GovWire

Recent News

Offline Access

Use this page when you have no internet access. Ensure that this page loads fully before going offline.

TUESDAY, 19 JUNE 2018  |  ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON NOVEL FOODS PROCESSES

A year on from the Finsbury Park terrorist attack the Home Secretary attended a community event at Islington Town Hall.

The Home Secretary attended a commemoration event in Islington to mark the first anniversary of the Finsbury Park terrorist attack this morning.

He joined local community leaders, other politicians, and the family of Makram Ali, who was killed in the attack, to pay tribute to him and all those affected.

Speaking after the memorial, the Home Secretary Sajid Javid said:

Today we remember the life of Makram Ali and the people whose lives were changed forever by the Finsbury Park attack.

The tragedy is a reminder of the complicated nature of the threat we face, including from far-right extremism.

In the days after the attack I visited the scene and was struck by the bravery, unity and defiance of the local community. This strength has not waned and embodies how the people of this country will not allow terrorists to undermine our way of life.

On the streets of Finsbury Park I promised mourners that we would do everything we could to confront all forms of terrorism – and this determination remains unwavering.

Earlier this month, the government published its strengthened counter-terrorism strategy which explained the increasing threat presented by the extreme right wing and the actions the government is taking to combat all forms of terrorism.

For those that have been affected by terrorism, an anniversary can be particularly upsetting. Information on the different kinds of practical and emotional support available, including peer support networks and advice about talking to children has been published on

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  |  ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON NOVEL FOODS PROCESSES

David Bunting has been appointed following Gill Aitken’s decision to leave HMRC to take up a new role as Registrar at the University of Oxford.

David, currently working in the Cross-Government Border Delivery Group, will take up the role from 1 July, becoming Director General of the Solicitor’s Office and Legal Services Group and joining the department’s Executive Committee, reporting to our Chief Executive Jon Thompson.

There will be an open recruitment process in the coming months to fill the role permanently.

David has more than 20 years’ legal experience. He trained in the Inland Revenue and has worked extensively on tax matters, leading large HMRC legal teams dealing with tax policy and legislation in relation to UK business and environmental taxes including Corporation Tax, VAT, Customs and Excise duties, oil and gas taxation, Landfill Tax, Climate Change Levy and betting and gaming duties.

He has also led HMRC’s litigation activity, overseeing about 10,000 cases at any one time involving billions in revenues. He was promoted into the Senior Civil Service in 2008 and in 2012 became a legal director at HMRC.

In 2017 David moved to the Border Delivery Group led by Karen Wheeler, a cross-UK government team focusing on the operational and practical impacts that EU exit may have on the UK’s border.

He lives in Bristol and is married with two sons.

We will confirm any

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  |  ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON NOVEL FOODS PROCESSES

A summary of results from surveillance work carried out by the VMD's pharmacovigilance team concerning reported adverse events.

A Veterinary Medicines Pharmacovigilance Annual Review 2016: Summary (PDF, 262KB, 6 pages) of the key results from the Veterinary Medicines Pharmacovigilance Annual Review 2016.

The annual review summarises the 6559 UK adverse events in animals, humans and the environment after use of veterinary medicines and other products reported to VMD in 2016.

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  |  ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON NOVEL FOODS PROCESSES

The CMA notes the announcement that Horizon Global Corporation has abandoned its intended purchase of Brink International B.V.

The abandonment of the transaction follows a CMA phase 1 investigation finding that the merger, between two of the largest towbar companies in Europe, could damage competition in the UK.

The CMA’s investigation found that the companies together control a large share of all towbar supply to car manufacturers operating throughout the UK and Europe.

During its investigation, the CMA worked closely with the German competition authority, the Bundeskartellamt, which was conducting its own investigation into whether the merger could damage competition in Germany.

They exchanged information and analysis on the competition issues that each were investigating, and ultimately reached a similar view about the harmful impact that the transaction could have on towbar supply to car manufacturers within Europe. The two authorities also held discussions on the feasibility of possible remedies to address the concerns that each had identified.

While at this stage of the UK investigation the companies had the option to address the CMA’s concerns, or proceed to a more in-depth ‘phase 2’ investigation, they have now agreed to abandon the transaction.

More information can be found on the Horizon Glo

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  |  ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON NOVEL FOODS PROCESSES

Education experts from around the world meet at first Textbook Summit.

Minister for School Standards Nick Gibb hosted the first International Textbook Summit in London on Thursday 14 June, bringing together curriculum experts and teachers to discuss how to use textbooks to improve education for every child and help tackle teacher workload.

The Minister welcomed government representatives and international experts from 15 nations including Finland, Singapore and Germany to the Royal Society in London to share the latest international evidence on textbooks and explore ways of emulating the success of textbook based teaching programmes, such as Teaching for Mastery.

Evidence suggests textbooks save teachers around 18 minutes a day and high performing countries, including those in the Far East, have a strong focus on textbooks to help raise education standards.

The international symposium builds on the recent launch of a £7.7 million curriculum fund to support the development of high quality resources. These resources will also help teachers deliver the government’s new curriculum while freeing them up to focus on what really matters in the classroom.

School Standards Minister Nick Gibb said:

Textbooks support teachers to translate the vision of a curriculum into carefully sequenced and well-resourced lessons, reducing teacher workload and increasing the quality of classroom teaching. That’s why we are encouraging the creation of these resources through our £7.7 million curriculum fund.

It was an honour to host world-leading experts for this first ever summit and to discuss how we can use these resources to improve education for every child, building on the 1.9 million more children now in good or outstanding schools than in 2010 thanks to the hard work of teachers and our reforms.

Tim Oates CBE from Cambridge Assessment said:

The Summit developed an extraordinary consensus about the value and function of textbooks; the discussion of what ‘quality’ means will help with both new generations of textbooks and allied digital resources.

The Department will work with Cambridge Assessment and Royal Society to publish the key messages and discussion points from the day. The evidence of best practice and the discussions at the summit will help to shape the development of resources as part of the curriculum fund. It will also inform the development of the department’s teacher recruitment and retention strategy which is due to be published later this year.

The Education Secretary has been clear that there are no great schools without great teachers and his top priority is to make sure teaching remains an attractive and fulfilling profession – removing unnecessary workload is at the heart of this commitment.

Also speaking at the event were: Tim Oates CBE, Cambridge Assessment; Professor Bill Schmidt, Michigan State University; Professor Dr Eckhardt Fuchs, Georg Eckert Institute for International Textbook Research; Lee Fei Chen, Times Publishing Limited; Rickard Vinde, Swedish Association of Educational Publishers; Dr Nuno Crato, University of Lisbon; Debbie Morgan, National Centre for the Excellence in Teaching Mathematics; and Professor Xingfeng Huang, Shanghai Normal University.

Read Nick Gibb’s full speech

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  |  ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON NOVEL FOODS PROCESSES

NDA subsidiary Direct Rail Services (DRS) stormed to the rescue when the weekend’s weather chaos left a Virgin Pendolino stranded between Carlisle and Penrith.

The DRS Thunderbird locomotive rescued passengers, including some of its own employees, when the Pendolino’s journey was delayed by a fallen tree in the wake of Storm Hector.

DRS, based in Carlisle, was proud to support Virgin Trains and help to keep the network moving during the adverse conditions which disrupted the UK rail network, particularly the West Coast Mainline.

Meanwhile, Sellafield’s Fire and Rescue teams were among those deployed from across Cumbria to tackle a

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  |  ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON NOVEL FOODS PROCESSES

20 on-site hubs to train more people to help deliver 300,000 new homes a year by the mid-2020s

A multi-million pound fund to help tackle the construction skills shortage has been launched by the Skills Minister Anne Milton today (18 June).

With 158,000 new construction jobs expected to be created in the UK over the next five years, the £22million Construction Skills Fund will bring training to construction sites - allowing learners to apply their knowledge in a real-world environment.

This will help meet the needs of employers and tackle the construction skills shortage, while also supporting those who want to join the industry, particularly adult learners.

The 18-month scheme is funded by the Department for Education and will be administered by the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB).

Skills Minister Anne Milton said:

For our economy to thrive we need everyone, regardless of their age or background, to be able to get the training and the skills they need to make the most of the opportunities that lie ahead.

The Government has committed to building 300,000 new homes a year by the mid-2020s and we want to make sure that we are investing in the UK skills base to deliver this.

A career in construction offers the chance for many people to establish and grow their own business.

On-site training will be hugely beneficial for employers and trainees, as it will help bridge the gap between training and working in the industry, meaning trainees are site-ready sooner.

Minister of State for Housing Dominic Raab said:

A construction workforce with new and innovative skills is essential to building a housing market fit for the future.

We have already invested £1bn to develop modern approaches in the industry and the Construction Skills Fund will teach builders the skills they need to deliver 300,000 new homes a year by the mid-2020s.

The fund forms a vital part of the Government’s modern Industrial Strategy – a long-term plan to build a Britain fit for the future by helping businesses create jobs in every part of the UK.

It underlines the Government’s commitment to improving education standards for everyone, so they can gain the skills they need to succeed and can secure good jobs.

The fund aims to support:

  • 20 on-site training hubs
  • Work experience and placements for people working to join the industry
  • Entry pathways for those currently unemployed
  • Pathways for career switchers.

CITB is now calling on employers, housing associations and other interested bodies such as LEPs and local authorities to submit expressions of interest. These can be from both existing and prospective on-site learning hubs.

The funding will only support on-site training provision, and access to live construction projects is essential to qualify.

Steve Radley, Policy Director at CITB, said:

The Construction Skills Fund is a milestone scheme for the sector and provides a significant investment in skills and training. It will help attract new talent and bridge the gap between training and working in the industry.

Having training on or near to major projects will reveal what an exciting sector this can be, while also putting new talent in the shop window.

We want all interested organisations to submit Expressions of Interest that are innovative, collaborative and with training at their heart. We will support applicants through the process and provide expert guidance to apply to the fund.

We are pleased to help deliver this major new project and we are confident that, with industry support, it can help meet construc

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  |  NORTHERN IRELAND EXECUTIVE

The Official Receiver provides an update on employment within the Carillion group in liquidation.

A spokesperson for the Official Receiver said:

Secure ongoing employment has been confirmed for a further 18 workers and regrettably two staff will be leaving the business this week.

We continue to discuss with potential purchasers Carillion’s remaining contracts and I am keeping staff, elected employee representatives and unions informed as these arrangements are confirmed.

Further information:

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  |  ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON NOVEL FOODS PROCESSES

Councils across England are being urged to take up a congestion-busting scheme that reduces disruption caused by roadworks.

An evaluation report, by Ecorys, published today (June 18 2018) by the Department for Transport shows permit schemes – where companies apply to highways authorities to carry out works – help reduce the length of disruption from roadworks by more than 3 days. It also showed these scheme cut the number of overrunning roadworks.

Permit schemes cover works on all local roads and can be complemented by lane rental, where utility companies are charged daily for digging up the busiest roads at peak times. Lane rental guidance will be issued later this year.

Around 65% of authorities now have in place these schemes, which are making a real difference. The remaining 35% are being asked to introduce them so that their local communities can benefit from this positive impact on journeys.

Roads Minister Jesse Norman said:

Roadworks are the bane of drivers’ lives, causing delays and costing the UK economy £4.3 billion a year.

Permit schemes are proven to reduce the length of roadworks, allowing motorists to have fewer disrupted journeys and reducing the burden on businesses.

More councils should look at adopting permit schemes, as well as lane rental schemes in due course, to help drivers get to work and visit friends and family quickly and safely.

Permit schemes, which were introduced in 2010, give councils more control over roadworks. Local authorities can also add conditions to the roadworks, such as the time when works can start and end, limits on the number of days they can be in place and where equipment should be stored, to ensure disruption is kept to a minimum. Councils may charge a fee to cover the administration costs of permits.

This follows the announcement of a national rollout of lane rental schemes later this year which will see companies charged up to £2,500 a day to carry out works on busy roads. Pilot lane rental schemes in London and Kent have seen congestion on the busiest roads drop, saving drivers time and boosting the economy.

It also comes after Transport Secretary called on companies to carry out works on pavements, where possible, instead of under roads to avoid any disruption to motorists. More details will be revealed in due course.

Roads media enquiries

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  |  ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON NOVEL FOODS PROCESSES

New University Technical College to create 750 new school places in Doncaster to meet local demand for world-class engineering and design skills.

SUNDAY, 17 JUNE 2018  |  ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON NOVEL FOODS PROCESSES

Scotland is to get a £2 billion funding boost from the UK Government, as a result of more cash going to the NHS in England.

Public services in Scotland are to get a £2 billion funding boost from the UK Government. The cash windfall follows the Prime Minister’s announcement today that, in the NHS’s 70th year, she is investing an extra £20 billion a year in health services in England (by 2023-24, compared to today).

The announcement means the Scottish Government will receive additional Barnett funding worth £2 billion a year in real terms by 2023/24. It will be up to Holyrood how this money is used, but the Scottish Secretary has urged Scottish ministers to invest the windfall in the NHS in Scotland.

David Mundell said:

As a result of the Prime Minister’s significant new investment in the NHS, Scotland will get a £2 billion funding boost from the UK Government by 2023-24. In the NHS’s 70th year, I urge the Scottish Government to invest this extra money in improving health services in Scotland. Our NHS is hugely valued by people in Scotland, but we have seen services under severe strain in recent years. This additional UK Government investment in Scotland has the potential to make a real difference for people in Scotland.

The extra funding announced today comes on top of changes to visas to allow

SUNDAY, 17 JUNE 2018  |  ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON NOVEL FOODS PROCESSES

The Home Secretary Sajid Javid has announced £1.38 million to strengthen the police’s response to violent and gang-related online content.

Funding from the government’s £40 million Serious Violence Strategy will be used to create a 20-strong team of police staff and officers tasked with disrupting and removing overt and covert gang-related online content.

The social media hub will proactively flag illegal and harmful online content for social media companies to take down. Hosted by the Metropolitan Police, the new capability will also prevent violence on our streets by identifying gang-related messages generating the most risk and violence.

The move follows the Serious Violence Taskforce chaired by the Home Secretary urging social media companies to do more to take down these videos. The Home Secretary invited representatives from Facebook and Google to Monday’s meeting to explain the preventative action they are already taking against gang material hosted on their platforms.

Home Secretary Sajid Javid said:

Street gangs are increasingly using social media as a platform to incite violence, taunt each other and promote crime.

This is a major concern and I want companies such as Facebook and Google to do more.

We are taking urgent action and the new social media hub will improve the police’s ability to identify and remove this dangerous content.

Duncan Ball, Deputy Assistant Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service and National Policing lead for Gangs said:

Police forces across the country are committed to doing everything we can to tackle violent crime and the impact that it has on our communities. Through this funding we can develop a team that is a centre of expertise and excellence that will target violent gangs and those plotting and encouraging violence online.

By working together with social media companies we will ensure that online material that glamourises murder, lures young people into a dangerous, violent life of crime and encourages violence is quickly dealt with to cut off this outlet for gangs and criminals.

Looking to the future we aim to develop a world class capability that will tackle the type of dangerous social media activity that promotes or encourages serious violence.

The new partnership is being built by the Home Office with the Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime, online content companies, community based charities and the police.

It is already an offence to incite, assist, or encourage violence online and the Home Office is focused towards building on the relationships made with social media providers to identify where

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  | 

The Independent Chief Inspector calls for evidence on the inspection into the Home Office's approach to charging for its services.

The Independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration has begun work on an inspection of the Home Office’s charging for services in respect of its asylum, immigration, nationality and customs functions.

The inspection will look at the rationale and authority for particular charges, including the amounts charged.

It will also look at whether the Home Office is providing the services in question efficiently and effectively, including meeting agreed service levels where these exist, and at the means of redress where individuals are dissatisfied with the service they have received.

Where the charged service is a premium option and a free service exists, the inspection will look at the relationship between the two, including how both are resourced and managed.

The Independent Chief Inspector will be seeking inputs from the ICIBI’s regular stakeholders, but would also like to encourage contributions from anyone with first-hand knowledge or experience of Home Office charging for services.

Please submit your evidence by 16 July 2018.

Please email the Chief Inspector: chiefinspector@icinspector.gsi.gov.uk

or write to:

ICIBI
5th Floor
Globe House
89

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  | 

The Medicines Manufacturing Innovation Centre (MMIC) in Renfrewshire will offer businesses support to transform processes and technologies.

A new centre to help companies develop processes and technologies for manufacturing medicines could benefit future generations by helping new medicines reach patients safely and quickly.

By supporting both start-ups and multinational pharmaceutical companies it’s hoped that the speed in which new medicines reach the market will increase significantly.

It is one of the biggest health challenges facing society and aligns with the leading-edge healthcare challenge – part of the government’s modern Industrial Strategy. The project will receive £13 million from the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund. This funding is provided by UK Research and Innovation, through Innovate UK.

The rest of the funding for the £56 million centre will be provided by Scottish Enterprise, alongside private industry support from AstraZeneca and GSK.

Global market

It is hoped that the new investment into UK medicines manufacturing will help the country access a global market said to be worth £98 billion.

The MMIC is intended to help the UK lead the world in the development of new technologies and processes in small molecule pharmaceutical and fine chemical manufacturing. This is how the majority of medicines are currently made and the centre is intended to boost capabilities in these forms of manufacturing medicines.

UK Minster, Lord Duncan, said:

This is great news for the UK’s world-leading Life Sciences sector, and especially important for Scotland in re-enforcing its global reputation as a centre for cutting edge scientific endeavour. We need more new medicines to tackle deadly diseases more quickly, and we want to see more of their research and manufacture done here in the UK, bringing highly skilled jobs and greater prosperity with it.

Paul Wheelhouse, Scottish Government Minister for Business, Innovation and Energy added:

This will help to make Scotland the location of choice for the life sciences community and help us grow the industry’s contribution to the Scottish Economy by 90%, to £8 billion by 2025.

The centre will also be well placed to support new business start-ups and spin-outs and enable established life and chemical science companies to profit from innovation.

Centre expectations

The MMIC is expected to lead to £80 million in research and development investment by 2028 and create 80 jobs directly by 2023, with 90 created or retained by companies involved in the design and building of the centre.

A significant number of jobs are also expected to arise through indirect employment from start-ups, SMEs and larger companies that benefit from the work done at the MMIC.

Ian Campbell, Innovate UK Executive Chair, said:

UK Research and Innovation is leading the charge to bring the UK government’s modern Industrial Strategy to life – translating research into commercial success, building on our industrial strengths and sustaining economic prosperity across our communities.

The new MMIC promises to enhance Scotland’s reputation as a trusted centre for high value manufacturing, while transforming the UK’s standing within the global pharmaceutical industry.

Partnership

The proposal for the centre has been developed with significant industry input. The project was led by the Medicines Manufacturing Industry Partnership (MMIP), which consists of a number of pharmaceutical companies including GSK and AstraZeneca.

The MMIP, alongside the Centre for Process Innovation (CPI) in partnership with the Centre for Continuous Manufacturing and Crystallisation (CMAC) led by the University of Strathclyde, will run the centre.

Andy Evans, Chair of the MMIP and Head of Macclesfield Site for AstraZeneca said:

Our ambition is for patients worldwide to benefit from the accelerated adoption of emerging and novel medicine manufacturing technologies developed in the UK.

Chair of the Scottish Life Sciences Industry Leadership Group, and Vice President, Head of Global Manufacturing and Supply Strategy for GSK, Dr Dave Tudor, said:

Industry, government, academia and others need to work together to secure an internationally competitive leadership position for the UK in life sciences for the long-term.

