An extra £100 per pupil for Wiltshire schools
As our MP, Duncan took a campaign to the Department for Education for fairer funding for Wiltshire’s schools, to stop local pupils losing out compared to those in other counties. He managed to secure an extra £100 per pupil for Wiltshire’s schools this year, and will continue to push for fully fair funding.
Regular trains for Melksham
Duncan worked with local members of the TransWilts Community Rail Partnership to bring regular trains back to Melksham. The new TransWilts service began in December 2013, with eight trains a day in each direction along the line between Westbury and Swindon a day, calling at Trowbridge, Melksham and Chippenham.
Duncan helped to secure the future of the TransWilts service in the new Great Western rail franchise, with increased capacity from 2017.
Funding to rebuild Chippenham’s college
Duncan helped win Government funding to rebuild Wiltshire College in Chippenham – even enlisting the Prime Minister’s support at Prime Minister’s Questions. The new state-of-the-art facility will open in September. It will allow more young people to undertake training at the College as part of their apprenticeships, helping them to gain the workplace skills employers demand.
Winning Government investment to create local jobs
Duncan backed the successful bid for Wiltshire’s new ‘Growth Deal’, which will bring £140 million of government investment to our area over the next seven years, including funding to transform Corsham’s Mansion House into a hub for digital start-up businesses.
He’s also helped secure Government grants for local employers, including AB Dynamics in Bradford on Avon and Dymag in Chippenham, to enable them to expand and create more jobs here. The number of people out of work and claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance in our area has halved since 2010.
Relieving overcrowding on Bradford on Avon trains
Since before becoming our MP, Duncan has campaigned to increase capacity on train services calling at Bradford on Avon and relieve overcrowding. He helped win extra carriages on the Cardiff-Bristol-Portsmouth services through Bradford on Avon from 2017 in the new Great Western franchise.
Step-free access at Chippenham station
Duncan kept the pressure on Ministers and Network Rail to get work started to provide step-free access at Chippenham station. Construction is now underway on a new footbridge and lifts which will make access to the platforms much easier for disabled people and those with small children, buggies and luggage.
Saved Bradford on Avon ticket office
Duncan presented a petition to the House of Commons, signed by 1,200 local residents, calling for the ticket office at Bradford on Avon station to be kept open. He gained assurances from Ministers that there are no plans to close the ticket office, and urged the Government to make sure it is kept open and staffed in his response to the consultation on the new Great Western Franchise.
Here are some of the things Duncan is already working on to achieve in the next Parliament: