Peterborough will continue to buck the trend with ambitious infrastructure projects, new housing, free schools . . .
t’s that time of year again! Yes – rash predictions of the next 12 months. It’s probably a forlorn effort given that none of us really predicted the disaster in the Eurozone this past year or freak weather events across the world, although we probably all could have foreseen the wonderful day of national celebration which was William and Kate’s wedding day in April.
On the basis that I’m not the world’s greatest sports fan or particularly interested in TV soaps, I’ll stick with what I know (at least a bit) about, as I soon enter my eighth year as Member of Parliament for Peterborough: Politics and government in our city and Westminster.
Firstly, the economy nationally will still struggle but on the basis that the darkest hour is before the dawn, I believe it will be on the rebound by the middle of 2013 and unemployment will start to fall. Peterborough will continue to buck the trend, with ambitious infrastructure projects, new housing, free schools and better quality shops and restaurants in the city centre – as well as more business relocations, on account of our role not just as an environment city but as a transport, logistics and service hub – as well as a specialist engineering centre.
The Conservatives will retain control of the city council in May despite very modest Labour gains – a testament to long term vision and value for money at local level. More opposition voices will no doubt keep them on their toes. Nationally, Ed Miliband will still fail to exhibit star quality and voter approval despite the beginnings of a debate on saying sorry for past mistakes and outlining a coherent alternative to this government.
The European Union will be an irritant for many voters and politicians in this country – but the tide has turned on its grandiose plans to control and dominate our national life without the benefit of a democratic mandate, thanks to David Cameron’s veto on December 9.
The Liberal Democrats will continue to display a teenage petulance becoming of a perennial opposition party – but the smarter Lib Dems will slowly understand that they have a real stake in the ultimate success of the Coalition Government and its priority of tackling the deficit - not badmouthing it. Nick Clegg will remain at the helm.
Pretty much all our city councillors will be consistent in their hard work and commitment to our area – and are rarely thanked for it!
I may be completely wrong – but only as much as the next man or woman on the green benches.
In the meantime to all my constituents, friends and family: Have a happy, prosperous and fulfilling 2012.
STEWART JACKSON MP