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  | 

The CMA has found Rentokil’s purchase of Cannon Hygiene may lead to higher prices and lower quality for businesses buying products and services for washrooms.

Rentokil, which trades as Initial for these services, and Cannon are 2 of the 3 largest specialist providers of products and services found in washrooms across the UK. These firms install and maintain equipment such as air sanitisers, feminine hygiene units, nappy bins and soap dispensers, in all types of commercial, industrial and public buildings.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has found that, if the merger goes ahead, the companies could face very limited competition from other suppliers of washroom products and services.

Rentokil and Cannon have until 25 June to offer a solution to the CMA’s concerns, otherwise the merger will be referred for a more in-depth (phase 2) investigation.

More information can be found on the

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  | 

Sam Gyimah appears as an avatar in new online content aimed to inform audiences about developments in science, research and innovation

Science Minister Sam Gyimah will today (Monday 18 June) appear as an avatar in a first for the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. The new online tool has been developed to promote the work that the government is doing to invest in science, research and development as part of the modern Industrial Strategy.

The animation sees Sam Gyimah as an avatar in a lab coat discussing case studies of projects happening up and down the country.

Science Minister Sam Gyimah said:

This is the first of a number of activities aimed at increasing public engagement in science. We have a fantastic story to tell, with the UK having some of the brightest and best entrepreneurs, innovators and scientists, to our record investment in science and plan to invest 2.4% on R&D by 2027 through our modern Industrial Strategy. Through my #ScienceSpotlight, I will highlight some of the great scientific work going on around the country.

The avatar will appear on the Twitter channel for the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy on a fortnightly basis.

Our modern Industrial Strategy sets out a long term plan to boost the productivity and earning power of people throughout the UK. It sets out how we are building an economy/a Britain fit for the future – how we will help businesses create better, higher-paying jobs in every part of the UK with investment in skills, industries and infrastructure.

We want to be the world’s most innovative economy and through the industrial strategy we have committed to reaching the target of 2.4% of GDP investment in R&D by 2027. As a first step to reaching this target, we are investing an additional £2.3bn in R&D in 2021/22. This means that we will have raised public investment in R&D from around £9.5bn in 2016/17 to around £12.5bn in 2021/22 – a total increase of £7bn over five years. This is the

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  | 

First stage winners of the Future Fuels for Flight and Freight Competition announced.

Seven industry-led projects will receive a share of £2 million to develop proposals for advanced fuels production plants, as part of the government’s drive to reduce carbon emissions.

Proposals include the production of aircraft jet fuel from steel mill waste gases, and a project exploring the use of waste wood to produce a synthetic natural gas for HGVs.

This is part of the Future Fuels for Flight and Freight Competition, which was launched in April 2017 to encourage private sector investment in the development of advanced fuel production facilities in the UK.

Biofuels Minister Jesse Norman said:

We are committed to reducing carbon emissions from transport to tackle climate change and make the sector as sustainable as possible.

The £22 million funding commitment made through this competition will enable the development of this important set of technologies, paving the way for cleaner growth in the UK.

Supporting projects like these is just part of our work to help ensure the UK transport sector is greener than ever.

The aims of the competition are to:

  • increase domestic production of advanced low carbon fuels capable of reducing emissions from the aviation and HGV sectors
  • stimulate investment and create jobs through the development of a prosperous domestic industry

The successful bids are:

Organisation Fuel type Funding
Rika Biogas Technologies Liquid biomethane £103,034
Johnson Matthey Kerosene, diesel and petrol substitutes £178,000
Standard Gas Synthetic natural gas £178,000
LanzaTech Kerosene and diesel substitutes £410,000
Progressive Energy Synthetic natural gas £175,960
Kew Projects Diesel substitute £312,300
Velocys Technologies Kerosene and petrol substitutes £434,000

Applicants that receive Stage 1 funding will be invited to apply for a share of a further £20 million Stage 2 funding to help with construction. The Stage 2 assessment will take place in December 2018 and the successful applicants will be announced in early 2019.

Further information about the successful stage 1 applicants and the competition.

News desk enquiries

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  | 

Defence Minister Guto Bebb has seen first-hand how the MOD is boosting regional economies across the country after he visited one of Britain’s leading military suppliers.

During a visit to WFEL in Stockport, a military design and manufacturing company that has worked with the Government for nearly four decades, the minister saw how the department’s funding was supporting employment in every corner of the nation.

WFEL, which employs 230 staff, has supplied tactical military bridge systems to more than 40 armed forces across the globe, including the UK, USA and Australia.

Defence Minister Guto Bebb said:

WFEL provides world-class bridge systems that enable UK Armed Forces to be rapidly deployed across the globe and project military power in any eventuality.

Defence suppliers are at the heart of British industry and the MOD will ensure that our home-grown companies continue to develop, thrive and export their innovative products to our international partners.

One of WFEL’s most enduring products is the Medium Girder Bridge, which was originally developed in partnership with the MOD.

The highly adaptable, deployable and transportable tactical bridges ensure military equipment and personnel can get to where they are needed, whether that is during conflict or a humanitarian crisis.

During the lifetime of the bridge project, the MOD has invested millions into equipment and support services with the firm, boosting the local economy and employment.

There are a range of current opportunities for further MOD investment in the company, with WFEL bidding to update and re

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  | 

Businesses can apply for a share of £4 million to support innovative ideas that reduce persistent plastic waste in the environment through new alternatives.

There is up to £4 million for innovative business projects that look at ways of reducing plastic waste through new polymers, processes, designs, recycling regimes and use of biodegradable alternatives.

The funding is provided by UK Research and Innovation and delivered by Innovate UK. This competition forms part of the £20 million package of the Plastics and Research Innovation Fund.

Tackling the plastic problem

There is growing concern about the amount of plastic waste in the environment and its impact on wildlife and the wider eco-system.

The amount of plastic waste produced is growing fast. It was reported that in 2016, 1.5 million tons of plastic was produced globally. This is set to double by 2034.

As recent as 2014, it was found that less than a third of Europe’s plastic waste was recycled, with another third ending up in landfill. The remaining third was sent to energy recovery facilities.

Projects should improve recycling

The competition is seeking ‘circular economy’ approaches to plastic use that could include:

  • developing new polymer materials
  • new product designs
  • new recycling processes
  • increasing the value of recycled polymer
  • innovations that encourage people to change behaviour and reduce plastic waste

Projects could also look at new business models or at approaches focused on compostable or biodegradable materials.

Competition information

  • the competition opened on 18 June 2018, and the deadline for applications is at midday on 8 August 2018
  • projects can be led by a business or a research and technology organisation, but all projects must include an SME. Only an SME can lead projects with costs below £100,000
  • we expect project costs to range between £50,000 and £1 million and for projects to last between 3 months and 24 months
  • businesses could attract up to 70% of their project costs
  • a briefing event will be held on 19 June 2018

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  | 

Talks will be held in Brussels, 19 to 20 June 2018

Tuesday, 19 June 2018

  • Northern Ireland/Ireland

Wednesday,

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  | 

A leading academic in regulation and a senior investment banker have been appointed as the new external members of the Prudential Regulation Committee (PRC).

One of the UK’s leading academics in regulation and a senior investment banker have been appointed by the Chancellor, Philip Hammond, today as the new external members of the Prudential Regulation Committee (PRC).

Professor Julia Black is one of the country’s leading academics in regulation law based at the London School of Economics. Jill May is an experienced investment banker, having spent 24 years at S.G.Warburg & Co. Ltd and UBS. They will both serve three year terms on the Committee, which makes the most important decisions of the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA), one of the UK’s financial regulators.

The Chancellor also announced today the reappointment of Norval Bryson to the PRC for a further three-year term.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond said:

Julia’s extensive knowledge of financial regulation and Jill’s impressive career will be valuable assets to the vital work of the Committee.

I would like to thank Charles Randell and David Thorburn for their significant contributions to the PRC over their terms, and I want to wish them all the best for the future.

The Governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney said:

I am delighted to welcome Julia Black and Jill May to the Prudential Regulation Committee. Julia is already contributing to improve how markets operate, having joined the SONIA oversight committee. Her deep knowledge of financial markets regulation will now be a valuable addition to the PRC. Jill’s extensive expertise in banking and fund management, and experience with issues around competition in markets, will also strengthen the expertise of the PRC in these areas. I look forward to working with them.

I am also glad that Norval Bryson has agreed to serve a further term on the PRC. His knowledge of the insurance industry has been immensely valuable to the Committee.

Professor Julia Black said:

I am honoured to have been appointed as an external member of the PRC. I look forward to working with the rest of the Committee and the executive team and to contributing to the essential role the Bank has supervising UK banks and insurance companies and protecting policy holders.

Jill May said:

It is a privilege to be joining the PRC and I am excited have the opportunity to bring my investment banking and competition regulation experience to the Committee. I look forward to contributing to its varied and vital work.

Further Information

  • Professor Julia Black is also a Fellow of the British Academy and has held posts as a visiting fellow at All Souls, Oxford, and the University of Sydney. Julia will take up her position on the Committee from 30 November 2018

  • Jill May recently served as a Non-Executive Director (NED) at the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA). She will take up her position on the Committee from 23 July 2018

  • Norval Bryson is a qualified actuary and was a NED of Scottish Widows Group and latterly Deputy Chairman. He was also a NED of TSB Bank from June 2013 until June 2015

The current members of the PRC are:

  • Andrew Bailey (Chief Executive Officer, Financial Conduct Authority)
  • David Belsham (External Member)
  • Sandra Boss (External Member)
  • Ben Broadbent (Deputy Governor, Monetary Policy)
  • Norval Bryson (External Member)
  • Mark Carney (Governor, Bank of England)
  • Sir John Cunliffe (Deputy Governor, Financial Stability)
  • Sir Dave Ramsden (Deputy Governor, Markets & Banking)
  • Sam Woods (Deputy Governor, Prudential Regulation and Chief Executive Officer, PRA)
  • Mark Yallop (External Member)

TUESDAY, 19 JUNE 2018  | 

Lord Ara Darzi has been appointed as chair of the Accelerated Access Collaborative, a joint government–industry group to speed up patient access to ground-breaking technologies and treatments.

