Sharon Hodgson MP

Working hard for Washington and Sunderland West.

Sharon in and around Washington and Sunderland West - some highlights

On Wednesday 26th February, Sharon received a response from the Government to the petition she presented on 21st January about the gasification plant at Hillthorn Park. 

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You can read Sharon's speech and petition here >

You can read the Government response below:

Observations from Minister for Housing (Christopher Pincher):

The application referred to is now the subject of a planning appeal to the Secretary of State. The appeal inquiry opened on 18th February 2020 and it was attended by approximately 250 people. Before any evidence was heard, the main parties submitted an application to the Inspector to adjourn the inquiry to allow time for confidential commercial negotiations to take place the outcome of which was expected to be the withdrawal of the appeal. The request was endorsed by all objectors and by the MP who was present. The Inspector found the application represented exceptional circumstances and agreed to the request. The inquiry will resume on 18th June 2020 if the negotiations falter and the appeal is not withdrawn before then.

The Planning Inspectorate has received a request from Sharon Hodgson MP that the appeal be recovered by the Secretary of State on the grounds that it conflicts with national policies on important matters and raises significant questions regarding the interpretation of those policies for RDF-based gasification plants. The Secretary of State will consider and respond to this request as soon as possible.

Whilst the Government recognises the opposition to the planning application/appeal, it would not be appropriate to comment further on the eventual decision as to do so could prejudice the Inspector’s, or Secretary of State’s (if the appeal were to be recovered), consideration of the appeal prior to having heard and then considered all the evidence, both for and against the proposal.

You can read Sharon's work on this issue here

Government responds to petition on Gasification Plant

On Wednesday 26th February, Sharon received a response from the Government to the petition she presented on 21st January about the gasification plant at Hillthorn Park.  You can read Sharon's...

The Planning Inspector ruled today (18th February 2020) at the Stadium of Light, that the appeal inquiry for a gasification plant to be built in Hillthorn Park has been adjourned until June.

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Sharon Hodgson MP, who opposes the building of a gasification plant, said at the appeal inquiry:

"This is great news for my constituents who do not want this gasification plant built.

"Over the last three years, constituents have contacted me over concerns about public health, climate change, road congestion and the impact on the local landscape.

"That is why I was pleased to support the calls for an adjournment as this could lead to our ultimate goal: no gasification plant being built at Hillthorn Park. However, any deal that is made must be transparent and put in the public domain for scrutiny.

"This would not have happened today without the community spirit and determination from residents, campaigners and Councillors. The little people have stood up to the big guys and won. Thank you to everyone who has been involved in the campaign to oppose the building of a gasification plant in Washington."

ENDS

You can read Sharon's work on this issue here > Sharon Hodgson MP - Rolton Kilbride, Washington planning appeal

Update on the gasification plant appeal inquiry

The Planning Inspector ruled today (18th February 2020) at the Stadium of Light, that the appeal inquiry for a gasification plant to be built in Hillthorn Park has been adjourned...

The appeal for a planning application for a gasification plant to be built at Hillthorn Park, Washington begins on Tuesday 18th February at 10am at the Stadium of Light, Montgomery Suite.  It will continue for 8 days, with an evening meeting on Monday 24th February.

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Sharon opposes the planning application and will be speaking at the appeal meeting on Tuesday 18th February to set out the concerns of her constituents.

We need to show the Planning Inspector that the people of Washington and Sunderland West do not want this gasification plant.

Crowds will therefore be gathering from 9:30am on Tuesday 18th February at the main car park (Red Car Park) at the Stadium of Light to rally against the planning application.

If you are able to come and show your opposition, please do so.  The more people the better.

You can read Sharon’s work on this issue here.

Gasification Plant Appeal and Protest

The appeal for a planning application for a gasification plant to be built at Hillthorn Park, Washington begins on Tuesday 18th February at 10am at the Stadium of Light, Montgomery...

You can read Sharon's latest Echo column below or on the Sunderland Echo website

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A planning application for a waste gasification plant to be built at Hillthorn Park in Washington has been ongoing for almost three years.

