Education not Segregation - Say no to new grammar schools



County says no to new grammar schools

New grammar schools have been officially opposed by county councillors after they debated the idea in a meeting last week. Warwickshire County Council voted to pass the Labour-led motion by 28 votes to 25.

The majority of opponents to the motion came from the Conservatives, who were more supportive of the Government’s plan to create new grammar schools. After the meeting, Cllr Matt Western (Lab, Leamington Willes) said: “Warwickshire is proud of its existing good schools and we argue that any additional grammar schools would be to the detriment of the current schools network. “This is not just our view but one endorsed by both the former Education Secretary, Nicky Morgan and more importantly by Sir Michael Wilshaw, the former Head of OFSTED.

“Even David Cameron was against their re-introduction. Virtually all education professionals oppose the expansion of grammar schools stating that, far from increasing social mobility, they undermine the quality of existing secondary schools and improving life chances across the board.”

Cllr Western also met up with the Shadow Minister for Education Angela Rayner at the Labour Party Conference in Liverpool this week. She will now be sent a dossier about Warwickshire’s schools. He added: “The shadow minister was delighted to hear that Warwickshire County Council has formally voted against grammar schools. “We will work with Angela Rayner to oppose this policy. Warwickshire has a proud record that we do not want to see destroyed.”

Read more at:


28 September 2016 0

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Radio 4 Any Questions invite

Warwick Business School, University of Warwick, will be hosting Radio 4’s ‘Any Questions?’ radio programme on Friday 16th September 2016.
We would like to invite members of local political parties to attend and participate in the recording of this programme, and are able to reserve a limited number of tickets for your party.
Tickets for this event are free, and are available from Warwick Business School Reception at:
Warwick Business School
Scarman Road
University of Warwick
The event is open to all members of the public over the age of 14.
If you have any queries regarding the event or programme, please do not hesitate to contact me on the number below.
Yours faithfully,
Eleanor Bowering
02476 573627
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Houlton - update: Link Road significantly ahead of schedule

Quick Update for Rugby Residents regarding Houlton:  (Thanks to Johanna at Urban and Civic for the information)


  • First primary school opens in September 2017 – well ahead of the 200 home section 106 trigger.  Urban and Civic will have built roughly 40-50 homes by the time the school opens.


  • Urban and Civic have secured funding to deliver the Link Road significantly ahead of schedule.  The link road connects the development (and first phase) with Butlers Leap and is intended to encourage people at Houlton to use Rugby town centre and also to relieve pressure on the A428 and other routes into town. In section 106 terms (planning) this road didn’t need to go in until the 1750th home is built but we are now delivering this by the end of 2018 – some 5-7 years ahead of schedule. This has been received positively locally as there will only be c. 150-200 homes built by then. This is a huge story for Hillmorton and we are keen that people know this as it will make a big difference to the impact on Hillmorton. I know again, this doesn’t take account of other development in this part of Rugby but I would be keen for people to know that we have secured this investment to deliver this road early and that infrastructure is going in early at Houlton.


  • There are also mitigation (to be clarified - Jim) plans for junctions along the A428 as part of the section 106 at Watts Lane, Paddox pub junction and Kilsby Lane.

The timescale for the delivery of these (by the 800th home in the s.106) did used to frustrate people but that was when they also didn’t think the link road was going in until 1750th home. The link road changes all of that now hence my keenness to make sure that news is known locally.   


  • We are delivering the offset footway and cycleway along the A428 connecting DIRFT to Hillmorton early in response to local concern on the safety along that stretch of road. This will be open by the end of October this year.


  • We are working with the NHS to bring early GP provision on to the site. Current section 106 trigger sees an 8 GP health centre delivered at Houlton (with more than enough capacity for the whole development) but that doesn’t have to be delivered until halfway through the development.
  • We have been working with the NHS to explore earlier provision as soon as possible. They have stated circa 2018 as a date at which they see enough residents to warrant a small GP offer. This again is about 7-8 years ahead of planning trigger and this will feature in our first Local Centre at Houlton.


  • Additional provision coming forward from day one are green spaces, natural play and opening up of Normandy Hill as a recreational space.
  • A Visitors Centre, community centre and café. All of these will be open by the end of this year – before any homes are built.


  • Housebuilding begins at the end of this month/early September.


Hope this information is helpful - and goes towards relieving people's concerns about sustainable and sensitive development.  

Thanks to Jo for the information.


