Helping young people with their future plans

The hot weather heralded the end of hundreds of young people’s secondary education with exams finishing for the majority last week.

Many young people will already be clear about their plans for the future with further education and university applications already in the pipeline.

But for some the summer offers a blank page with adulthood on the horizon and decisions about what to do next.

If you are one of the young people still deciding whether to remain in education or to enter the world of work it’s important to remember that there is plenty of support out there.


Major step forward for city university

This is the week that devolution started to produce real, tangible benefits for the city and our residents.

An important reason for backing a devolution deal for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough was to establish an independent university in the city.

Well, one of the first major funding announcements from the Combined Authority is set to be  £6.5million to accelerate the establishment of the University of Peterborough.

I believe a university is vital for the prosperity of the city for a number of reasons including creating opportunities for our young people and developing a better skilled workforce for employers. It will also create jobs and provide the most important boost to the local economy for a generation.

I must stress that to develop a renowned university that attracts students from across the UK to the city, and eventually from around the world, will take time.


Election results have caused me a few headaches

When you’ve been a councillor for as long as I have, there are few things in the world of politics that shock you.

Even though I wasn’t surprised by last week’s election results, it’s fair to say it has caused me a few headaches. No doubt the same can be said for our Prime Minister!

Losing the East ward by-election means the Conservatives do not have a majority on the Council. We still have more seats than any other party, but collectively all those other members added together outnumber my group by one.

This means that there will have to be a special meeting of the council next Tuesday, called an extraordinary meeting because it’s outside of the usual schedule. This will be to discuss the number of councillors from each political party that sit on our committees, so that they are proportionate to the balance of councillors.

As I said in my speech to annual council last month, I want to do all of this working collaboratively across the council with all political groups. This is something I have done throughout my political career and something that comes naturally to me to get the best result for the city and our residents.