John Glen: I thank my hon. Friend the Member for Morecambe and Lunesdale (David Morris) for securing this debate, and I commend him for his eloquence, emotion and seriousness of purpose. It is interesting to hear of the number of memorial plaques and scrolls that were issued to the families of the fallen, reminding us of the huge losses suffered by Britain and the then empire. As we have heard, the...
John Glen: I am grateful to my hon. Friend for her intervention. She has made the case for the importance of local museums all over the country, and the enormous impact that they can have as communities seek to do the right thing by those who came before them and remember appropriately the sacrifices that were made. It is very difficult to categorise the appeal of the plaques to their owners 100 years...
John Glen: I thank my hon, and gallant Friend for what he has said. Whenever I think of him, I think of his service and the sacrifices made by him and by those alongside him. Once again, he has made a very important point. There are also two invaluable online resources that help to commemorate those who fell. They provide more information about the person commemorated, and give those in possession of a...
John Glen: It is a pleasure to serve under your chairmanship, Ms Dorries. I thank my right hon. Friend the Member for Wantage (Mr Vaizey) for bringing this matter before us today. I would also like to acknowledge the excellent contributions. We have had 11 Back-Bench speeches and several interventions, and I will try to respond to some of those, but I also want to respond to this excellent report. I...
John Glen: Data from Visit Britain show that 2016 was a record-breaking year for tourism, with 38 million inbound visits, and the Government are working hard with Visit Britain and the sector more broadly to achieve the aim of 40 million visits per year by 2020.
John Glen: I commend my hon. Friend for his ambition, in his first three months in the House, and I certainly pay tribute to Mansfield Town football club. I would say to him and to all hon. Members that there are such opportunities, particularly looking at the Discover England Fund, which specialises in supporting tourism products outside London. I would draw his attention to that in the first instance.
John Glen: I certainly recognise the many attractions of the right hon. Gentleman’s part of the world, and I visited Liverpool during the recess. With respect to visas, I will be having a roundtable discussion with many representatives from the tourism sector in two weeks’ time, and I will be looking to take this forward across Government in the coming weeks.
John Glen: I have experienced that difficulty in my constituency, and I am very sympathetic to what my hon. Friend says. Perhaps I could have a conversation with him to work out where those particular spots are and approach Highways England to see whether we can get a resolution.
John Glen: I thank the hon. Lady for her question. The Secretary of State and I visited Edinburgh during the recess, and we saw the many attractions, particularly the festival. I certainly listen very carefully to representations from across the tourism sector about what we can do to encourage more visitors, and I take her point on board.
John Glen: Amending the listed status policy in the way that my hon. Friend suggests will not be possible, but the installation of community ATMs in listed phone boxes is possible provided listed building consent is granted by the relevant planning authority.
John Glen: I commend my hon. Friend on his determination to get this sorted. I will work with him and the residents of Hartley Wintney to look at what the local authority can do, because it is the prime mover and can provide the listed building consent that he seeks.
John Glen: My Department has regular conversations about shared interests with the National Trust, such as conservation, participation and world heritage. I will be meeting Dame Helen Ghosh, director general of the National Trust, next month.
John Glen: That is certainly a matter I will need to raise with the director general of the National Trust. Such matters are for National Trust members, and the National Trust has its own policies in place. I believe that a resolution is going to its annual general meeting in the autumn. This is a matter for it to resolve.
John Glen: I thank my hon. Friend. I do not know about my bodyboarding, but I certainly enjoyed visiting Watergate Bay, which is a fine destination in Cornwall. Volunteers across so many cultural, arts and heritage organisations do a wonderful job. It is great that they can contribute and offer so much up and down the country.
John Glen: This is a matter for the Charity Commission, as the independent regulator of charities. I am aware of the controversy reported this week, and I welcome the commission’s attempts to resolve this long-standing and complex issue.
John Glen: My Department and arm’s length bodies are committed to ensuring that our heritage is protected for future generations and accessible to all. The Heritage Lottery Fund issues awards to projects that make heritage relevant to everyone, regardless of their personal background, and actively challenges grantees to reach beyond the traditional heritage audience.
John Glen: I am familiar with the case that the hon. Lady mentions. Clifford’s Tower is a particularly difficult site to deal with, but I shall be happy to meet her to discuss her specific concerns, and I will take them to English Heritage directly, if that will help.
John Glen: I congratulate my hon. Friend on her election to the DCMS Committee and endorse everything that she says on this matter. I will be looking at progress as these improvements proceed, and it was a pleasure to visit her constituency in the recess.
John Glen: I support all the bids as they reach the final stages. In two weeks’ time they will be submitted to the panel, which is chaired by Phil Redmond, and I am watching the process closely. I look forward to making an announcement on the successful city at the end of the year.
John Glen: I am looking carefully at the options. As I said, I will be meeting representatives of the tourism sector in two weeks’ time. I hope that the Discover England fund can be extended to encourage more initiatives such as the one my hon. Friend mentions, because they are transformational to local tourism economies.