Stirling and Clackmannanshire City Region Deal

Part of Finance Committee – in the House of Commons at 10:00 pm on 18th February 2019.

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Photo of Stephen Kerr Stephen Kerr Conservative, Stirling 10:00 pm, 18th February 2019

I absolutely commend the council teams, and I will talk about Stirling Council if I have time.

We have natural resources in Stirling and Clackmannanshire, and the masterplan is already delivering a combined heat and power project in the city centre that derives heat from our sewage treatment works to warm commercial and public sector buildings throughout Stirling. Beyond that, geothermal, wind, hydro and solar will all play a part, and the opportunity for innovation and commercialisation is unlimited. Skills and innovation go together not only in ensuring the creation of job opportunities that can be accessed by all but in specific schemes in the neighbouring area of Clackmannanshire. The skills that businesses need can be delivered in the local area, and everyone can benefit. This joined-up working between the two areas allows capital sums to be best utilised across Stirling and Clackmannanshire, recognising how interconnected the two areas are.

I now come to the meat of what I want to say. Stirling is ready to go. We have an engaged and energised private sector that is ready to invest, and we have a local authority that stands ready to deliver. All the local parties in Stirling share a commitment to delivering the city region deal. We just need to sign off on the business case. The individual projects are well thought out and planned, and I am sure the Minister will want to assure the House tonight that the UK Government are fully energised behind the Stirling and Clackmannanshire deal.

Waiting for perfection and for everything to be planned out across all areas of the deal will only delay the creation of jobs and prosperity in Stirling. There is no perfect slate of projects, and it is essential that we get things moving so that we can deliver. We need to see hi-vis jackets, hard hats and cranes on Stirling’s skyline. It is time for us to start the work.