Jesse Norman Portrait

Jesse Norman

Conservative - Hereford and South Herefordshire

Jesse Norman is not a member of any APPGs
1 Former APPG membership
Rule of Law
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
23rd May 2019 - 16th Sep 2021
Financial Secretary to the Treasury and Paymaster General
23rd May 2019 - 24th Jul 2019
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
12th Nov 2018 - 23rd May 2019
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
14th Jun 2017 - 9th Nov 2018
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
18th Jul 2016 - 14th Jun 2017
Liaison Committee (Commons)
10th Sep 2015 - 19th Jul 2016
Culture, Media and Sport Committee
18th Jun 2015 - 19th Jul 2016
Consolidation Bills (Joint Committee)
6th Dec 2010 - 30th Mar 2015
Treasury Committee
12th Jul 2010 - 30th Mar 2015
Consolidation, &c., Bills (Joint Committee)
6th Dec 2010 - 30th Mar 2015
House of Commons Governance Committee
16th Oct 2014 - 17th Dec 2014


There are no upcoming events identified
Division Votes
Wednesday 22nd June 2022
Health and Personal Social Services
voted Aye - in line with the party majority
One of 106 Conservative Aye votes vs 61 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 215 Noes - 70
Speeches
Tuesday 14th June 2022
Channel 4 Privatisation
On the consultation, my right hon. Friend is absolutely right to say that the Government should not be ducking difficult …
Written Answers
Wednesday 15th June 2022
Channel 4 Television: Privatisation
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment her Department has made of the …
Early Day Motions
None available
Bills
Wednesday 30th June 2021
Supply and Appropriation (Main Estimates) Act 2021
A Bill to authorise the use of resources for the year ending with 31 March 2022; to authorise both the …
Tweets
Wednesday 6th July 2022
18:29
MP Financial Interests
Tuesday 3rd May 2022
1. Employment and earnings
14 April 2022, received £194.43 from HarperCollins Publishers Ltd, Westerhill Road, Bishopbriggs, Glasgow G64 2QT. Hours: no additional hours. (Registered …

Division Voting information

During the current Parliamentary Session, Jesse Norman has voted in 425 divisions, and 1 time against the majority of their Party.

30 Mar 2022 - Health and Care Bill - View Vote Context
Jesse Norman voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 72 Conservative Aye votes vs 175 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 215 Noes - 188
View All Jesse Norman Division Votes

Debates during the 2019 Parliament

Speeches made during Parliamentary debates are recorded in Hansard. For ease of browsing we have grouped debates into individual, departmental and legislative categories.

Sparring Partners
James Murray (Labour (Co-op))
Shadow Financial Secretary (Treasury)
(58 debate interactions)
Alison Thewliss (Scottish National Party)
Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Treasury)
(44 debate interactions)
Wes Streeting (Labour)
Shadow Secretary of State for Health and Social Care
(38 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
HM Treasury
(725 debate contributions)
Department for Education
(7 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Jesse Norman's debates

Hereford and South Herefordshire Petitions

e-Petitions are administered by Parliament and allow members of the public to express support for a particular issue.

If an e-petition reaches 10,000 signatures the Government will issue a written response.

If an e-petition reaches 100,000 signatures the petition becomes eligible for a Parliamentary debate (usually Monday 4.30pm in Westminster Hall).

Petitions with highest Hereford and South Herefordshire signature proportion
Petitions with most Hereford and South Herefordshire signatures
Jesse Norman has not participated in any petition debates

Latest EDMs signed by Jesse Norman

Jesse Norman has not signed any Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Jesse Norman, and are more likely to reflect personal policy preferences.

MPs who are act as Ministers or Shadow Ministers are generally restricted from performing Commons initiatives other than Urgent Questions.


Jesse Norman has not been granted any Urgent Questions

Jesse Norman has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

6 Bills introduced by Jesse Norman

Introduced: 30th June 2021

A Bill to authorise the use of resources for the year ending with 31 March 2022; to authorise both the issue of sums out of the Consolidated Fund and the application of income for that year; and to appropriate the supply authorised for that year by this Act and by the Supply and Appropriation (Anticipation and Adjustments) Act 2021.

This Bill received Royal Assent on Monday 19th July 2021 and was enacted into law.

Introduced: 8th December 2020

A Bill to make provision (including the imposition and regulation of new duties of customs) in connection with goods in Northern Ireland and their movement into or out of Northern Ireland; to make provision amending certain enactments relating to value added tax, excise duty or insurance premium tax; to make provision in connection with the recovery of unlawful state aid in relation to controlled foreign companies; and for connected purposes.

This Bill received Royal Assent on Thursday 17th December 2020 and was enacted into law.

Introduced: 9th July 2020

This Bill received Royal Assent on Wednesday 22nd July 2020 and was enacted into law.

Introduced: 2nd March 2020

A Bill to authorise the use of resources for the years ending with 31 March 2020 and 31 March 2021; to authorise the issue of sums out of the Consolidated Fund for those years; and to appropriate the supply authorised by this Act for the year ending with 31 March 2020.

This Bill received Royal Assent on Monday 16th March 2020 and was enacted into law.

Introduced: 2nd July 2019

A Bil to Authorise the use of resources for the year ending with 31 March 2020; to authorise both the issue of sums out of the Consolidated Fund and the application of income for that year; and to appropriate the supply authorised for that year by this Act and by the Supply and Appropriation (Anticipation and Adjustments) Act 2019.

This Bill received Royal Assent on Wednesday 17th July 2019 and was enacted into law.


A Bill to provide for a programme of research into the costs and benefits of extending eligibility for Child Benefit and Tax Credit entitlement to young people completing apprenticeships; and for connected purposes.


Last Event - 1st Reading: House Of Commons
Tuesday 18th November 2014

Jesse Norman has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


23 Written Questions in the current parliament

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department
2 Other Department Questions
27th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, what assessment his Department has made of the impact on the construction industry in Herefordshire of the housing moratorium issued in October 2019.

I refer my Rt Hon Friend to the answer given to Question UIN 59777 on 28 October 2021.

20th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, what assessment he has made of the potential impact of pollution in the River Wye for (a) local housing, (b) the local environment and (c) levelling up.

The Government is committed to delivering the homes this country needs and is striving to level up all parts of the country. The Government's Get Building Fund, via the Marches LEP, has invested £1 million in the River Wye catchment, to aid the construction of Integrated Wetlands to mitigate the sources of nutrient pollution. This will enable the delivery of 1,385 nutrient neutral dwellings in the catchment.

9th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment her Department has made of the impact of the privatisation of Channel 4 on its annual levels of investment in independent television and film production companies.

The Government consulted extensively on the future of Channel 4, and the views and evidence gathered from a wide range of stakeholders has informed the government’s assessment of any potential impact of a change of ownership. The Government published its sale impact analysis on 28 April.

Channel 4 has done an excellent job in supporting the UK production sector and thereby delivering on one of its founding purposes. Forty years on, independent production in the UK is now booming, with revenues having grown from £500 million in 1995 to £3 billion in 2019. Companies are increasingly less reliant on Public Service Broadcasters (PSBs), including Channel 4 for commissions.

Channel 4 still has an important part to play in supporting the sector and our wider creative economy. Channel 4 will still be required to commission a minimum volume of programming from independent producers, in line with the quotas placed on other PSBs.

Channel 4 has strong relationships with independent producers right across the UK and there is no reason this should change. The Government expects a new owner to want to build on and develop those relationships.

The Government believes that in the long run the UK production ecosystem will benefit from a more sustainable Channel 4. A change of ownership that improves Channel 4’s access to capital could increase spending on production.

9th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate her Department has made of the projected cash return from the privatisation of Channel 4; and on what assumptions that projection has been made.

Channel 4 has a strong reputation for innovative and diverse content, a proactive strategy to be a digital first provider, and huge popularity with a range of audiences, including valuable younger audiences. The Government expects this will appeal to a broad range of different purchasers.

As with the sale of any government asset, any sale of Channel 4 will involve a careful assessment process to ensure value for money for the taxpayer.

9th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what her Department's valuation is of Channel 4 as of 9 June 2022; and on what assumptions that valuation has been made.

Channel 4 has a strong reputation for innovative and diverse content, a proactive strategy to be a digital first provider, and huge popularity with a range of audiences, including valuable younger audiences. The Government expects this will appeal to a broad range of different purchasers.

As with the sale of any government asset, any sale of Channel 4 will involve a careful assessment process to ensure value for money for the taxpayer.

9th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, in what way her Department intends to treat the revenue from any sale of Channel 4.

The Government will look to use some of the proceeds from the sale of Channel 4 to deliver a new creative dividend for the independent production sector.

9th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate her Department has made of the projected (a) economic and (b) social returns from the privatisation of Channel 4; and on what assumptions those projections have been made.

The Government consulted extensively on the future of Channel 4, and the views and evidence gathered from a wide range of stakeholders has informed the Government’s assessment of any potential impact of a change of ownership. The Government published its sale impact analysis on 28 April.

3rd Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps her Department is taking to support the rollout of fibre broadband in Herefordshire.

The government is committed to delivering lightning-fast, reliable broadband to everyone in the UK, including in Herefordshire. Extensive delivery of gigabit-capable broadband is under way in Herefordshire currently through contracts under the government’s Superfast Broadband Programme which are managed by the Fastershire broadband partnership which covers Herefordshire and Gloucestershire.

The government will ensure near-universal access to gigabit broadband through the £5 billion Project Gigabit programme. Given the current active delivery within Herefordshire, the regional supplier procurement for the area has a targeted start date of February - April 2023, before a contract commencement date of January - March 2024. Earlier local supplier procurements are also available as an option. In addition, communities in Herefordshire which are not in scope for commercial coverage are able to use the government’s gigabit voucher scheme to gain early gigabit coverage.

For very hard to reach premises which are unlikely to be cost-effective to reach with fixed gigabit broadband, the government is reviewing the responses to its call for evidence which closed in the summer in order to determine the best possible options for improving broadband connectivity.

Evidence on the impacts of superfast broadband is contained in the Evaluation of the Superfast Broadband Programme.

3rd Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps her Department is taking to help improve internet connections in Herefordshire.

The government is committed to delivering lightning-fast, reliable broadband to everyone in the UK, including in Herefordshire. Extensive delivery of gigabit-capable broadband is under way in Herefordshire currently through contracts under the government’s Superfast Broadband Programme which are managed by the Fastershire broadband partnership which covers Herefordshire and Gloucestershire.

The government will ensure near-universal access to gigabit broadband through the £5 billion Project Gigabit programme. Given the current active delivery within Herefordshire, the regional supplier procurement for the area has a targeted start date of February - April 2023, before a contract commencement date of January - March 2024. Earlier local supplier procurements are also available as an option. In addition, communities in Herefordshire which are not in scope for commercial coverage are able to use the government’s gigabit voucher scheme to gain early gigabit coverage.

For very hard to reach premises which are unlikely to be cost-effective to reach with fixed gigabit broadband, the government is reviewing the responses to its call for evidence which closed in the summer in order to determine the best possible options for improving broadband connectivity.

Evidence on the impacts of superfast broadband is contained in the Evaluation of the Superfast Broadband Programme.

2nd Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of adopting the NMITE skills-based educational model for levelling up in the UK.

The government is clear that all higher education (HE) providers have the potential to deliver on the government’s levelling up agenda, addressing the gaps that still exist in who participates in HE, whether by social background, region, or ethnicity and to deliver provision that much better delivers the skills the economy needs. Higher skills lead to higher regional productivity.

There are many different models through which HE providers deliver the skills their regional economies need. The New Model Institute for Technology and Engineering has much potential but is still a new provider. The government will remain closely interested in the outcomes it delivers for its students.

The department published the ‘Skills for Jobs’ white paper in January 2021, setting out our blueprint to reform post-16 education and training, focusing on giving people the skills they need in a way that suits them.

The white paper sets out that we are putting employers at the heart of the skills system so that education and training meets their needs. By 2030, almost all technical courses will be on employer-led standards, ensuring that the education and training people receive are directly linked to the skills needed for jobs. This builds on the success of our flagship apprenticeships programme where industry designed standards equip apprentices with the skills employers need. It also builds on our work developing new T Levels, which has involved over 250 employers in their design.

Michelle Donelan
Secretary of State for Education
24th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent discussions he has had with the Nutrient Taskforce on phosphate pollution in the river Wye.

The Wye catchment area is internationally important for biodiversity, principally due to the wide range of rare river wildlife. It is vitally important that we achieve the right balance to allow sustainable development to continue and protect our most important natural habitats.

A cross border taskforce focussing on the Wye Catchment was convened by Herefordshire Council in September. The taskforce further supports the ongoing work of the Nutrient Management Board and its associated Technical Advisory Group to find effective solutions.

The board meets quarterly to identify and review actions that achieve the phosphorus conservation target of the River Wye Special Area of Conservation. The primary mechanism for achieving this will be through the delivery of the Nutrient Management Plan, the first draft of which has been published.

In the short term, and alongside the work of the Nutrient Pollution Taskforce, Natural England has been working with Herefordshire Council to enable housing projects that can demonstrate nutrient neutrality to be able to proceed. This has included funding put in place by the Council for both a wetlands scheme, which will have a series of eight interconnected wetlands to support approx. 1500 houses, and the commissioning of the 'Interim Delivery Plan' which includes a Phosphate Calculator, thus enabling small scale developments to be unlocked.

I also attended a productive roundtable meeting on 13 July with Minister Pincher of the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities and local staff from the Environment Agency, Natural England and Herefordshire County Council to discuss this issue.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
2nd Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what progress his Department has made on allocating funding to tackle pollution in the river Wye.

The Wye catchment area is internationally important for biodiversity, principally due to the wide range of rare river wildlife. It is vitally important that we achieve the right balance to allow sustainable development to continue and to protect our most important natural habitats.

In the recently-announced Autumn Budget and Spending Review 2021, Defra has been allocated an additional £250 million to deliver against the goals of the 25 Year Environment Plan for nature's recovery and the new legally-binding target to halt biodiversity loss by 2030. This specifically includes tackling nutrient pollution in rivers and streams.

We are almost doubling funding for the Catchment Sensitive Farming programme. This additional £17 million will allow all farms in England, including those in the Wye catchment, access to free 1-2-1 advice and support farmers to help them reduce water and air pollution through management of farmyard manure and soils, among other things.

We have also recently increased funding to the Environment Agency for 50 new farm inspectors. These will be targeted at high-risk catchments such as the Wye.

As well as Government funding, we are also looking to other investment routes to improve the state of our rivers and the surrounding environment. The water sector is investing £5.4 billion to protect the environment between 2020 and 2025 and we have set a stretching new target to raise at least £500 million in private finance for nature’s recovery every year by 2027 and more than £1 billion a year by 2030.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
20th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent assessment he has made of the (a) level of pollution in the river Wye and (b) impact of that pollution on aquatic life.

The Environment Agency (EA) carries out regular sampling of the River Wye to monitor chemical and biological quality. The main sampling season for the impacts on aquatic life is March to September. Recently collected data is available on the Defra Data Services Platform website here:

https://environment.data.gov.uk/appgallery

The last formal classification of ecological status for the River Wye was carried out in 2019. Overall waterbody classifications for the Wye Management Catchment within England were:

  • 72% were at Moderate Status
  • 22% were at Poor Status
  • 6% were at Bad Status.

Where there is new data available a refresh of these classifications will be completed in 2022. Details of these assessments are published on the Catchment Data Explorer website here:

https://environment.data.gov.uk/catchment-planning/

The EA has increased monitoring of water quality and aquatic life in the Wye Catchment in response to deteriorations identified in the 2019 assessments and recent algal blooms within the catchment. The EA is analysing data collected through the growing season this year (March – September 2021) to update its understanding of the sources, pathways and impacts of pollution in the catchment.

Natural England, Natural Resources Wales, the EA and other partners are working together to find effective solutions to restore the River Wye Special Area of Conservation (SAC) to a favourable condition with respect to phosphate. These measures are set out in the Nutrient Management Plan which is published here:

https://www.herefordshire.gov.uk/directory-record/2097/nutrient_management_plan

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
19th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent discussions he has had with (a) Natural England and (b) the Environment Agency on pollution in the River Wye.

Improving water quality is a government priority. The issues with phosphate pollution in the River Wye are well known. We are working closely with the Environment Agency (EA), Natural England (NE), Natural Resources Wales, Welsh Ministers and local councils to address this issue through multiple channels.

A cross-border meeting about the Wye catchment was convened by Herefordshire Council in September. It is a new group set up to bring together the councillors and officers across all authorities, agencies, Welsh Water, and The Wye and Usk Foundation.

Separately, NE, Natural Resources Wales, the EA and other partners continue to work together, through the Nutrient Management Board and its associated Technical Advisory Group. The board meets quarterly to identify and deliver actions that achieve the phosphorous conservation target of the River Wye Special Area of Conservation. The primary mechanism for achieving this will be through the delivery of the Nutrient Management Plan which will identify measures needed to both restore the site to favourable condition and seek to create capacity for development, without harming the natural environment.

I have also visited the River Wye and attended a roundtable meeting with the hon. Member for North Herefordshire, the Minister of State (Minister for Housing) the Rt Hon Member for Tamworth, local EA and NE staff as well as Herefordshire Council staff held on 13 July to discuss the long-term plan for the River Wye and how we mitigate nutrient pollution there.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
19th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what discussions he has had with the Ministers in the Welsh Government on pollution in the River Wye.

Improving water quality is a government priority. The issues with phosphate pollution in the River Wye are well known. We are working closely with the Environment Agency (EA), Natural England (NE), Natural Resources Wales, Welsh Ministers and local councils to address this issue through multiple channels.

A cross-border meeting about the Wye catchment was convened by Herefordshire Council in September. It is a new group set up to bring together the councillors and officers across all authorities, agencies, Welsh Water, and The Wye and Usk Foundation.

Separately, NE, Natural Resources Wales, the EA and other partners continue to work together, through the Nutrient Management Board and its associated Technical Advisory Group. The board meets quarterly to identify and deliver actions that achieve the phosphorous conservation target of the River Wye Special Area of Conservation. The primary mechanism for achieving this will be through the delivery of the Nutrient Management Plan which will identify measures needed to both restore the site to favourable condition and seek to create capacity for development, without harming the natural environment.

I have also visited the River Wye and attended a roundtable meeting with the hon. Member for North Herefordshire, the Minister of State (Minister for Housing) the Rt Hon Member for Tamworth, local EA and NE staff as well as Herefordshire Council staff held on 13 July to discuss the long-term plan for the River Wye and how we mitigate nutrient pollution there.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
26th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps he is taking to improve local bus services in Herefordshire.

The Government has announced £1.2 billion of transformation funding for buses in the Spending Review. We will allocate funding after assessing the Bus Service Improvement Plans (BSIPs) which all English Local Transport Authorities outside London, including Herefordshire County Council, are developing in collaboration with their local bus operators.

Trudy Harrison
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
22nd Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what the HS2 budget is for bat protection and mitigation.

HS2 Ltd does not have a specific bat protection budget. Most environmental and ecological mitigations - such as hedgerow, wetland, woodland or grassland creation - will be deployed to mitigate the impact of construction upon multiple species. As such, it is not possible to isolate a proportion of the cost of these mitigations to specific bat protection.

In some circumstances, obligations to protect specific bat populations can arise from legislative and regulatory arrangements, or from undertakings and assurances given to Parliament through the hybrid Bill process. Where this is the case, HS2 Ltd will seek physical or ecological solutions that fulfil the requirements of those obligations to the satisfaction of licensing authorities such as Natural England, but which also take account of the need to provide value for money to the taxpayer.

Andrew Stephenson
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
22nd Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how much has been spent to date on bat protection and mitigation.

HS2 Ltd does not have a specific bat protection budget. Most environmental and ecological mitigations - such as hedgerow, wetland, woodland or grassland creation - will be deployed to mitigate the impact of construction upon multiple species. As such, it is not possible to isolate a proportion of the cost of these mitigations to specific bat protection.

In some circumstances, obligations to protect specific bat populations can arise from legislative and regulatory arrangements, or from undertakings and assurances given to Parliament through the hybrid Bill process. Where this is the case, HS2 Ltd will seek physical or ecological solutions that fulfil the requirements of those obligations to the satisfaction of licensing authorities such as Natural England, but which also take account of the need to provide value for money to the taxpayer.

Andrew Stephenson
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
24th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of Odevixibat for treating processive familial intrahepatic cholestasis.

The Department has made no assessment. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) is the independent body responsible for developing evidence-based recommendations for the National Health Service on whether licenced medicines represent a clinically and cost-effective use of resources.

NICE is currently appraising odevixibat for the treatment of progressive familial intrahepatic cholestasis through its highly specialised technologies programme and expects to publish final guidance in January 2022.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
24th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to increase the availability of covid-19 vaccines in Herefordshire.

Herefordshire has one of the highest vaccination rates in the country, with 94.5% of all over 50 year olds and those in at-risk groups having received at least one dose, 92.6% a second dose and 60.2% a booster, as of 26 November 2021.

Herefordshire and Worcestershire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is ensuring it has the staff and volunteer capacity available to deliver additional vaccine appointments to meet demand. This includes a recruitment campaign for trained clinical staff to assist the programme.

Maggie Throup
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
16th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he had made of the effect of prescription charges on nursing students with respiratory conditions who are required to work with covid-19 patients.

We have made no such assessment. Where a student has difficulty in paying for their prescriptions, they may be eligible for the National Health Service Low Income Scheme, which may provide exemption from the prescription charge and help with other health costs, on the basis of a means-tested assessment. They may also be entitled through other exemptions, such as a medical condition, maternity or through receipt of a qualifying benefit.

A prescription pre-payment certificate is also available where a holder of a 12-month certificate can get all the prescriptions they need for just over £2 per week.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
2nd Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps his Department is taking to support residents in Herefordshire in accessing financial services following the recent closures of high street banks.

The decision to close branches is a commercial issue for banks and building societies and the Government does not intervene in these decisions.

Nevertheless, the Government firmly believes that the impact of branch closures should be understood, considered and mitigated where possible so that all customers and businesses continue to have access to banking services.

In September 2020, the Financial Conduct Authority published guidance setting out its expectation of firms when they are deciding to reduce their physical branches or the number of free-to-use ATMs. Firms are expected to carefully consider the impact of a planned closure on their personal and small business customers’ everyday banking and cash access needs and consider possible alternative access arrangements. This will ensure the implementation of closure decisions is undertaken in a way that treats customers fairly. Alternative options for access include the Post Office, which allows 95% of business and 99% of personal banking customers to carry out their everyday banking at 11,500 Post Office branches across the UK.

The Government also remains committed to legislating to protect access to cash and ensuring that the UK's cash infrastructure is sustainable for the long term. On 23 September 2021, the Government closed the Access to Cash Consultation, which included proposals for new laws to make sure people only need to travel a reasonable distance to pay in or take out cash. The Government’s proposals support the continued use of cash in people’s daily lives and help to enable local businesses to continue accepting cash by ensuring they can access deposit facilities. This follows legislative changes to support the widespread offering of cashback without a purchase by shops and other businesses as part of the Financial Services Act 2021.