Local residents, campaigners, Cross-Party Councillors and I oppose the building of this plant and have been relentless in our campaigning against the planning application.

Last July, the application was rejected by local Councillors on the Planning and Highways Committee. But our journey did not stop there.

The applicants, Rolton Kilbride, have appealed that decision which will now be heard by the Planning Inspectorate in an 8-day inquiry starting next week, on Tuesday 18th February at the Stadium of Light.

Campaigners and I will be at the appeal hearing, to show our intense opposition to the planning application.

Last week, I held a public meeting in Washington to speak to residents about the application and listen to their concerns.

Over 100 people attended and shared their worries with me including public health issues, climate change challenges, the impact on our local landscape and house prices.

I have raised these issues several times in Parliament, most recently this week in a Westminster Hall debate and directly to the Prime Minister during Prime Minister’s Question Time.

In my 15 years as an MP, no issue has galvanised so many people in opposition to an issue like this; approximately 10,800 people have signed petitions opposing the gasification plant and I have been contacted by hundreds of constituents about it.

What this campaign has shown me is that there is power in our people working together.

I do not know what the Planning Inspector will decide following the appeal hearing; they are not elected or political and as an MP I do not have any further influence over them than anyone else.

But what I do know is that when we all come together united in one mission, we can succeed in building a people-powered campaign that demonstrates the community spirit and determination of our local area.

We are united in opposing this proposed gasification plant and I will continue to do all that I can to represent my constituents on this issue.

I will be holding a public meeting throughout my constituency each month covering various issues. For more information, please visit my website: http://www.sharonhodgson.org/tags/public_meeting or contact my office: Sharon.hodgson.mp@parliament.uk

Sunderland Echo website

ECHO COLUMN: There's power in our people working together

You can read Sharon's latest Echo column below or on the Sunderland Echo website A planning application for a waste gasification plant to be built at Hillthorn Park in Washington...

Sharon Hodgson MP's report - News from Westminster - Jan-Feb 2020 number 124

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Click on the picture above to read Sharon Hodgson MP's report

Sharon Hodgson MP's report - Jan-Feb 2020 number 124

Sharon Hodgson MP's report - News from Westminster - Jan-Feb 2020 number 124 Click on the picture above to read Sharon Hodgson MP's report Read more

The below information has been provided by UKWIN (UK Without Incineration Network) ahead of Sharon's Westminster Hall debate on waste incineration facilities on Tuesday 11th February.

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- https://ukwin.org.uk/oppose-incineration/ - UKWIN's arguments against incineration

- https://ukwin.org.uk/facts/ - Recent incineration-related statistics, including how in Wales 74.5% of residual C&I waste was potentially recyclable (and in many areas across the UK more than half of what is in the residual municipal waste stream is recyclable), indicating we need to be investing in education and better recycling services rather than yet more incineration capacity

- https://ukwin.org.uk/quotes/ - Quotes about incineration, including from EFRACOM, the Government and the National Infrastructure Commission

https://ukwin.org.uk/2020/01/30/mps-use-westminster-hall-debate-to-raise-concerns-about-incineration/ - UKWIN's account of what was said at the Westminster Hall debate on commercial & industrial waste on 28th January 2020

As before, you should be able to watch the debates live via https://parliamentlive.tv/ and UKWIN will post an account of the debate once the official transcript has been released.

You can read Sharon's work on opposing the gasification plant at Hillthorn Park here.

Constituents are invited to join Sharon on Saturday 8th February at The Hopespring Centre, NE37 3BD, between 10:30-12:30, to discuss the planning application.  More details are available here.

Arguments against the gasification plant and getting involved

The below information has been provided by UKWIN (UK Without Incineration Network) ahead of Sharon's Westminster Hall debate on waste incineration facilities on Tuesday 11th February. - https://ukwin.org.uk/oppose-incineration/ - UKWIN's arguments against... Read more

Sharon Hodgson, Member of Parliament for Washington and Sunderland West and Shadow Minister for Public Health, is set to hold the first of a series of public meetings that will take place in every area of the constituency.

