David Warburton Portrait

David Warburton

Conservative - Somerton and Frome


There are no upcoming events identified
Division Votes
Tuesday 23rd November 2021
Health and Care Bill
voted No - in line with the party majority
One of 300 Conservative No votes vs 0 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 191 Noes - 307
Speeches
Thursday 18th November 2021
Touring Musicians: EU Visas and Permits

It is a pleasure to see you in the Chair, Dr Huq, and it is a pleasure to follow the …

Written Answers
Thursday 25th November 2021
Trees
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will publish a table showing the …
Early Day Motions
Wednesday 16th June 2021
Support for the music sector and the covid-19 roadmap
That this House notes that stage four of the covid-19 roadmap has been moved from 21 June to 19 July …
Bills
Rivers Authorities and Land Drainage Bill 2017-19
A Bill to make provision about rivers authorities; to make provision about the expenses of internal drainage boards; and for …
Tweets
Wednesday 24th November 2021
18:27
MP Financial Interests
Monday 26th July 2021
3. Gifts, benefits and hospitality from UK sources
Name of donor: UK Music
Address of donor: Savoy Hill House, 7-10 Savoy Hill, London WC2R 0BU
Amount of donation …
EDM signed
Wednesday 27th January 2021
Visas for musicians in the EU
That this House applauds the over 100 musicians who wrote to The Times on 20 January 2021 and agrees that …

Division Voting information

During the current Parliamentary Session, David Warburton has voted in 314 divisions, and 13 times against the majority of their Party.

25 Mar 2021 - Coronavirus - View Vote Context
David Warburton voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 35 Conservative No votes vs 305 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 484 Noes - 76
22 Mar 2021 - Trade Bill - View Vote Context
David Warburton voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 29 Conservative Aye votes vs 318 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 300 Noes - 318
22 Mar 2021 - Trade Bill - View Vote Context
David Warburton voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 26 Conservative No votes vs 318 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 319 Noes - 297
22 Mar 2021 - Fire Safety Bill - View Vote Context
David Warburton voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 33 Conservative No votes vs 320 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 322 Noes - 253
26 Jan 2021 - Environment Bill - View Vote Context
David Warburton voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 6 Conservative Aye votes vs 352 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 217 Noes - 360
26 Jan 2021 - Environment Bill - View Vote Context
David Warburton voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 5 Conservative Aye votes vs 354 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 227 Noes - 354
19 Jan 2021 - Trade Bill - View Vote Context
David Warburton voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 34 Conservative No votes vs 319 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 319 Noes - 308
6 Jan 2021 - Public Health - View Vote Context
David Warburton voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 12 Conservative No votes vs 322 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 524 Noes - 16
1 Dec 2020 - Public Health - View Vote Context
David Warburton voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 53 Conservative No votes vs 290 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 291 Noes - 78
13 May 2020 - Remote Division result: New Clause 2 - View Vote Context
David Warburton voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 22 Conservative Aye votes vs 326 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 277 Noes - 328
10 Mar 2020 - Telecommunications Infrastructure (Leasehold Property) Bill - View Vote Context
David Warburton voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 36 Conservative Aye votes vs 301 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 282 Noes - 306
27 Apr 2021 - Fire Safety Bill - View Vote Context
David Warburton voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 31 Conservative No votes vs 320 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 320 Noes - 256
28 Apr 2021 - Fire Safety Bill - View Vote Context
David Warburton voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 32 Conservative No votes vs 321 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 322 Noes - 256
View All David Warburton Division Votes

Debates during the 2019 Parliament

Speeches made during Parliamentary debates are recorded in Hansard. For ease of browsing we have grouped debates into individual, departmental and legislative categories.

Sparring Partners
Robert Jenrick (Conservative)
(2 debate interactions)
Kevin Brennan (Labour)
(2 debate interactions)
Boris Johnson (Conservative)
Prime Minister, First Lord of the Treasury, Minister for the Civil Service, and Minister for the Union
(2 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
HM Treasury
(4 debate contributions)
Cabinet Office
(3 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
Legislation Debates
David Warburton has not made any spoken contributions to legislative debate
View all David Warburton's debates

Somerton and Frome Petitions

e-Petitions are administered by Parliament and allow members of the public to express support for a particular issue.

If an e-petition reaches 10,000 signatures the Government will issue a written response.

If an e-petition reaches 100,000 signatures the petition becomes eligible for a Parliamentary debate (usually Monday 4.30pm in Westminster Hall).