Jim Ellis

Rugby East Labour Party


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Sun Shines with Labour Cllrs Webb & Edwards in Brownsover

10:31Monday 15 August 2016

Brownsover residents enjoyed fun in the fun when their first community day was held. Families flocked to the Hollowell Way play area last Friday to enjoy a number of different activities. 


 Cllrs Webb(s) and Cllr Claire Edwards have some Fun in Brownsover.

There were bouncy castles funded by Brownsover Community Association, games, music, face-painting and delicious food and drink. Local groups and organisations took part in the event to let people know what’s on offer in the area.

Jennifer McCabe, community development worker (Rugby) Localities & Partnerships, ​Warwickshire County Council, said: “Warwickshire Police brought along a car and pieces of uniform for kids to try on, the Queen Diamond Jubilee Centre and On Track provided sports activities and there was a dance contest for youngsters - and some grown-ups! “

It was great to see so many people out enjoying themselves and they showed what a close-knit and thriving community Brownsover is.” She added: “There was real interest on the day for this event to be repeated every year and it would be great if this happened.”

If anyone from Brownsover has any ideas about next year or would like to get involved, email

Read more at:

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Leadership Debates LIVE

Dear Member - 

Labour is a broad church - we have people who know where they stand and those, who, are undecided.

Wherever you are in the debate, we hope you will listen to both parties to arrive at a respectful, informed position to make the right decision for the party, members & voters which of course leads to and defines our electability, ultimately taking our arguments forward to battle the Tories.

Our CLP is co-operative with and supportive of its members, respectful of individual perspectives, its candidates and its Councillors.  

We are a team.

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Labours Cllr Ramesh Srivastava works toward helping Rugby's unemployed

Donation will help unemployed people

Benn Partnership has received a further grant from Rugby Benevolent Fund to help fund the Beyond Recession Project for another year. The project, which supports Rugby’s unemployed, is in its sixth year and has been supported by Rugby Benevolent Fund, a charity supported by cement manufacturing firm Cemex UK, since it started.


Pictured are BPC trustee Cllr Ramesh Srivastava (left) with Rebekka Clarkson (BPC Centre Manager) receiving the cheque for £16,050 from Ian Southcott, Cemex UK Community Affairs Manager.

The Beyond Recession Project aims to support the unemployed with job planning and also helps them to understand how changes to benefits rules will affect them. It also helps people get back into work.

Read more at:

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Cooperating is key to Paddox crossing

Since we are £192 million pounds in debt in Warks due to successive Conservative budget cuts – it seems that we are unable to fund traffic safety at the paddox junction.


It turns out that a Crossing can cost an eye watering £65,000.


I applaud the Greens for re-emphasising and calling for it again though – so credit to them – it is an issue both they and I share. Indeed – it was one of the main reasons on that very spot that I ran for local Council in May since my own son runs the gauntlet at that spot every day.

However – just because it is expensive to install a crossing – it isnt the only solution and it certainly isnt possible for the unelected to push this issue other than writing to the local paper.


However take this example of co-operation between Labour councillors in Newbold. They faced an issue when Avon valley school kids were dodging traffic. Since they were equally short of a few bob – they combined budgets to afford one crossing.

The whole highway safety budget for Warwickshire covering five districts the size of Rugby amounts to £2M and is spread between 62 councillors, each allotted a budget of £32,258. A puffin crossing costs £65,000. They co-operated combined their budgets and made sure the kids were safe on a busy road.


Now – we dont have Labour councillors in Hillmorton and Paddox – but we do have Liberal County Councillors in Hillmorton. I ask respectfully - Can they not follow the same co-oeprative policy of combining their budgets to produce a similar solution?

Combining budgets allows for the £65K we require for a crossing – but if this is beyond capacity – I offer the cheaper solution of employing a 'lollipop' man.

For those interested – the ongoing associated costs are only in the region of £4000 a year.

I'm sure one childs life is worth £4000?


Infact I'd advocate that a childs life is worth more than the budget cuts of £192 million that we are currently enduring in Warwickshire.

Further info:

Jim Ellis

Labour – Rugby East

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Leadership Debates 2016

Choose Labour’s next Prime Minister

Over the coming weeks and months Labour members and supporters will choose our candidate for next Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.

During the leadership election the two candidates will take part in a series of live debates organised by the Labour Party and media organisations. You will be able to watch the Labour Party debates live on this page – on your computer, smart phone, ipad and TV.

