Government’s New Policy Will Block Gillian Rees-Mogg’s Somerset Solar Farm

During the leadership election Liz Truss consistently got loud rounds of applause from Tory members over her plan to ban solar projects on farmland, which she condemned as “a blight on the landscape” and “depressing”. On Monday, No. 10’s spokesman reiterated this policy to the media:

“In September [Truss] said she doesn’t think we should be putting solar panels on productive agricultural land, as well as the energy security issue we face a food security issue.”

Details of the new policy are scarce, though it’s believed DEFRA Secretary Ranil Jayawardena wants to widen the definition of “best and most versatile” land to prohibit solar farms from being built.

At this point in the story we head over to Bristol, where just 2.6 miles away from Jacob Rees-Mogg’s house a 58-hectare solar farm development is being proposed on land in Bishop Sutton. It’ll be a nice little money-spinner for those owning the land.

Jacob Rees-Mogg’s own council – Bath and North East Somerset – acknowledge in a document that the development will expend “agricultural land”, “currently used for grazing”. So clearly Jacob would be unlikely to support the plans…

The biggest problem for Jacob Rees-Mogg? Much of the planned land for the development is owned by none other than his mother, Gillian Rees-Mogg…

mdi-timer 12 October 2022 @ 15:30 12 Oct 2022 @ 15:30 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Who’s Backing Who: Monday Morning State of Play

Here we go: the race begins today. The 1922 Committee will meet late this afternoon to formally launch the process of selecting Britain’s next Prime Minister; the big question hovering over the meeting is what – not if – number of backers they’ll increase the qualification threshold to. Currently eight, however with 11 candidates plus a likely Priti attempt it’s expected it could increase anywhere from 20 backers to 36. A tenth of the parliamentary party…

The state of play this morning looks almost the same as last night, albeit after a frantic weekend – Guido disputes it was anything of the sort – by the end of which 44% of MPs have backed a horse, it’s unsurprising movement’s slowing down.

Saying that, Liz Truss has managed to draw into joint third place after her campaign launch in the Telegraph last night. Kwasi Kwarteng was the big name to back her, however it’s a triple ministerial byline in The Times from Ranil Jayawardena, Wendy Morton and Vicky Ford who have helped her overtake Nadhim. Harking back to the now-infamous 2019 triple Boris-backing-byline by Rishi, Jenrick and Dowden…

Rishi remains well in the lead, beating second place Penny Mordaunt by 13 backers.  Before the 1922 Committee writes the rules for the contest, there’s the small business of electing a new executive – a process that, just a week ago, was dominated by talk about whether there’d be enough anti-Boris members to force a rule change. It’s unlikely Sir Graham will be leaving his post…

Looking ahead to the rest of the week, nominations must be submitted to Sir Graham by 6pm on Tuesday, with voting due to start on Wednesday after PMQs. The first result will be announced early on Wednesday evening. Thursday, another vote will be held ad infinitum until we have two final candidates to go before the Tory membership. Strap in for another mad week…

The backers in full can be found here:

mdi-timer 11 July 2022 @ 07:41 11 Jul 2022 @ 07:41 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Trade Minister’s Jim Hacker Euro-Sausage Moment

Trade minister Ranil Jayawardena was in full flow during Commons questioning today, railing against Europe’s planned sausage war in Northern Ireland:

“In respect of the issues around meat, it is wrong that anyone should be threatening the British sausage. We will stand up for the British sausage and no-one will ever be able to destroy it.”

Very ‘Yes, Minister’…

mdi-timer 10 June 2021 @ 11:27 10 Jun 2021 @ 11:27 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Boris Appoints CCHQ Vice Chairs

Boris has put the finishing touches on his reshuffle this afternoon by appointing a fresh batch of Tory MPs to support new Party Chairman James Cleverly in CCHQ. Paul Scully was appointed Deputy Chairman last week alongside Helen Whately who remains in the role, now six further MPs have been appointed Parliamentary Vice Chairmen:

  • Andrew Bowie
  • Sir David Evennett
  • Helen Grant
  • Ranil Jayawardena
  • Caroline Johnson
  • Alec Shelbrooke (reappointed)

No word yet on who’s got the “youth” brief. Or whether they’ll be younger than former youth Vice Chair Nigel Huddlestone at 48 years young…

mdi-timer 5 August 2019 @ 16:50 5 Aug 2019 @ 16:50 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Human Rights Weren’t Invented in 1998
“King John rode from his castle here to Runnymede where he met the barons to sign the Magna Carta. The principles enshrined in Magna Carta; the primacy of the rule of the law; that none shall be taxed without representation and importantly the freedom of the English church, are seen as the first glimmers of Human Rights. They are principles that bolstered my desire to enter public service. The House will be aware that Human Rights were not conceived in 1998 they existed for centuries…”
New Tory MP Ranil Jayawardena hits the nail on the head during his maiden speech.
mdi-timer 3 June 2015 @ 16:32 3 Jun 2015 @ 16:32 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments