Dr Julia Reid MEP was pleased to spend time in Cornwall recently meeting with the public and speaking with people from various businesses and organisations.

Julia visited the Tourist Office in St Austell to spend some time with the staff there, and learned that local Businessman Andy Ward pays for this service out of his own pocket due to the lack of funding the office receives. Julia and David Mathews, UKIP PC for St Austell and Newquay, talked about the many issues Cornwall faces each year, with tourism being at the top of the list. Both Julia and David were very disappointed that the Cornwall Council have cut the Visit Cornwall budget despite the fact it won a national award for excellence last year on the understanding that the private sector will fulfil the standards set by the Visit Cornwall Team.

Julia and David also spoke about planning and housing, in particular discussing UKIPs policy to prioritise building on brownfield sites and to protect the green belt. Both agreed that keeping Cornwall green was a priority.

Julia was also pleased to visit STAK, ‘St Austell Community Kitchen’, and to meet with some of the clients. Finding out how the “bedroom tax” and cuts in other services was affecting them, Julia saw first- hand the effects austerity has had on the normal men and women of the South West. Julia and David then enjoyed lunch at the Rest and Play Centre in Roche.

Next on the agenda was a visit to Newquay Fire Station. Among the topics discussed was the planned cuts to pension schemes. Julia and David asked if there were any other planned cut backs and were told that 18 jobs in Cornwall would be cut, meaning added pressure on the fire station and crew.

All in all, this was a very informative and enjoyable visit to Cornwall. Thank you to all those who Julia met with for the insights and discussions shared during the visit.