Unlike previous contests, these events will be available for everyone to watch.  No matter where you are in the country you’ll be able to hear what the candidates have to say as the debates happen.

The first Leadership debate will take place in:

  • Cardiff: 7pm to 9.30pm Thursday 4 August

  • Nottinghamshire: Wednesday 17 August - BBC

  • Birmingham: Thursday 18 August

  • Glasgow: Thursday 25 August

  • London: Thursday 1 September - Guardian


More information and to submit a question via this link:

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Brownsover Community Day

Cllr Kieren Brown: "Proud to be at the Brownsover Community Day today. Great to be with the people and pleased to see that they are looking to go from strength to strength with these types of projects!"


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Houlton - Progress report

Houlton is progressing - they have also updated their website:

In addition to this they have also released an ariel image showing progress. You can see the roads forming and connecting too.

There will be an alignment of the A428 with a new junction and Roundabout. Temporary Lights will be in place until beginning of September.

If you don't know already the town is being named Houlton because of where the radio masts first broadcast.


 Looking at the first homes - if the brochure is anything to go by - they are large Executive style homes.  Prices are unsurprisingly expensive for local residents and whilst the development may include cheaper homes in the future - current prices are:

A two bedroom home starts at £200,000
A three bedroom home starts at £320,000
A four bedroom home starts at £435,000
A five bedroom home is £523 - 600,000

Which for most people in rugby may prove exclusive.

They will be aiming for:

  • 6,200 new homes
  • 500 Acres of open space
  • New Secondary school - (chance of Ashlawn II)
  • 8 GP Health Centre
  • 3 Primary Schools
  • 3 Local centres and a District centre
  • Grade II renovation of Heritage Building.
  • New link road to Rugby
  • 13,850 meters of footpaths
  • Community facilities
  • Network of cycle paths
  • Natural play

From their spiel:

"What you see today is only the beginning of your journey, as well as ours. 6,200 homes will be created in the verdant Warwickshire countryside with new schools and an excellent location. Set within 1,200 acres of beautiful open space, this is an unspoiled, super-connected place with a rich history and an exciting future.


The first homes at Houlton will be built in summer 2016 and by spring 2017, our first residents will move in to their new homes. Our carefully selected housebuilders build quality homes that look good and fit well into the beautiful countryside setting at Houlton.


Example of house style from Urban & Civic.


This is one of the most well-connected places in the country, and from Rugby you can reach 80% of the country within 4 hours. So whether it’s visiting family, weekends away or the daily commute – you couldn’t be in a better place.


The development is being brought forward by Urban&Civic in partnership with Aviva Investors and partners – combining long term investment with experience of delivering largescale communities across the country.


We are proud of our track record for community engagement in Rugby. Local Parish Councils, community groups, elected members and neighbouring residents are amongst our wider network of partners. They come with us on the journey and help steer us in creating a place that truly fits with Rugby and its existing communities.



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Candidates Owen Smith and Jeremy Corbyn

Dear Member,
Today the Procedures Committee, established by the Labour Party National Executive Committee, declared that the following would be candidates in the 2016 Leadership election: Jeremy Corbyn MP, Owen Smith MP.
Applications to become a Registered Supporter of the Labour Party and vote in the 2016 Leadership Contest closed at 5.00pm today.
Ballots will be dispatched in the period from 22 August until 12 September. Members will receive ballots via post and email. Registered and affiliated supporters will receive ballots via email. The balloting period will close at 12 noon on 21 September.
For members whose subscription is in arrears, the deadline for renewal is noon on 8 August. If your membership is in arrears, you can renew here.
Registration for the Leadership Conference at which the results will be declared will open at in the coming weeks.
Data Protection
We thought it would be useful to remind everyone that the Labour Party National Executive Committee has set strict guidelines regarding the use of data by candidates in line with guidance from the Information Commissioner.
Here is what you can expect from the Labour Party.
The Labour Party does not sell or give personal data to third parties. However, during the Leadership contest you may get phone calls from the candidates and direct mail in accordance with the procedures set out by the National Executive Committee. The national Labour Party will be sending emails on behalf of the candidates.
If you think you are receiving unsolicited communications from people or organisations who shouldn't have your data, then there are some simple steps you can take.
Ask them exactly who they are and where they got your data.
Tell them to stop contacting you by phone or email (or both).
If you believe they have unauthorised access to your Labour Party data let us know by emailing
with 'Personal Data Query' as the subject line and giving as much detail as you can.
Finally, you should also complain to the Information Commissioner if you believe someone is misusing or has unauthorised access to your data.
for more information.
The Labour Party does issue a range of communications - nationally, locally and from elected representatives at every level. We hope that these communications will help people get the most of their membership. But we are committed to stamping out nuisance calls and emails.
For more information about the 2016 Leadership Election visit:
Yours sincerely
Iain McNicol
General Secretary
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Ashlawn School Expansion

*** news from Ashlawn ***


At last we have received exciting news from the DFE. Our bid to open an additional school has been accepted and we can now move forward into a pre-opening phase. 