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These meetings will be open for all constituents to attend and focus on local issues in the area in which they take place. The first meeting will take place at The Hopespring Centre (Formerly the Top Club) Manor Road, Washington, NE37 3BD on Saturday the 8th of February at 10.30am – 12.30pm and will focus on the planning application for a proposed gasification plant at Hillthorn Park, in Washington.

Sharon said:

‘’I was delighted to be re-elected as the Member of Parliament for Washington and Sunderland West, and I am proud of my record in standing up for all of my constituents.

‘’Whether it’s campaigning against the closure of Urgent Care Centres, or against the proposed Gasification plant in Washington – I will always do everything in my power to make their voices heard.”

Sharon’s constituents will be able to find details of upcoming meetings on her website, which will all be available as and when organised. 

Ends

Notes to editors:

·         All of Sharon’s public meetings will be open to all constituents.

Constituents will need to RSVP in advance of the meeting by emailing:
hodgsons@parliament.uk

·         If constituents have issues that they would like a specific future meeting to focus on, then they can make suggestions by contacting Sharon’s office on: hodgsons@parliament.uk

 

Sharon embarks on a series of public meetings in Washington and Sunderland West

Sharon Hodgson, Member of Parliament for Washington and Sunderland West and Shadow Minister for Public Health, is set to hold the first of a series of public meetings that will...

You can read Sharon's latest Echo column below or on the Sunderland Echo website

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I would like to once again thank voters in Washington and Sunderland West for re-electing me in the December General Election.

Whilst the national election result was not as I hoped, I remain as committed as ever to delivering for all of my constituents.

That means standing up for our local area and everyone who lives here.

One of my first appearances in the new Parliament was this week, when I presented a petition to the House of Commons signed by constituents who oppose the building of a gasification plant in Hillthorn Park.

Like thousands of my constituents, I am opposed to the building of this plant in our area.

The main reasons for my opposition to the plant are threefold:

1) The location of the proposed plant is close to houses and schools. It is these communities who will bear the brunt of increased traffic and associated pollution, and who are most at risk should anything go wrong with the plant.

2) The applicants have failed to satisfy any questions from myself and campaigners. We still do not know what technology will be used by the plant if building goes ahead, for example.

3) The proposed plant could be expected to release millions of tonnes of CO2 during the anticipated lifetime of the facility. This will undoubtedly have a negative impact on our environment and climate change.

As I said at the Planning and Highways Committee meeting in July, where the application was rejected, my constituents should not be used as guinea pigs; the health and lives of my constituents should not be gambled with.

Although the planning application was rejected in July by the Planning and Highways Committee, the application is now up for appeal, which will be held for 8 days from 10am on Tuesday 18th February at the Stadium of Light’s Montgomery Suite.

Because so many of my constituents have expressed concern about the planning application, I have written to the Planning Inspectorate and the National Planning Casework Unit to request that the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government recovers the appeal, which if approved, will give the Secretary of State the final say on the application.

I will continue to work with constituents, campaigners and local councillors to oppose this plant and raise this issue in Parliament.

If you would like to get in touch with me about this issue, or any other concerns, please do not hesitate to get in touch with my office on Sharon.hodgson.mp@parliament.uk. Please provide your full postal address.

Sunderland Echo Website

ECHO COLUMN: The health and lives of my constituents should not be gambled with

You can read Sharon's latest Echo column below or on the Sunderland Echo website I would like to once again thank voters in Washington and Sunderland West for re-electing me...

Sharon Hodgson MP's report - Dec-Jan 2020 number 123

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Click on the picture above to read Sharon Hodgson MP's report - News from Westminster - Dec-Jan 2020 number 123

Sharon Hodgson MP's report - Dec-Jan 2020 number 123

Sharon Hodgson MP's report - Dec-Jan 2020 number 123 Click on the picture above to read Sharon Hodgson MP's report - News from Westminster - Dec-Jan 2020 number 123 Read more

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Donate to Sharon's campaign

Click on the picture link below to donate to Sharon Hodgson's campaign. The link above will take you to the Labour Party's secure donation page.Unlike the Tory Party, Labour don't... Read more

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