The Accelerated Access Collaborative brings together leaders from the NHS, industry and government to identify the most transformative medical innovations, and will oversee a fast-track route to allow these innovative technologies to be available on the NHS up to 4 years earlier.

Under this Accelerated Access Pathway, launching later this year, a number of the most promising products will be accelerated through the clinical development and NHS approval processes to treat conditions such as cancer, diabetes and dementia.

The project builds on an £86 million funding package to help innovators of all sizes gain access to the NHS market and get their products to patients.

Lord Darzi is a former minister at the Department of Health and Social Care, chair of Imperial College Health Partners, and chairman and director of the Institute of Global Health Innovation.

The previous chair, Sir Andrew Witty, resigned in March to avoid any conflicts of interest after he took on a new role as CEO of Optum.

Health Minister Lord O’Shaughnessy said:

I want the UK to be at the forefront of breakthrough treatments and medical innovations – but often it can take too long for products to get from the bench to the bedside.

The Accelerated Access Pathway will speed up this process so patients can benefit from the best technologies far quicker – and I’m delighted to appoint Lord Darzi as the chair to oversee this important work.

Lord Darzi, Chair of the Accelerated Access Collaborative, said:

Britain is world leading in medical science and research, but we need to make sure that people in the UK are able to reap the benefits of this innovation. It is vitally important that patients have rapid access to cost-effective, transformative treatments on the NHS. Doing so will not only improve the health of our patients, but will promote future collaboration between the life sciences sector and the NHS post-Brexit – benefiting the British economy and creating jobs.

I’m thrilled to be building on the great foundations

TUESDAY, 19 JUNE 2018  | 

Karen Johnston has been reappointed as Deputy Pensions Ombudsman for a further 2 years.

Guy Opperman, Minister for Pensions and Financial Inclusion, on behalf of the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, has reappointed Karen Johnston as Deputy Pensions Ombudsman for a further 2 years. Following on from

SATURDAY, 16 JUNE 2018  | 

Healthcare professionals in GP surgeries and the community will soon give advice on dementia risk to patients as part of the NHS Health Check.

Adding the dementia element to the NHS Health Check programme will enable healthcare professionals to talk to their patients about how they can reduce their dementia risk, such as by maintaining their social life, keeping mentally and physically active and stopping smoking.

It is estimated that over 850,000 people are living with dementia in the UK with little public understanding of how it’s possible to reduce the risk. While much of the NHS Health Check focuses on reducing cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk, the advice for preventing CVD is much the same as for dementia: ‘what’s good for the heart is good for the brain’.

Data published today shows the last 5-year performance of the NHS Health Check:

  • over 14 million people (91% of the 5-year eligible population) have been offered an NHS Health Check
  • almost 7 million (48.7% of those offered) have had a health check

Duncan Selbie, Chief Executive of Public Health England said:

The NHS Health Check is one of the largest public health prevention programmes in the world with almost 7 million in the last 5 years having benefited from a check, and it’s reaching the people where it’s most needed with the greatest numbers in the most disadvantaged areas. This success is down to local councils delivering and they should be proud of this achievement.

It’s free and fast, and effective - just 15 minutes that could add years to your life.

Minister for Public Health Steve Brine said:

Early detection and prevention are vital to the health of our nation and our programmes in this area are among the most ambitious in the world.

Our aim is to keep everyone as healthy as possible, for as long as possible, which is why we are introducing advice on dementia prevention as part of our free health checks.

As much as 85% of CVD is preventable. The NHS Health Check helps to identify and support people who would benefit from clinical and lifestyle treatment and services for the top 7 risk factors driving the burden of non-communicable disease, such as all cancers, diabetes, heart and respiratory diseases. Being a healthy weight and eating a healthy diet, not smoking, drinking in moderation, keeping active and ensuring you know your numbers (blood pressure and cholesterol) can all help reduce the risks of C

TUESDAY, 19 JUNE 2018  | 

Organisations can apply for a share of £150 million this year to support new technologies that help to make the UK civil aerospace industry more competitive.

The Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI), Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and Innovate UK are inviting organisations to come forward with innovative aerospace projects that could attract funding support.

The invitation is under the UK Aerospace Research and Technology Programme. This is a £3.9 billion joint government and industry investment in projects that will make the UK more competitive in civil aerospace.

There is around £150 million available each year to support projects, and there are regular opportunities to submit ideas during the course of the year.

Businesses and researchers can submit expressions of interest in carrying out innovative projects. The best ideas will be invited to apply for funding support.