Petitions with highest Somerton and Frome signature proportion
Petitions with most Somerton and Frome signatures
David Warburton has not participated in any petition debates

Latest EDMs signed by David Warburton

16th June 2021
David Warburton signed this EDM as the primary signatory on Wednesday 16th June 2021

Support for the music sector and the covid-19 roadmap

Tabled by: David Warburton (Conservative - Somerton and Frome)
That this House notes that stage four of the covid-19 roadmap has been moved from 21 June to 19 July 2021; further notes that many music businesses and freelance workers have been without work since March 2020 and that, in 2020, 70 per cent of musicians lost over three quarters …
31 signatures
(Most recent: 25 Oct 2021)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 17
Liberal Democrat: 5
Conservative: 3
Scottish National Party: 3
Democratic Unionist Party: 1
Green Party: 1
Social Democratic & Labour Party: 1
Independent: 1
27th January 2021
David Warburton signed this EDM as a sponsor on Wednesday 27th January 2021

Visas for musicians in the EU

Tabled by: Harriet Harman (Labour - Camberwell and Peckham)
That this House applauds the over 100 musicians who wrote to The Times on 20 January 2021 and agrees that the UK Government must immediately seek supplementary agreement with the EU to secure the ability of all creative workers including musicians, performers, their equipment and others such as technicians to …
81 signatures
(Most recent: 11 May 2021)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 45
Scottish National Party: 15
Liberal Democrat: 10
Plaid Cymru: 3
Independent: 3
Social Democratic & Labour Party: 2
Alba Party: 2
Conservative: 1
Green Party: 1
Alliance: 1
View All David Warburton's signed Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by David Warburton, and are more likely to reflect personal policy preferences.

MPs who are act as Ministers or Shadow Ministers are generally restricted from performing Commons initiatives other than Urgent Questions.


David Warburton has not been granted any Urgent Questions

David Warburton has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

1 Bill introduced by David Warburton


A Bill to make provision about rivers authorities; to make provision about the expenses of internal drainage boards; and for connected purposes.


Last Event - 2nd Reading : House Of Lords
Thursday 16th May 2019
(Read Debate)
Next Event - Committee Stage: House Of Lords
Date TBA

David Warburton has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


21 Written Questions in the current parliament

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department
15th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will publish a table showing the number of (a) tree equivalents burnt at the Drax power station and (b) trees planted in the UK in each of the last five years.

The Department does not model tree equivalents of biomass used by power generators. Ofgem reports volumes of biomass fuel, such as wood pellets, used by power generators on a per-tonne basis.

UK tree planting statistics, held by the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), are reported in terms of area (hectares). The most recent data was published on 30th September (https://www.forestresearch.gov.uk/tools-and-resources/statistics/forestry-statistics/forestry-statistics-2021/1-woodland-area-planting/ and https://www.forestresearch.gov.uk/documents/8144/Ch1_Woodland_FS2021_kRWbQlW.xlsx). UK tree planting over the past five years was as follows: 6,520 ha (2016-17); 9,050 ha (2017-18), 13,540 ha (2018-19), 13,660 ha (2020-21) and 13,290 ha (2020-21)

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
15th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent estimate he has made of the transport costs per MWh in terms of carbon dioxide emissions for power generated at Drax from (a) coal and (b) wood pellets.

The Government does not hold this information. Electricity generators only receive subsidies for biomass where they comply with the UK’s stringent sustainability criteria. The criteria requires that electricity generation from biomass does not exceed a set GHG threshold and produces life-cycle GHG emission savings (including transport and supply chain emissions) compared to fossil fuels. Suppliers/generators must demonstrate to the regulator (Ofgem) that they meet the criteria. Their evidence is independently audited.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
15th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he plans to take to help ensure that the businesses in Somerton and Frome constituency that have benefited from the construction of Hinkley Point C will have a future pipeline of contracts to move on to through the development of further gigawatt nuclear new build in the UK.

The Government has been clear that it wants more new nuclear power. Our Net Zero Strategy confirms plans for at least one large-scale nuclear project brought to the point of Final Investment Decision by the end of this Parliament, subject to clear value for money and all relevant approvals. Any large-scale nuclear new build project would be expected to offer similar opportunities for the supply chain as at Hinkley Point C.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
15th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the potential to replicate the economic benefits of Hinkley Point C to Somerton and Frome constituency in other areas of the country through the development of future gigawatt nuclear new builds.

The construction of Hinkley Point C shows that new gigawatt nuclear power stations can provide economic benefits to their local area, as well as to regions across the UK through the supply chain. EDF have reported that £3.5 billion has been spent with companies in the South-West during the construction period, with Hinkley Point C creating 12,786 job opportunities and 787 apprentices trained to date. The government expects future larger scale nuclear new build project to have similar benefits to Hinkley Point C, and we have committed to at least one more gigawatt power plant during this Parliament, subject to clear value for money for both consumers and taxpayers and all relevant approvals.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
16th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps she is taking to accelerate the rollout of gigabit-capable broadband across Somerton and Frome.

We are backing Project Gigabit with £5 billion so hard to reach communities are not left out. The constituency of Somerton and Frome falls within Phase 3 (Lot 6) of Project Gigabit. Somerton and Frome’s designation as a ‘Future Phase’ reflects the extensive gigabit delivery now contracted to take place across Devon and Somerset, including the extensive additional delivery now confirmed by Openreach following their announcement of their target to reach 25 million premises by 2026.

The last of Project Gigabit’s Phase 2 procurements start in late 2022 and we expect Phase 3 procurements to follow directly, with all areas under contract as soon as possible. Due to the dynamic nature of the UK telecoms market we will regularly review and respond to opportunities for future procurement wherever possible.

The Connecting Devon and Somerset (CDS) programme is delivering new gigabit-capable connections in Somerton and Frome via contracts with Wessex Internet and Truespeed which were awarded in December 2020.

Somerton and Frome is covered by Wessex Internet’s full fibre network for North and South Barrow, Babcary, Woolston, Queen Camel and Marston Magna. This particular project is nearing completion, with Wessex Internet being ready to connect customers in these areas from October 2021.

If it becomes clear that any premises will miss out from the UK’s broadband upgrade, Project Gigabit will make sure that they are included in its plans.

To accelerate delivery, premises in rural areas may also be in line for funding through the Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme, with up to £210m allocated to the scheme over the next four years to support hard to reach communities. The voucher scheme offers up to £1,500 for homes and £3,500 for businesses to help to cover the costs of installing gigabit broadband to people’s doorsteps when used as part of a group scheme. Home and business owners can check the eligibility of their address and then look up suppliers in their area by going to https://gigabitvoucher.culture.gov.uk/.

Somerton and Frome has made good use of the scheme so far, seeing 698 voucher connections worth £1.1m, with a further 699 vouchers to be connected, totalling over £2.3m.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
19th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether recording studios are eligible for Government support for businesses affected by the covid-19 outbreak.

The Government has provided 100% business rates relief for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses, extensions to the furlough scheme and Self-Employment Income Support Schemes, as well as the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan and Bounce Back Loan Schemes.

The Chancellor has also announced further support for businesses with one-off top-up grants for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses worth up to £9,000 per property, plus a further £594 million discretionary fund to support other impacted businesses. That builds on the £1.1 billion discretionary fund that local authorities in England have already received to help impacted businesses.

The guidance for these additional restrictions grants encourages local authorities to develop discretionary schemes to help those businesses that are perhaps not legally forced to close but are nonetheless severely impacted by the restrictions put in place to control the spread of covid.

On this point, I have received reports that some businesses such as recording and rehearsal studios, which might not be ratepayers and which are not explicitly mentioned in the guidance on these grant schemes, are being deemed ineligible by some local authorities.

To be clear to local authorities and businesses, although the ultimate decision is at the local authority’s discretion, the fund can, and in my opinion should, be used to provide grants to businesses like recording and rehearsal studios. Supporting these businesses is vital to preserve the UK’s talent pipeline, even if they do not sell to consumers directly on a specific premise.

I therefore encourage and expect local authorities to be sympathetic to applications from these types of businesses that have been impacted by covid-19 restrictions but are ineligible for other grant schemes.

11th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what the Government's timescale is for allowing the (a) reopening of residential outdoor learning centres and (b) recommencement of residential school trips as covid-19 restrictions are eased; and what plans he has to provide additional financial support to residential outdoor learning centres.

Schools are advised against all educational visits at this time. The Department is working on advice for schools on the planning and booking of residential visits when it is safe to do so and in line with the Government’s roadmap to recovery, as set out in: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-response-spring-2021/covid-19-response-spring-2021. The advice will be published shortly.

The Government will continue to work closely with local authorities, businesses, business representative organisations, and the financial services sector to monitor the implementation of current support and understand whether there is additional need.

The Government would encourage businesses who are unable to access support, or who are unsure of the support available, to access free tailored advice through the Business Support Helpline, which can be accessed through the Business Support website at: www.gov.uk/business-support-helpline, or through local Growth Hubs in England: www.lepnetwork.net/local-growth-hub-contacts. Businesses in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland can access business support through the devolved Governments.

6th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of funding reductions to the Environment Agency over the last 10 years on the level of phosphates in Somerset.

The water environment faces multiple pressures, including from population growth and climate change. Improving our water environment will be challenging and requires a combined effort of government, industry, businesses and civil society. The Government and its agencies, including the Environment Agency, are taking action. We are committed to our goal of delivering clean and plentiful water, as set out in the 25 Year Environment Plan.

Defra and its agencies received a £1 billion increase in overall funding at the 2020 spending review so we can do more to tackle climate change and protect our environment for future generations. Discussions are underway about the allocation of funding through the upcoming spending review to support delivery of the government's environmental priorities.

In addition, from 2020 to 2025 water companies are investing £7.1 billion to protect and improve the water environment. This includes £600 million of additional funding for the environment enabled through the Government and regulators' Green Recovery scheme.

The Government is aware of the impact of phosphate and other pollutants on the degradation of waterbodies in Somerset and nationally. We are working closely with Natural England and the Environment Agency (EA) to provide the tools to address this problem. I have also been working with MHCLG on the nutrient pollution taskforce, which meets every four to six weeks, to ensure action is coordinated and joined up.

Regulations, including the Farming Rules for Water, are in place to protect the water environment from diffuse agricultural pollution.

We have increased agricultural inspections in Somerset and other affected areas to address phosphate pollution at source by recently allocating the EA an additional £1.2 million to significantly increase the number of inspectors visiting farmers. We have also escalated our efforts to help farmers take voluntary action beyond regulatory requirements to reduce water pollution by expanding the Catchment Sensitive Farming programme - jointly run by Natural England, EA and Defra - to operate across the whole of England.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
6th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the effect on the health of England's rivers of reductions in funding allocated to the Environment Agency since 2010.

The water environment faces multiple pressures, including from population growth and climate change. Improving our water environment will be challenging and requires a combined effort of government, industry, businesses and civil society. The Government and its agencies, including the Environment Agency, are taking action. We are committed to our goal of delivering clean and plentiful water, as set out in the 25 Year Environment Plan.

Defra and its agencies received a £1 billion increase in overall funding at the 2020 spending review so we can do more to tackle climate change and protect our environment for future generations. Discussions are underway about the allocation of funding through the upcoming spending review to support delivery of the government's environmental priorities.

In addition, from 2020 to 2025 water companies are investing £7.1 billion to protect and improve the water environment. This includes £600 million of additional funding for the environment enabled through the Government and regulators' Green Recovery scheme.

The Government is aware of the impact of phosphate and other pollutants on the degradation of waterbodies in Somerset and nationally. We are working closely with Natural England and the Environment Agency (EA) to provide the tools to address this problem. I have also been working with MHCLG on the nutrient pollution taskforce, which meets every four to six weeks, to ensure action is coordinated and joined up.

Regulations, including the Farming Rules for Water, are in place to protect the water environment from diffuse agricultural pollution.

We have increased agricultural inspections in Somerset and other affected areas to address phosphate pollution at source by recently allocating the EA an additional £1.2 million to significantly increase the number of inspectors visiting farmers. We have also escalated our efforts to help farmers take voluntary action beyond regulatory requirements to reduce water pollution by expanding the Catchment Sensitive Farming programme - jointly run by Natural England, EA and Defra - to operate across the whole of England.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
6th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to help ensure that the Environment Agency has sufficient funding and resources to manage phosphate pollution in (a) Somerset and (b) England.

The water environment faces multiple pressures, including from population growth and climate change. Improving our water environment will be challenging and requires a combined effort of government, industry, businesses and civil society. The Government and its agencies, including the Environment Agency, are taking action. We are committed to our goal of delivering clean and plentiful water, as set out in the 25 Year Environment Plan.

Defra and its agencies received a £1 billion increase in overall funding at the 2020 spending review so we can do more to tackle climate change and protect our environment for future generations. Discussions are underway about the allocation of funding through the upcoming spending review to support delivery of the government's environmental priorities.

In addition, from 2020 to 2025 water companies are investing £7.1 billion to protect and improve the water environment. This includes £600 million of additional funding for the environment enabled through the Government and regulators' Green Recovery scheme.

The Government is aware of the impact of phosphate and other pollutants on the degradation of waterbodies in Somerset and nationally. We are working closely with Natural England and the Environment Agency (EA) to provide the tools to address this problem. I have also been working with MHCLG on the nutrient pollution taskforce, which meets every four to six weeks, to ensure action is coordinated and joined up.

Regulations, including the Farming Rules for Water, are in place to protect the water environment from diffuse agricultural pollution.

We have increased agricultural inspections in Somerset and other affected areas to address phosphate pollution at source by recently allocating the EA an additional £1.2 million to significantly increase the number of inspectors visiting farmers. We have also escalated our efforts to help farmers take voluntary action beyond regulatory requirements to reduce water pollution by expanding the Catchment Sensitive Farming programme - jointly run by Natural England, EA and Defra - to operate across the whole of England.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
6th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of the speed of investment in sewage water treatment by Wessex Water to reduce phosphorous discharge.

To address water company derived phosphates, the Environment Agency sets limits based on achieving statutory objectives. Improvements to treatment works or through changes to land use are planned on a 5 year cycle of asset improvements with the water companies. Wessex Water is expecting to invest up to £57m across Somerset to achieve phosphate removal targets by 2024.

In addition to regulatory requirements, the EA is working with Wessex Water to trial nature-based solutions such as wetlands and woodlands as part of the government's green recovery initiative. This involves rewarding landowners and farmers for land use changes that will significantly reduce phosphate releases.

There is more to be done to reduce phosphorous discharge from sewage water treatment. The Strategic Policy Statement for Ofwat, which is currently out for consultation, outlines the government's ambition for Ofwat to drive water companies to be more ambitious in their environmental planning and delivery to contribute towards our environmental goals and enhance the quality of the water environment.

We have also introduced the requirement for at least one legally binding water target in the Environment Bill. This target will complement existing regulations and legislation, moving us closer to achieving our goal of clean and plentiful water set out in Defra's 25 Year Environment Plan.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
6th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent progress the Government's task force on nutrient pollution has made on tackling phosphate pollution, including that which prevents local authorities from granting planning permission.

The task force on nutrient pollution meets every 4 to 6 weeks and brings together Defra, Natural England, Environment Agency and MHCLG to develop strategic solutions to the phosphate and wider nutrient pollution issues. We want to enable much needed development whilst at the same time protecting and enhancing the environment.

Environment Agency and Natural England are working in partnership to understand the causes of pollution within areas, and ways of addressing them. They report back regularly to the task force on progress.

Natural England has already developed several tools which enable local authorities to understand possible mitigations that can be put in place. Natural England works closely with affected local authorities to support them to develop workable solutions.

Planning Advisory Service have also organised a number of virtual “lessons learnt” events on nutrient pollution during July for local authority planners. Natural England, the Environment Agency and Defra attended and shared good practice.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
6th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent enforcement activity the Environment Agency has undertaken to help control the release of phosphates from the agricultural sector in the Somerset Levels and Moors Ramsar catchment area.

We are increasing agricultural inspections in Somerset and other affected areas, which will help address phosphate pollution at source, by recently allocating the Environment Agency (EA) an additional £1.2 million to significantly increase the number of inspectors visiting farmers. We have also escalated our efforts to help farmers take voluntary action beyond regulatory requirements to reduce water pollution by expanding the Catchment Sensitive Farming programme - jointly run by Natural England, EA and Defra - to operate across the whole of England.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
15th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent assessment he has made of the effectiveness of potential measures to reduce phosphorous discharge into the surface water catchment area for the Somerset Levels and Moors Special Protection Area.

There are a range of potential measures that can be deployed to reduce phosphorous discharge in the Somerset Levels and Moors catchment. Natural England and the Environment Agency are working with all the relevant parties, including local planning authorities (LPAs) and Wessex Water as well as landowners and developers to evaluate and implement the various options.

To prevent additional phosphorous loading from new development, mitigation measures such as wetland and woodland creation will need to demonstrate that they will be effective in the long term. It is clear from other catchments facing nutrient loading that they have a key role to play in removing nutrients, enabling nutrient-neutral development. Several mitigation schemes for specific developments have been assessed and approved and the LPAs in Somerset are developing a strategy to support wider rollout of these mitigation schemes. There will be significant further investment of up to £57 million over the next three years by Wessex Water to reduce phosphorous discharge from water treatment works.

In the farming sector there are many joint projects underway and more is likely to be needed. The current approach is to encourage the uptake of voluntary measures to reduce the amount of phosphorous entering the system, including Catchment Sensitive Farming. These include a focus on river and habitat improvements, better farming infrastructure, and enforcement by the Environment Agency where necessary.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
18th Aug 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to protect clinically extremely vulnerable children in mainstream education from covid-19, including children under the age of 12, following the easing of restrictions in schools.

Following the results of recent clinical studies which showed that children and young people face a very low risk of serious illness if they catch COVID-19, the United Kingdom Clinical Review Panel recommended that all children and young people should be removed from the Shielded Patient List. As a result, there are no longer any children or young people under the age of 18 who are considered to be clinically extremely vulnerable to COVID-19.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
20th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to support children with intractable epilepsy until medical cannabis becomes readily available on NHS prescription.

Since January 2020, the Refractory Epilepsy Specialist Clinical Advisory Service has been in place to provide advice and support for doctors in tertiary neuroscience centres, including specialised paediatric neuroscience centres, to optimise the treatment of refractory epilepsy. In September 2019, the cannabis-based medicine Epidyolex was granted a marketing authorisation or licence by the European Medicines Agency, following an assessment of its quality, safety and efficacy. Epidyolex is available on the National Health Service for the treatment of two rare forms of refractory epilepsies in children and adults.

However, guidelines published by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence demonstrate a clear need for more evidence to support routine prescribing and funding decisions for unlicensed cannabis-based products for the treatment of refractory epilepsy and other conditions. To help improve the evidence base, the National Institute for Health Research is working with NHS England and clinicians to develop a programme of two clinical trials into refractory epilepsy.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
7th Jun 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps he plans to take in 2021 to help people affected by the Equitable Life scandal.

The methodology for calculating payments to Equitable Life policyholders was published in 2011 and can be found at: www.gov.uk/government/publications/equitable-life-payment-scheme-design.

There are no plans to reopen the Payment Scheme or review the £1.5 billion funding allocation previously made to it. The Equitable Life Payment Scheme closed to claims in 2015 and further guidance on the status of the Payment Scheme after closure is available at: www.gov.uk/guidance/equitable-life-payment-scheme#closure-of-the-scheme.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
7th Jun 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will publish the detailed calculations, including intermediary steps, used in determining payments under the Equitable Life Payment Scheme.

The methodology for calculating payments to Equitable Life policyholders was published in 2011 and can be found at: www.gov.uk/government/publications/equitable-life-payment-scheme-design.

There are no plans to reopen the Payment Scheme or review the £1.5 billion funding allocation previously made to it. The Equitable Life Payment Scheme closed to claims in 2015 and further guidance on the status of the Payment Scheme after closure is available at: www.gov.uk/guidance/equitable-life-payment-scheme#closure-of-the-scheme.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
6th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of the achievability of housing targets across Somerset in the context of the time taken to process planning applications as a result of nutrient neutrality requirements in the Somerset Levels and Moors Ramsar catchment area.

The National Planning Policy Framework implemented a standard method for calculating local housing need in order to give a clear understanding of the minimum number of homes an area needs to plan for. The method provides a minimum number of homes, not a maximum, and does not provide a target. Authorities are expected to use it as the starting point in the process of planning for new homes. Once this has been established, local authorities will still need to consider the constraints they face locally, which could include nutrient pollution, to assess how many homes can be delivered in their area. If they cannot meet all their need then they should work collaboratively with neighbouring authorities to see if need would best be met elsewhere. At the end of this process the authority will finalise their housing target and this will be tested by planning inspectors for robustness.

The Government is working to tackle nutrients pollution. Together with DEFRA, we have set up a monthly Government task force involving Natural England and the Environment Agency to ensure a clear action plan is in place, focusing on solutions for both permitting housebuilding to resume while not compromising the condition of Protected Sites. Alongside this, we are continuing to support Local Planning Authorities through the work of the Planning Advisory Service.

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
15th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what recent assessment he has made of the effect of nutrient neutrality requirements on levels of approval of planning applications in Somerset.

We do not collect information on the number of planning applications that are delayed or not approved due to the nutrient pollution issue, but this data may be held at a local level by Local Planning Authorities. As such as we have not made a direct assessment of the number of planning applications that have not been approved due to the nutrient pollution issue in the Somerset Levels and Moors Ramsar. The Government is working to tackle nutrients pollution. Together with DEFRA, we have set up a monthly Government task force involving Natural England and the Environment Agency to ensure a clear action plan is in place, focusing on solutions for both permitting housebuilding to resume while not compromising the condition of Protected Sites. Alongside this, we are continuing to support Local Planning Authorities through the work of the Planning Advisory Service.

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)