We have issued a press release to that effect which you can find on the web site 

As soon as I have any concrete information about site or admissions I will update you all again. I do not expect that we will know much more until we return in September. 

In the mean-time please spread the word and encourage friends and family who are interested in receiving information directly to visit the web site and sign up. 

Thank you for your support and patience so far. I look forward to sharing more details of our plans through out the coming year. 

Kindest Regards

April Gold

Deputy Head Teacher (Partnerships)

Ashlawn School

Ashlawn Road


CV22 5ET

01788 573425


----------------- Update  ----------------


The bid was for 180 year 7 students in Sept 2017, growing by 180 each year until we are fully populated including sixth form so it will be a 7 year rolling growth plan.

The site is still undecided. The EFA will now begin to discuss with us possibilities.

Regarding potential sites I would welcome your local knowledge. We suggested the Bishop Wulstan fields, but the Rugby Free Secondary School are now going there, and the Radio Station as potential spots to the EFA. There may be other pieces of land designated in the past for educational use or 106 agreements that can be called in which they will look at also.

I will keep you updated as soon as I know anything.  (With thanks to April Gold - Deputy Head)

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A message from Neena Gill Labour MEP

It is with a heavy heart that I write to you following the disappointing result of the EU Referendum.

Before I talk about what is next for Britain I want to say a huge Thank You. I really appreciate the help of everyone from across the region who attended rallies, phoned voters, knocked doors, delivered leaflets and even had conversations at the pub. I hope that all of you who volunteered, many of whom came out for the first time, are not too disheartened by the result and will work with your local parties in future to get a Labour Government and more Local authorities. This referendum was close and we must now make sure the voice of the 48% are not ignored.

But the decision has been made and Britain is taking a leap in the unknown. The shock-waves have been felt across the globe, but in the UK it’s like a tsunami. We have seen the pound collapse to a 31 year low against the dollar and a fall against the euro. $3 trillion was wiped off the global stock market in 2 days after June 23rd. We went from being the 5th largest economy in the world to the 6th overnight.  For many of us the summer holidays have just got a lot more expensive and with consumer confidence so low - there are real worries of a recession in early 2017.

The disappointment in losing the referendum nationally was made harder because the results fared no better in the West Midlands. Looking at the results from across the region they followed the national trend; more economically deprived areas voted in higher numbers to leave. It was an extremely disappointing but not unsurprising result.

It's becoming clear to many who voted leave that they were made false promises and were told half-truths. Understandably the public is very angry. The leaders of the leave campaign are playing a game of hot potato and the Conservative leadership have absolutely no plan. It appears we will continue in limbo until we have a new Prime Minister. This simply isn't good enough - the people of Britain deserve to know what's next. 

The Labour Party must come together now to ensure that all the issues raised in the campaign are not ignored.  In these times of uncertainty it is important that the Labour Party remain united in their fight for social justice. Sadly, Britain seems to have lost its tolerance and harmony - I utterly condemn this sharp rise in racist attacks.  It’s important that Labour politicians and members up and down the count take initiative and counter this.
It is now time to think about how we will navigate through this period of transition. MEPs are likely continue to work until article 50 has been invoked and for up to 2 years after that. We will therefore continue to make sure we get the best deal for British people and the West Midlands. 

I hope you are able to take a break from political turmoil and have an an enjoyable summer. I will be in touch in the Autumn with further updates.

Warm Regards


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Rugby Labour Newsletters

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Labour In for Britain: Ed and Harriet in Birmingham

Join Ed Miliband and Harriet Harman in Birmingham tomorrow 

As Polling Day approaches join Ed and Harriet as they make the case for all of us to Vote Remain


As we enter the last few days of the Referendum campaign it is as vital as ever that Labour voters hear the positive case for voting to Remain in the European Union from the Labour Party. 

As part of this Ed Miliband and Harriet Harman will be coming to Birmingham tomorrow afternoon for an event at 3pm to make the case for why we are all better off voting to Remain in the EU.

If you would like to attend please RSVP on our website here.

Once you have RSVP'd we will send you the venue details.

Don't delay, places are limited so please RSVP immediately if you would like to attend!


 West Midlands Labour IN for Britain





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Save Oakfield update: 11am 18th June

Today Local Councillors had an opportunity to do what they do best: Support our local community in the issues that matter to them.  Labour Councillors Steve Birkett, Maggie O'Rourke, Ish Mistry and new Councillor Kieren Brown offered their support to the Save Oakfield community campaign. 

Maggie O'Rouke who has been involved from the outset gave interviews to Rugby FM!  

Today saw a great turn out of over 100+ people who chanted Save OakField!!  

The protesters then formed a Human chain to show their community solidarity with the hope that the Co-op will live by its ethos of being at the heart of the community and listen to them in their wish; To Save Oakfield.  This has been a long fought campaign by the community supported every step of the way by Maggie, Ish and Steve...










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Rugby Labour offers its respects to Jo Cox

Just a short line to say that Jo and her family are in our thoughts.  Her determination for involvement in life and its issues is a motivation to us all. 

Thank you Jo.

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This weekend could be the last weekend the community can access Oakfield Rec for the foreseeable future. Save Oakfield Group will be holding a Human Chain event on Saturday 18th June at 11 o'clock and have invited local and regional press along to cover the story. 
Head of Rugby Borough Council, Councillor Michael Stokes, has been quoted in local newspapers and appeared on regional radio discussing Oakfield, the Co-op and the comments they have made. Michael says that he has written to Co-op Chief Executive, Ali Kurji, directly to request a meeting. Councillor Stokes feels that Mr Kurji may not have been advised by his legal team & planning agent that offers to purchase Oakfield have been made, but we understand that no response has been received as yet. 
We are not surprised that the Heart of England Co-op has ignored the request, given the extraordinary level of arrogance that they have displayed in the last 20 months. 
As has become apparent from the articles in the Rugby Advertiser, they have succeeded where many other media have failed, by extracting a quote from the Heart of England Co-op. We have therefore contacted the Rugby Advertiser, asking them if they can establish why the Co-op think it's acceptable to not even acknowledge requests from the Council. We have also asked them to attempt to negotiate a meeting between Rugby Borough Council and the Heart of England Co-op on our behalf, with a view to bringing this situation to a close. 
Should no agreement between the Council and the Co-op be reached, the children's play equipment will be removed by June 22nd as requested by the Co-Op legal team. The Co-op have indicated that the fence will go up on the very next day. One suspects it isn't entirely coincidental that they have chosen the 23rd June to erect the fence knowing that the media will be otherwise distracted with the European Referendum. The expression "a good day to bury bad news" springs to mind. 
However, the fence being assembled does not mark the end of this dispute but rather the start of another chapter. 
Save Oakfield Group is strongly of the belief that the Co-op will be unsuccessful if they pursue with this appeal, and that the reasons behind them erecting a fence will be dimly viewed by the Planning Inspectorate just as the threat to do so was by the local Councillors on the Planning Committee. We remain committed to saving the field and will be pressing for the necessary actions that will result in the removal of the fence once it is clear that planning permission will not be granted. 
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Hillmorton, Paddox & Eastlands Labour Newsletter - Summer 2016

Dear Members & supporters - 

Here is the summer 2016 Newsletter: for Hillmorton, Paddox and Eastlands

Other Wards will follow shortly.

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Union flag and flags of the world unite together

Ramesh Srivastava - Labour Cllr would like to let you know there is a multi faith service at St Andrews Church for the 11th June at 5pm of which he is a representative.
Different faith communities representatives will play and bring flags together from all over the world to join with the Union flag.
“The ministers and civic dignitaries will process in. Flags from diverse countries, together with the Union Jack, are brought down the aisle by representatives from different countries in Rugby.”
There is also a commemorative book at St Andrews Church to send Birthday wishes to Her Majesty and People have been signing the book in church
I also attach poster for the Queens Birthday celebration at St Andrews Church on 10th June 10.30 am. Please come and join us and wish her Majesty a Happy Birthday.
Thanks and hope to see you there!
Ramesh Srivastava (Ram)
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