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BENWELL AND SCOTSWOOD WARD

Benwell and Scotswood Ward Liberal Democrats would be pleased to hear from any resident who has a problem, a query or would like to help the Lib Dems in the ward. Please get in touch with us via info@newcastle-libdems.org.uk, or register your support using the 'Register/Support' link on the left.

  • Robin Ashby, Council May 21
    Article: Jan 6, 2022

    Newcastle's Liberal Democrats are backing their party's proposals for a "Robin Hood" tax on energy giants to support families with heating bills - which could bring £20 million to well over 60,000 people in the city

    The Liberal Democrats are pressing the Secretary of State for Energy Kwasi Kwarteng to backs the party's call for a "Robin Hood" tax on the super-profits being made by oil and gas firms, to help local families who are facing soaring energy costs.

  • Cllr Christine Morrissey 2019
    Article: Jan 5, 2022

    The Liberal Democrats have called for a £30 catch-up voucher for every day missed by primary and secondary school students for covid-related absence.

    At a rate of covid-related absence of 120,724 a week, as was seen in the most recent data, this scheme would cost £3.6 million a week - just over 1% of the Government's initial National Tutoring Programme catch-up fund.

    The voucher would be given to the parents of all pupils in state-funded schools to help cope with the difficulties of remote learning. It comes as the Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi has said that it could be impossible to avoid the return of remote learning as the Omicron variant causes havoc for teachers, pupils and parents on the day schools return.

    Studies from the Education Policy Institute have shown that the lost lifetime earnings across a million school children in the UK from lost learning during the pandemic could amount to £46,000 each.

    Their research also shows that lost lifetime earnings across the 10 million school children in the UK from lost learning during the pandemic could impact the economy by some £463bn in a worst case scenario.

    The Newcastle Liberal Democrats Education Spokesperson Cllr Christine has slammed the government as incompetent for their failure to put a plan in place as schools return, and is proposing a catch-up voucher scheme for every pupil who cannot attend school this term due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

    The vouchers could be spent on catch-up tutoring to make up for lost learning, with schools being able to advise parents on what would most benefit their children. "Our proposal recognises parental choice of what is best for their child/ren, " said Cllr Morrissey

    "The Omicron variant is without doubt going to wreak havoc as our schools return this week and the Government has left schools woefully underprepared to deal with the chaos this will cause pupils, parents and teachers alike.

    "No child should be left behind as we enter a time of unprecedented staff absences and case rates. Funding catch-up vouchers would empower parents to restore their children's education, which the Conservatives have demonstrated time and again is not their priority.

    "From a botched catch-up package to a complete failure on getting air purifiers into schools, the Government must act radically so children are given the opportunity to catch up on the education they are missing due to the Conservatives' incompetence."

    Research from the Education Policy Institute shows:

    • Based on an estimated range of learning loss, this would result in total lost lifetime earnings of between 1 and 3%. In a central modelling scenario, this is likely to be at least £16,000 lost in earnings per pupil, but could range from £8,000 to £46,000 per pupil, depending on the extent of learning loss.

    • These earnings losses would generate a total long-run cost of between £78bn and £463bn across the 10 million children in the education system in England. This range is likely to be a highly conservative estimate of the true long-run costs of lost learning.

  • Cllr Robin Ashby
    Article: Dec 15, 2021

    A perfect storm is facing families and businesses as inflationary price rises have hit 5.1% - the highest rate of change in a decade, and up from 4.2 % only a couple of months ago.

    "Families and businesses are facing the perfect storm this winter as inflation soars and Covid surges, " says Cllr Robin Ashby, who speaks for Newcastle Liberal Democrats on employment, development and business matters .

  • Covid jabs - Newcastle cllrs
    Article: Dec 15, 2021

    The North East is one of the leading regions for booster jabs. Two Liberal Democrats Councillors who had theirs recently have urged others to follow suit to protect us all as Christmas approaches.

    Councillor Ali Avaei, who is a community pharmacist who runs a Covid vaccination clinic on Sundays at Adelaide Terrace in Benwell, administered one to his colleague Cllr Helen Laverick (Both pictured here). He said " We have enough supplies for appointments and walk-ins to take us through the New Year. So I urge all adults to get their jabs - including those who haven't yet had first or second ones. Our main line of defence against Covid and variants is a fully vaccinated and boosted population. The data shows that the vaccines are helpful against all variants - even if you catch covid, it's likely to be a lot less severe and less of a burden on the NHS if you've had all 3 shots."

  • Dr Wendy Taylor
    Article: Dec 13, 2021

    Last night the Prime Minister announced on TV - repeated in the headlines of national newspapers - that every adult could have the booster jab by the end of the month.

    During today the Department of Health rowed back on the Prime Minister's promise for everyone to 'get their booster before the New Year',

  • Robin Ashby
    Article: Dec 10, 2021

    Ahead of new Covid restrictions coming into effect, Liberal Democrats in Newcastle have backed their MPs' call for an emergency hospitality summit to save businesses on the brink.

    With some restaurants already losing half their Christmas bookings, and footfall levels in many towns and cities due to drop off, there is an urgent need for action.

  • Daisy Cooper
    Article: Dec 9, 2021

    Eight days ago, the Liberal Democrats urged the government to bring back official guidance to work from home where possible, to help keep cases of the Omicron variant down ahead of Christmas. As usual, the Government has waited as new variant cases rise aboove 50,000 a day before acting.


    The government's SAGE committee has previously said that working from home would have the biggest individual impact on reducing transmission of the virus, but ministers ruled it out until late yesterday.

  • Ed Davey MP (Liberal Democrats)
    Article: Dec 9, 2021

    Liberal Democrats Leader Ed Davey has called for the Cabinet Office inquiry to be extended into all parties that took place in Number 10 last year, along with any that took place in other government departments.


    It comes after Boris Johnson confirmed at a press conference yesterday that he has only asked Cabinet Secretary Simon Case to look into the party that took place on December 18 last year, not an earlier gathering that the prime minister allegedly attended on November 27.

  • Alistair Carmichael with whisky barrels
    Article: Dec 9, 2021

    The Liberal Democrats have slammed Boris Johnson's "rank hypocrisy" on the Number 10 Christmas party, after it emerged over 70,000 people have been fined by police for gatherings banned under lockdown rules.

    Figures from the National Police Chiefs' Council reveal 74,354 Fixed Penalty Notices were handed out for illegal gatherings under the various Covid regulations between March 2019 and the end of restrictions in July 2021. These were typically fines of £200, meaning people would have been fined around £15 million for holding illegal gatherings during the pandemic.

  • Small Business Saturday 2021
    Article: Dec 4, 2021

    To mark Small Business Saturday, Liberal Democrats have been out on Gosforth High Street - and have been highlighting some of the many great local businesses in the City (seen here are councillors representing 3 of the 4 wards covering Gosforth.)

    Robin Ashby, who speaks for Newcastle LIberal Democrats on business matters, said "If we don't cherish our local businesses - be they in the centre of town, or in the district centres like Chillingham Road, Wansbeck Road or Brunton Park - they are at risk after the gruelling trading conditions of the pandemic, and the switch to online retailing. And once they've gone, they've gone.