Angela Smith MP

Penistone & Stocksbridge

smith angela copy small

Welcome to my website, where you will find my latest news, brief biography, details of how to contact me and some other useful links and information. There is also some information about the constituency and local contact numbers which might be useful.

I am here for all my constituents, so if you have any queries or other concerns, please contact me or make an appointment to see me at one of my regular advice surgeries. 

As the MP for Penistone & Stocksbridge, I am always looking for different ways to keep in touch with my constituents, so I hope you find this site useful and informative. The site is updated regularly, so please do come back often. 

I look forward to hearing from you.

 
Best wishes
 
 
Member of Parliament
Penistone & Stocksbridge
 
 
IMAGE Daily Telegraph Comment
Monday, 13 May 2019
Daily Telegraph Comment Jeremy Corbyn’s childish and irresponsible refusal to join Brexit talks with Theresa May, on the grounds that Chuka Ummuna... Read More...
IMAGE Labour and the Tories lost out in the elections because they offer little Brexit clarity
Monday, 13 May 2019
Labour and the Tories lost out in the elections because they offer little Brexit clarity Printed in the May edition of the Farmers Guardian The... Read More...
IMAGE Politics is broken
Thursday, 18 April 2019
Politics is broken Published on the Politics home website 22nd April 2019 Angela's speech to Parliament can be found Here  Politics is... Read More...
IMAGE Brexit is sucking the life out of public policy
Wednesday, 17 April 2019
Brexit is sucking the life out of public policy Published in the April edition of the Farmers Guardian What is clear more than ever is people want... Read More...
IMAGE Statement why we have decided to leave Chuk and sit as Independents 
Monday, 20 May 2019
Statement why we have decided to leave Chuk and sit as Independents  We are all immensely proud of the team of Change UK candidates and... Read More...
Statement from the Office of Angela Smith MP
Monday, 20 May 2019
Angela's hip replacement Angela would like constituents to know that on Tuesday 14th May 2019 she will be entering hospital for a Hip replacement... Read More...
IMAGE Christmas Comes Early!
Thursday, 20 December 2018
Christmas Comes Early!  Local school children collect prizes in local MPs Christmas Card Competition This Saturday (1st December) saw Ozzie... Read More...
IMAGE Angela named as one of the 10
Wednesday, 19 December 2018
Angela named as one of the 10 people who made a mark on environmental policy in 2018 The ENDS report, the UK’s number 1 source of intelligence for... Read More...

Speech to the British Water Reception

House of Lords Wednesday 6th February 2019

(check against delivery)

There is no doubt the industry has some historical and present-day issues to deal with.

Just last month we saw a hint of the challenges to be faced when only 3 out of 17 water companies received fast-tracking for their business plans from Ofwat for the control period 2020-2025.

Indeed, 4 companies, in the opinion of the regulator need to substantially rework their plans and re-submit them before they are accepted.

Meaning almost 25% of companies have submitted plans which the regulator wants to see a major improvement in before allowing them to proceed further.

Even then the vast majority of submissions by companies to OFWAT need in the words of the regulator ‘further work’ before they can be accepted.

I think it is only right OFWAT seems to be setting such high standards for the period 2020 – 2025. The companies do need to be challenged and pushed further than ever before to improve efficiency, customer service and resilience.

I think the regulator is right to challenge companies to share financial gains with customers and to ensure dividend and executive pay policy is aligned to delivering for customers.

Its right they should look way beyond the five-year price review period to meet the needs of future customers and protect and improve the natural environment.

If the industry is to meet the challenges it will face it needs to start to think about them today not tomorrow.

Let’s not let our bashing of the industry go too far.  

We do need to keep in perspective just how a good the industry it is overall, especially when compared to that of many other advanced nations.

For instance, almost every household in the UK has a connection above secondary treatment levels.

Something neither the Germans nor the French enjoy.

On most measures of customer service, the industry outperforms many other countries.

On investment, it measures up to most other countries and has high levels of productivity.

Indeed, the UK’s water industry is respected around the world for its expertise and the way it efficiently supplies water and cleans waste.

In many ways, the UK's water sector is looked upon as an exemplar of how the industry can be and should be run.

Indeed, in what soon might be the post-Brexit UK there will be opportunities for the sector to sell that expertise in water engineering around the world. 

Affordable and safe drinking water is a goal common to all countries. Nevertheless, up to 1.8 billion people globally lack access to safe water and it is predicted two-thirds of the world’s inhabitants could live in water-stressed conditions by 2025.

The UK can help these countries respond to these challenges.

It is a sector that has decades of experience in developing integrated water-resource management solutions and techniques.

There have been some notable successes, such as the recently announced wastewater plant in Bahrain facilitated through a £28m loan from UK Finance.

The sector can, however, do so much more. But to do so will take the Department of International Trade to engage better with the sector.

On that, I do welcome the department’s recent consultation on how it can help British exporters and industries in Post Brexit Britain.

Now we need those words and good intentions to be put into practice.

Therefore, I call on Government to be much more proactive in supporting the industry and the people within it.

Domestically, the future also holds many challenges and opportunities for the industry.

We have already heard how the regulator sees the future of the industry and how it is challenging the industry to face up to tomorrow, today.

Others, however, see different ownership models as the key to meeting the challenges the sector faces.

That’s not to say I’m ideologically wedded to the private sector owning the sector, but I have yet to see a change in the model of ownership that will improve the sector or make it fit for the challenges that lay ahead.

Both nationalisation and mutualisation have been talked about as solutions and both I believe have issues.

Both require large amounts of public investment to recompense shareholders. We are told something between £50bn and £100bn

Also major is an investment in the sector is required. £5bn over the next control period and £25bn over the next 25 years.

At a time when public spending is under such pressure, I fear investment would end being diverted elsewhere or shelved.

So, while the present structure of the industry is imperfect I do believe with an enhanced role for the regulator and a change of culture could a step change in the industry could be accomplished helping it to deal with the challenges ahead.  

I welcome, therefore the words of the new Chief Executive of OFWAT, Rachel Fletcher when she talks about water companies being part of a social contract as a way of changing the culture.

For me indicating a move away from the pile on the debt and high shareholder returns culture some companies had in the past.

If the industry is to meet the challenges which lay ahead I think this is exactly the way the industry needs to be shaped. Companies need to aim to become more like Social Enterprises with consumers and the environment at the core of their business model.

And the challenges they face are great, make no bones about it.

The National Infrastructure Commission recently, and rightly identified that climate change and a growing population will inevitably put extra pressure on water resources.

Already, there are areas of the country which are suffering water stress with South East of England being badly affected, yet its population is expected to grow by 25% by mid-century, with a consequent demand for an extra half a million homes all requiring water, drainage and sewerage.   

Climate change will deliver more extreme weather events over the coming decades, in all parts of the country, with sometimes too much water or as we found out last year, too little. Both of which the companies must learn to deal with better. 

We also know without major investment it will be impossible to meet the standards required by the EU Water Framework Directive which says all our rivers should be in good condition, by a target date of 2027.  

Then, of course, there’s leakage.  Not only is this an irritation to consumers but a waste and an unnecessary depletion of a precious resource and needs to be dealt with

New Infrastructure will be required to face these challenges too. Be those new reservoirs or the means to transfer water from wetter areas of the country to dryer areas.

The challenge here will not only be providing the capital to do so but also a fit for purpose planning system.

And of course, all these need to be dealt with sustainably, while making sure water bills are still affordable.

One final point I would like to make, and one often forgotten is that no matter how the industry is structured there will always be a relationship with a supply chain of smaller private companies.

Here the regional company must learn a much better way of working. Presently their expertise is often ignored, and innovations missed.

That’s a loss to everyone. 

Here, again though I think a move to a more social enterprise type of working could be of benefit by treating suppliers as stakeholders within the family.

Yes, I know this is already happening to some degree but by fully bringing outside organisations into the tent, letting them fully express themselves surely this can only help bring innovative processes forward helping meet the challenges of the future  

To finish with, in many ways, we need, to see societal change, to really learn the value of water, where it comes from, what it does for us, and how we return it back to the environment.  

I firmly believe we can meet these challenges. They won’t be easy. They will take investment. They will mean a change in how the sector works, including the regulation of it.

But after speaking to so many professionals in the industry it is clear there is a desire to build a more sustainable future. One that puts the environment and consumers at its heart and one that is sustainable.

 westminster

My Parliamentary staff are always happy to arrange tours of the Houses of Parliament for constituents who are visiting London, subject, of course to Parliamentary business (which can sometimes restrict access) on the day.

A full tour of the Palace of Westminster takes in Sovereign's Entrance, Norman Porch, Royal Gallery, Prince's Chamber, the House of Lords Chamber, Central Lobby, Voting Lobby, Members' Lobby, the House of Commons Chamber, St Stephen's Hall and Westminster Hall.

Due to the strong demand for these tours, it is best to get in touch at least 3 months before your planned visit.

More details here

team constit

Without my fantastic team of staff I couldn't serve the people of Penistone & Stocksbridge.

In Sheffield I have 2 full-time members of staff assited by a further part-time member. Together they look after my diary and casework.

In Lonodn I also emply a part-time member of staff who my assists Seniorr Researcher/Chief of Staff who works in both my London Office and the constituency. 

Meet the team 

Write to Angela at;
The MPs Office
Stocksbridge  Maria House, 3 Fox Valley Way
S36 2AA
Telephone; 0114 2831855

Email officeofangelasmithmp@parliament.uk 

Or you can contact Angela through this website by going below; 

Write to me 

 

In addition to their salary, MPs are allowed to claim various expenses to enable them to carry out duties on behalf of constituents

These expenses cover things such as running offices in the constituency and Westminster, the paying of staff, as well as claiming for a second home, which is a necessary expense for many MPs who have to spend part of the week in Westminster.

Since the General Election of 2010 the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority monitors and sets MPs expenses. They regularly publish Members expenses online on a 3 monthly basis. Click below for more details.

 IPSA 

If you would like to see Angela personally, or if there is an issue you want to talk to me about, you can arrange to meet her.

Alternatively we can, if you want deal with concern online. For more details go here   

Angela holds regular advice surgeries in throughout the constituency of Penistone & Stocksbridge and at different times and at  locations:

To see Angela at one of her surgeries please call the constituency office on 0114 2831855 to request an appoinment.

We will request the details of your problem before the surgery and then make an appointment for you to see Angela .

You can also write to Angela at the House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA or use the contact form on this website to get in touch

Contact me