IWA Manifesto Raises Profile of Waterway Issues Among Newly Elected MPs14 May 2015
By the time the General Election took place on 7th May, pledges of support for IWA’s Manifesto were approaching three hundred names.
Support for IWA’s Manifesto came from parliamentary candidates from all the main parties across the length and breadth of Britain. The number of pledges had more than doubled in the final two weeks leading up to the General Election, as members across the country embraced the campaign by contacting their local candidates.
Among the candidates pledging their support were two former Waterway Ministers, three former Secretaries of State, and the leader of one of the main parties.
The IWA Manifesto identified five key points that the Association was asking future Members of Parliament to support should they be successfully elected. The five points are protecting waterways heritage, building a relationship with waterway groups, joining the All Party Parliamentary Group for the Waterways, supporting the transfer of navigations currently managed by the Environment Agency to Canal & River Trust and supporting the provision of new affordable off-line moorings.
Thank you to IWA branch committee members and many individual members around the country who took the opportunity to contact candidates and talk to them in person, often at waterway locations or on board boats. Pledges of support were received from well over half of all the parliamentary constituencies with navigable waterways in England & Wales.
Of the 289 candidates who signed up to the IWA Manifesto, 39 have now been elected as Members of Parliament, and IWA is now making arrangements to meet these and all other new MPs with navigable waterways in their constituencies. These MPs will be invited to a Reception at the House of Commons later in the summer, where they will have the opportunity to discuss waterway issues with IWA representatives. The five key points from the IWA Manifesto will be discussed in more detail, and the MPs will all be encouraged to join the All Party Parliamentary Group for the Waterways.