06 OCT 2015


Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage is set to host an event next month which will encourage employers to make the most of the talent that exists amongst disabled people in the local area.

The Disability Confident event is part of a Department for Work and Pensions initiative to help get disabled people into work. It will ensure businesses across Gosport, Stubbington, Lee-on-the-Solent and Hill Head understand the financial, operational and social benefits of being Disability Confident employers.

Speaking ahead of the event, Caroline said:

"Disabled people have a huge amount to offer local businesses which is why I am so keen to encourage employers to understand the business benefits of taking on disabled job seekers.

I'm hoping that my Disability Confident event will promote a greater appreciation of how employees with physical disabilities and those with learning difficulties can be a great asset to employers and to ensure that disabled people living in our area have the opportunities they need to fulfil their potential and realise their aspirations."

The event is taking place at St Vincent College on Friday 13th November and is open to employers across Gosport, Stubbington, Lee-on-the-Solent and Hill Head. For more information and to register, please contact Caroline Dinenage on caroline.dinenage.mp@parliament.uk or 0207 219 7078.

06 OCT 2015


Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage visited Harrison Primary school in Fareham to find out more about the Pioneer Teaching Alliance and the School Centre for Initial Teacher Training (SCITT)

The Fareham and Gosport Primary SCITT, run a Primary PGCE course where trainee teachers spend four days a week in schools across the area, working alongside an expert class teacher, whilst meeting together at a partner school once a week to work towards a qualified teaching status. 23 trainee teachers took the course last year and 100% of them have gained employment for the start of the 2015 school year, mostly within Fareham and Gosport Schools.

They are now recruiting next years' trainees and keen to hear from anyone in the local area with a degree qualification who is thinking about a career in teaching.

The Pioneer Teaching Alliance has been in place for 4 years and has been recognised for its impact on school improvement across Fareham and Gosport. The Department for Education has identified that work undertaken by the Alliance has improved outcomes for young people in the area.

Caroline commented after the visit:

"Education is vitally important so it is lovely to see the schools of Gosport and Fareham working together to try and improve standards in our local schools.

We are always on the look out for more great teachers in our area and the SCITT course delivers a winning combination of valuable practical experience along with excellent training and support."

Carolyn Clarke Executive Headteacher of Harrison Primary School & Director of Pioneer Teaching Alliance said:

"It was great to work with Caroline on Friday, you can see how passionate she is about schools and education for young people and we are looking forward to working with her further in the near future."

For more information or if you are interested in the Primary PCGE please visit www.pioneeralliance.co.uk.

02 OCT 2015


Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage visited both Gosport and Fareham women's refuges today.

Southern Domestic Abuse Service (SDAS) provides services to women, children and men who have experienced or who are experiencing emotional, physical or sexual abuse in their relationships. They manage refuges offering support and temporary accommodation to women and children who are escaping domestic abuse as well as offering outreach to women, children and men not staying in the refuge but still in need of advice, support and information.

Caroline met with the residents at both the Gosport and Fareham refuges as well as the support workers and the outreach workers who support domestic abuse victims in our communities.

Caroline commented after the visit:

"We must do all we can in Gosport and around the country to protect women who are vulnerable to domestic violence. The work that Southern Domestic Abuse Service does is vital to many individuals across our area.

It was brilliant to see the help and support that domestic abuse sufferers can get and how they can turn their lives around. The services they provide to everyone who is affected can be lifesaving!"

Claire Chatwin, chief executive of SDAS said:

"We were delighted that Caroline was able to visit both the Gosport and Fareham refuges and meet residents and staff to find out more about the vital services we provide to women and their children. A refuge is a place where women can be sure they are safe, and where they can access emotional and practical support from staff who understand what they have been through.

Caroline was also able to meet staff that deliver services to women, children and men living in the local community and find out more about Southern Domestic Abuse Services to victims and survivors we are able to support to remain safely in their own homes. It is important that we are able to continue to provide a range of services to meet the needs of all women, children, young people and men affected by domestic abuse"

If you are affected by domestic abuse please contact SDAS on 01329 285375 or for more information please visit http://www.southerndas.org/.

01 OCT 2015


Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage has welcomed new figures showing that 130 people in Gosport have been supported to start their own business since April 2011 thanks to the Government's New Enterprise Allowance Scheme.

The allowance – which supports people on out of work benefits to start their own business – has helped more than 73,000 people across the country set up businesses since it was introduced in April 2011.

The support available to people starts with help from a business mentor to develop their business idea. Then, once they have got the business up and running, and have moved off benefits, they are eligible for 26 weeks of financial support as they get their business going. To date, 90 people in Gosport have received mentoring support while 40 have successfully established a new business.

Commenting on the figures, Caroline said:

"I'm so pleased that people in Gosport have been able to get off of benefits and realise their dream of starting their own business and being their own boss. Small enterprises are a hugely important part of our community and vital to local jobs.

"Supporting small businesses is an important part of the Government's commitment to backing working people. There's certainly more to do, but these figures show that this support is giving people the promise of a brighter future. Each new job these businesses create in Gosport represents another family with the security and dignity of regular work and a regular pay packet."

If you have a great business idea and are interested in the money and support offered by the New Enterprise Allowance Scheme, talk to your local Jobcentre Plus adviser. More information about eligibility can be found here.

29 SEP 2015


Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage has welcomed an exclusive opportunity for Gosport businesses to join the South Coast Marine Cluster and get involved with international maritime trading events.

Portsmouth and Plymouth City Councils have received funding to help local marine businesses attend world-leading marine and maritime trade events this Autumn and Winter at a very reduced fee with grants available, saving up to 80% on normal prices. An example of an event on offer is 'Oceans 2015' – North America's premier conference and trade show focusing on advances in marine technology.

Gosport marine companies, as part of the Solent's Marine Industry, are eligible to apply.

Commenting on the funding scheme, Caroline said:

"Joining the South Coast Marine Cluster and attending these prestigious worldwide events offers an exciting opportunity for Gosport companies to promote their business overseas and potentially expand into an international market.

"In an increasingly globalised industry it is vital that the Solent region, a hub of maritime excellence, can contend with international competitors. It is therefore wonderful news that funding is being made available to help businesses meet the costs of travelling overseas to promote their products and services."

To see all of the events available and to apply for funding please click here

25 SEP 2015


Many local people have recently expressed concern about a change in the coaches' contracts at Planet Ice, Gosport and fears of possible price increases and a potential closure of the rink. Caroline met with a representative of Planet Ice her constituents concerns.

After the meetings, Caroline said:

"I fully understand the concerns that people had regarding the future of ice skaters and Gosport Ice Rink and met with Planet Ice to discuss the issues which had been brought to my attention. I hope that users of the Rink will find the company's response reassuring."

Planet Ice has answered a number of questions posed by Caroline in a summary document which can be found here.

22 SEP 2015


Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage has welcomed news from the Department for Communities and Local Government about changes to planning policy, which help to restore fairness to the system and ensure all communities are treated equally.

Two key reforms have been introduced. Firstly, anyone from the travelling community who no longer travels will have their planning application considered in the same way as any other member of the settled population. This means that special planning rules designed to support England's travelling community will only apply to those who lead a genuine travelling lifestyle.

Secondly, greater protection for the Green Belt has been authorised. Councils must now place stricter limits on the number of new traveller sites developed in open countryside, particularly in Sites of Special Scientific Interest, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and National Parks.

Commenting on the new planning policy, Caroline said:

"I think it is vitally important that we protect open spaces on the Gosport peninsula by providing councils and the police with a range of appropriate powers.

Moreover, it is right that today, when housing is in short supply, planning applications are considered in a fair and just manner. For these reasons I welcome the DCLG's new Planning Policy."

You can find more information on the new Planning Policy here.

17 SEP 2015


Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage is taking her advice surgeries into the heart of local communities once again this September.

Following the success of previous open surgeries, Caroline will be running a series of sessions throughout the constituency over the coming week. The surgeries, which are open to all constituents without the need for an appointment, will be taking place in Peel Common, Gosport High Street, Bridgemary, Elson and Stubbington.

The September tour is part of Caroline's commitment to listening to and helping all residents, regardless of where they live in the constituency.

Caroline commented on the surgery tour, saying:

"Every single one of my constituents – from the tip of the Gosport Peninsula to the Borough of Fareham – has the right to talk to their MP, raise problems and receive advice.

This surgery tour is a great way for me to hear from those who might not think of coming to my regular surgeries on Stoke Road, and I'd encourage residents from throughout the constituency to pop in and have a chat!"

Full details of the open surgeries are as follows:

Monday 28th September – Carisbrooke Arms from 5.30pm-7.30pm

Tuesday 29th September – Gosport High Street Market Stall from 9.30am-11am

Tuesday 29th September – Bridgemary Library from 11.30am-1pm

Tuesday 29th September – Elson Library from 2pm-3.30pm

Thursday 1st October – Stubbington Library from 9.30am-11am

Please call Caroline's constituency office on 02392 522 121 with any questions about the surgeries.

14 SEP 2015


Local MP Caroline Dinenage visited K&Go holidays and the Solent Day Care Centre on Friday.

K&Go Holidays are a specialist holiday company for adults with physical or learning disabilities, running both day trips and holidays for people across the South Coast. The Old Railway is the new home of K&Go Holidays.

The Solent Day Care Centre in Stoke Road is in its fifth year and provides day care for adults with learning disabilities. They also have a charity shop, Dependent on U, on Brockhurst Road where the users of the Day Care Centre can learn life skills.

After the visit, Caroline said:

"I was delighted to meet the staff and users of these two important services in the Gosport area. So many volunteers work really hard to support those who need it - it's another fantastic example of the strength of our local community.

It was interesting to speak to the management about what they have achieved to date and their plans for the future."

For more information about K&Go Holidays please visit www.kandgo.holiday and for more information about Solent Day Care please visit www.solentdaycare.co.uk

14 SEP 2015


Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage has welcomed the Inspector's report on the Gosport Borough Local Plan which recommends that the Stokesmead site in Anglesey should be classified as open space.

The site is owned by Abbey Homes who Caroline met with at the end of last year, along with the Chief Executive of Gosport Borough Council and the Chair of Anglesey Conservation Group. Abbey Homes had identified Stokesmead as a site for a future housing development, however local residents were strongly opposed to the site being built on.

Now the Inspector responsible for reviewing the Gosport Borough Local Plan 2011-2029 has stated that the site should be classified as open space as a result of a number of reasons including a high risk of flooding. The Inspector has recommended that the site should instead be used as a children's play area as proposed by Gosport Borough Council.

Commenting, Caroline said:

"I'm so pleased to hear that Stokesmead looks set to be protected from development; it is a very special piece of land which is extremely important to the local community. Given its location near the centre of Alverstoke village it is the perfect location for a play area to be enjoyed by local children and I hope that these plans are able to proceed.

Whilst this is just a recommendation from the Inspector, I hope that the developers see fit to comply with his advice."

The Stokesmead site was bought by Abbey Homes from the National Children's Home in 1984 and since then a number of planning applications have been turned down.

In October 2014, a public meeting was held in St. Mary's Church in October attended by over 200 local residents. Last year, Caroline raised the site's future in the House of Commons, when she asked for a debate on land-banking which prohibits the public use of sites such as Stokesmead.

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