Ideas must be in line with UK aerospace strategy

We are seeking projects that are aligned with the UK’s aerospace technology strategy.

Priority areas include:

  • strengthening the UK’s whole-aircraft design and system integration capability and positioning it for future generations of civil aircraft
  • the development of smart, connected and more electric aircraft
  • ensuring the UK is a global leader in the development of large complex structures, particularly wings
  • advancing a new generation of more efficient propulsion technologies, particularly large turbofans

Competition information

  • the competition opens for expressions of interest on 2 July 2018, and the deadline for submissions is 18 July 2018
  • successful applicants will be invited to make a full funding application. The approval process typically takes 6 months
  • organisations can work alone or in partnership with other businesses and researchers
  • project costs and duration should be in proportion to the objectives
  • businesses could attract up to 70% of their project costs
  • you will need to sign up to the ATI framework agreement to be eligible to apply

TUESDAY, 19 JUNE 2018  | 

Scottish Secretary David Mundell today updated the House of Commons on the fire at the Glasgow School of Art

Speaking in the House of Commons today the Secretary of State for Scotland said:

As the House will be aware, on the night of 15 June a fire broke out at Glasgow School of Art’s renowned . The Building is one of Glasgow’s iconic landmarks and regarded as Mackintosh’s greatest work. It is, rightly, respected as of great architectural significance and a unique and irreplaceable building in the eyes of many worldwide.

Indeed the art school was itself a work of art. It is a jewel in a city that sparkles with architectural splendour.

And it is also worth noting that the building next door, the O2 ABC music venue has also been affected. It was an even older building and had a colourful and varied history.

The art school was never a museum piece but a living, breathing, working art school – a powerhouse of creativity, a much loved part of the fabric of Glasgow.

We can, however, be grateful that this tragedy was not worsened by a loss of life. My heartfelt thanks go out to the emergency services, particularly the fire service, who attended the scene under such adverse conditions, in the heart of the vibrant city’s nightlife.

Many people, like myself, are still in disbelief that this could happen again after the devastating fire of 2014, particularly so given the painstaking and careful efforts that have taken place over the past years to restore the building.

I visited the building on 1st June for the Degree Show 2018 opening. I saw the restored library and famous Hen Run and was struck by the love and passion of those involved in restoring the building. I am personally devastated by this fire, a fact I communicated directly when speaking to the School’s Director, Professor Tom Inns, over the weekend. My heart goes out to the School, its students and supporters who have done so much to raise funds for the restoration after 2014.

At this point we do not know the cause of the fire, but I note that the fire service has assured us that a “comprehensive and professional” probe will be carried out in due course.

The UK Government previously gave £10 million to rebuild the School after the last fire and we stand ready to help again.

There was never any question about the need to rebuild and restore it when tragedy struck just four years ago. The situation is far worse after the weekend’s fire, but I hope we can start with that aim in mind.

Obviously there are real questions about what will happen next. But we stand ready to work with the School, the City Council and the Scottish Government. I am visiting the site and meeting the Head of the School on Friday. I

MONDAY, 18 JUNE 2018  | 

The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) is encouraging motorcyclists to brush up on their skills to make their riding safer and more enjoyable.

The DVSA enhanced rider scheme is a voluntary scheme to help motorcyclists get more from their riding.

You’re never too good, and the DVSA enhanced rider scheme lets you improve the skills that will help make your riding safer and more fun.

How the scheme works

You book an appointment with an expert trainer. The trainers are passionate bikers who want to share their experience and advice to help you get more from your riding.

You’ll get for a ride out with them for between 1 and 2 hours so they can see what you’re good at and any areas you might be able to improve.

If you don’t need any training, there’s nothing more to do. You’ll be sent a DVSA enhanced rider scheme certificate.

But if you do need some training, you’ll work with your trainer on a personalised training plan. When you’ve done the training, you’ll be sent a DVSA enhanced rider scheme certificate.

The cost of the scheme is set by individual trainers. Some local councils also offer a subsidy to help with the cost. Check with your trainer or local council.

Helping you through a lifetime of safe riding

Mark Winn, DVSA Chief Driving Examiner, said:

DVSA’s priority is to help you through a lifetime of safe riding.

You’re never too experienced to learn more safety skills, and the DVSA enhanced rider scheme is all about helping make a ride out even more enjoyable.

While experience and riding regularly help, there’s no substitute for the training, advice and tips you’ll get from an expert trainer.

Motorcyclists are among the most vulnerable road users

In 2016, 319 motorcyclists died in incidents on Great Britain’s roads, and 5,553 were seriously injured. Serious injuries include things like a broken neck or back, severe head injuries and internal injuries.

During the same time, 16,785 motorcycles were involved in all reported accidents.

Taking extra training can help reduce the risk of being involved in a collision, and make any ride out more enjoyable. The DVSA enhanced rider scheme includes modules on topics including:

  • defensive riding and hazard awareness
  • progress and use

Recent Comments

Follow Us on Twitter

Share This


Enjoyed this? Why not share it with others if you've found it useful by using one of the tools below: