind our local mens and ladies teams.
Get in touch with the club at the MBS stadium at Winch's Field or visit https://pitchinginvolunteers.co.uk to find out more.