Jake Berry: I am very grateful for the opportunity to make this, my maiden speech, today. I understand that maiden speeches-first speeches in Parliament-are very like your first child: easier to conceive than to deliver. Rossendale and Darwen, the constituency I have the honour of representing, was previously held by Ms Janet Anderson for 18 years. During that period Ms Anderson was a hard-working...
Jake Berry: rose-
Jake Berry: Does the hon. Lady agree that, after 13 years of a Labour Government, it is a disgrace that one in five people under the age of 24 is out of work? Does she think that has been a price worth paying for having 13 years of a Labour Government?
Jake Berry: May I say that the announced 50,000 new apprenticeships are hugely welcome in my constituency, as Rossendale and Darwen has many young people working in the manufacturing sector? Given that an apprenticeship should be only the start of a journey of lifelong learning, what steps have been taken to encourage those who have completed an apprenticeship to go on to university?
Jake Berry: Last weekend, I visited Pets Corner on Bank street in Rawtenstall, which is a town in my constituency. Pets Corner will microchip dogs for less than £10. Does my hon. Friend agree that as the cost of microchipping has fallen to such an extent, and given that, unlike a dog licence, it is a whole-life solution, now might be the time to consider compulsory microchipping?
Jake Berry: I am sure that many hon. Members will have noticed that the Members' dining rooms are frequented by mice. Will the Leader of the House agree to a debate on whether a tough Lancastrian cat could be obtained from Bleakholt animal sanctuary in Rossendale to repel those rodent invaders?
Jake Berry: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether British Waterways plans to compensate (a) boat owners and (b) business owners affected by the temporary closure of a stretch of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal.
Jake Berry: I first congratulate my hon. Friend the Member for Witham (Priti Patel) and the hon. Members for Livingston (Graeme Morrice) and for Hyndburn (Graham Jones) on their maiden speeches. The hon. Member for Hyndburn's constituency adjoins mine, and in what I hope will be an afternoon of agreement I agree with him that the industrial revolution started in east Lancashire. In fact, I will refer to...
Jake Berry: I wish to present a petition on behalf of the Friends of Sunnyhurst Wood and others. It records the support of the users of Sunnyhurst wood to stop the "storage of silt from the Paddling Pond and Moat Lake" being allowed to form "large unsightly mounds over long periods." Following is the full text of the petition: [The Petition of the Friends of Sunnyhurst Wood and others, Declares that...
Jake Berry: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what progress her Department is making in processing the backlog of asylum applications made prior to 2010.
Jake Berry: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will take steps to ensure that the Leeds and Liverpool Canal remains open; and if she will allocate funding to increase the level of maintenance of that canal.
Jake Berry: To ask the Secretary of State for Education over what period schools may apply to become academy schools.
Jake Berry: To ask the Secretary of State for Education whether he plans to enable all schools to have discretion on whether to follow the national curriculum.
Jake Berry: To ask the Secretary of State for Education according to what criteria the pupil premium will be allocated.
Jake Berry: To ask the Secretary of State for Education whether his Department plans to reduce its expenditure through the termination of (a) area-based and (b) other targeted grants.
Jake Berry: To ask the Secretary of State for Education whether all funding from his Department to assist children from more deprived backgrounds will be routed through the pupil premium.
Jake Berry: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what discussions he has had with ministerial colleagues on implementation of the Government's big society proposals in Northern Ireland.
Jake Berry: To ask the Secretary of State for Education whether he plans to make academy schools subject to the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 2000.
Jake Berry: To ask the Secretary of State for Education whether the Government plans to replace ContactPoint.
Jake Berry: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what steps he plans to take in response to the recommendations of the Social Work Taskforce report.