Statement on UK nuclear deterrent programme

In light of yesterday's vote in the House of Commons regarding the UK's Successor programme, I would to take the opportunity to comment on the thoughts and considerations that have consolidated my view on this matter.

 

First and foremost, I have a strong belief that the first priority of any Government is national security, without it nothing can function. With the peace of mind that comes from knowing we are protected by all of our defences, be it our armed forces or the country’s nuclear deterrent we are free to go about our everyday business safe in the knowledge we have adequate and appropriate measures in place to protect us.

 

As with all decisions, particularly ones of this magnitude, I can honestly say they are not made lightly. The responsibly as an MP is huge and is something that is never far from my mind. My job and indeed my drive is to ensure that Derby North has a strong voice and that every opportunity to improve the lives of the residents of our wonderful city is taken full advantage of. But what sort of life would we all lead if what we all, quite rightly take for granted everyday was suddenly something we had to either stop and think about or stop doing all together? Parents taking the Children to school, commuting to work, going on the weekly shop are amongst the many, many things we all do without a second thought, simply because we know, perhaps subconsciously that our defence’s will protect us. This for me, the hum drum, everyday activity that forms fundamental parts of our lives would be under threat should we decide not to continue with our nuclear programme.

 

In Derby there are many jobs associated with this industry to consider too. In particular with this decision, which will see the renewal of the current Vanguard class ballistic missile submarines, with a new class of four submarines, which will have their propulsion systems built at Rolls Royce’s Raynesway site. Not only are the jobs for those Engineers who will be directly involved in production now secure but also those in a whole raft of other smaller companies in the supply chain, many which employ local people, all of who make a huge contribution to our local economy and will now be able to do so for years to come. 

 

Of course, like many I wish there were no need for such measures to be in place and I dearly hope and pray we never have to use them, however I fear they are and have been for some time a necessary evil. I absolutely concur with the recent statement from our Prime Minister, Theresa May who said: “It is impossible to say for certain that no extreme threats will emerge in the next 30 or 40 years to threaten our security and way of life. And it would be a gross irresponsibility to lose the ability to meet such threats by discarding the ultimate insurance against those risks in the future.

 

My wish is for everyone to live their lives free from fear and indeed uncertainty and it is my belief that by having these measures in place, we are securing jobs, safety and security for generations to come.