union for life

Newbury

Newbury

Major employers

AWE, Diamond Light Source, RSRL, BT, Vodafone

Questions

  1. How will you ensure that key, cross-border industries – including energy, telecoms, broadcasting, nuclear, science and aviation – can prosper outside the single market?
  2. Will you support the renewal of Trident, including construction of the full fleet of four successor submarines necessary to maintain a continuous at-sea deterrent?
  3. Will you unilaterally guarantee the residence and citizenship rights of EU nationals currently living or working in the UK, irrespective of negotiations with the EU?
  4. Will you guarantee continued access to European science funding streams and collaborative projects and freedom of movement for relevant STEM workers?
  5. Will you lift the arbitrary and unsustainable cap on public sector pay and commission an independent review of pay in the civil service and wider public sector?
  6. Will you provide the telecoms sector with the certainty and stability needed to deliver necessary investment by ruling out further interference in the legal and operational structure of BT and its subsidiary OpenReach?

Candidates’ responses

Richard Benyon (Conservative)

How will you ensure that key, cross-border industries – including energy, telecoms, broadcasting, nuclear, science and aviation – can prosper outside the single market?

It is crucial that we get a good deal with our EU neighbours. Theresa May has already set out her objectives and part of that includes replicating much of what exists in terms of our trading relationship with the EU. But we can also do more to support trade beyond Europe. I was one of the Prime Minister's Trade Envoys before the election and I saw how much opportunity and demand there is for British goods and expertise in the growth markets of Africa and the Far East.

Will you support the renewal of Trident, including construction of the full fleet of four successor submarines necessary to maintain a continuous at-sea deterrent?

Yes.

Will you unilaterally guarantee the residence and citizenship rights of EU nationals currently living or working in the UK, irrespective of negotiations with the EU?

You cannot separate the two - both are equally important and I am confident that sense will prevail and a deal will be secured to guarantee the status of EU nationals living in the UK and UK nationals living in the EU.

Will you guarantee continued access to European science funding streams and collaborative projects and freedom of movement for relevant STEM workers?

This is a matter for the negotiations. Close cooperation on science and research, including the replication of the Euratom work is a negotiating priority for the Government and I will do whatever I can to assist in achieving this.

Will you provide the telecoms sector with the certainty and stability needed to deliver necessary investment by ruling out further interference in the legal and operational structure of BT and its subsidiary OpenReach?

This is a matter for the independent regulator. One of my pledges at previous elections has been to secure superfast broadband for West Berkshire. I have had my differences with OpenReach in the way they have implemented the superfast broadband rollout in West Berkshire but I'm pleased that, with the combination of BT and West Berkshire Council's contract with Gigaclear, we have achieved 94% availability of superfast broadband and this will rise to 99% of all households in the coming year or two.

Alex Skirvin (Labour)

Response awaited

Judith Bunting (Lib Dem)

Response awaited