Channel 4

Karen Bradley Excerpts
Monday 9th January 2023

(1 year, 4 months ago)

Commons Chamber
Read Full debate Read Hansard Text Watch Debate Read Debate Ministerial Extracts

Urgent Questions are proposed each morning by backbench MPs, and up to two may be selected each day by the Speaker. Chosen Urgent Questions are announced 30 minutes before Parliament sits each day.

Each Urgent Question requires a Government Minister to give a response on the debate topic.

This information is provided by Parallel Parliament and does not comprise part of the offical record

Michelle Donelan Portrait Michelle Donelan
- View Speech - Hansard - - - Excerpts

We will be updating the House on that matter shortly.

Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley (Staffordshire Moorlands) (Con)
- View Speech - Hansard - -

Happy new year to you, Mr Speaker. I thank my right hon. Friend for her answer today and for the sensible decision she has taken on Channel 4, which is exactly the right thing to do. Will she expand on how small, creative, independent production companies in north Staffordshire, and those wanting to become such companies, can benefit from this announcement?

Michelle Donelan Portrait Michelle Donelan
- View Speech - Hansard - - - Excerpts

We will be working hand in glove with the independent sector to ensure that we put in place specific safeguards, especially for the most innovative, small and new independent sector producers. We will give an update shortly on that, but we are listening to them at all stages.

Football Governance

Karen Bradley Excerpts
Monday 25th April 2022

(2 years ago)

Commons Chamber
Read Full debate Read Hansard Text Watch Debate Read Debate Ministerial Extracts
Nigel Huddleston Portrait Nigel Huddleston
- View Speech - Hansard - - - Excerpts

I thank the hon. Gentleman for his passion for all things football, but I would not want to underestimate the complexity of what we are trying to do here. The need for a White Paper is not an unusual part of the parliamentary process. In fact, I suspect that if we had not proposed a White Paper, I would now be accused by the Opposition of not bringing one in. It is an important part of the process. We can announce the regulator and the scope of the regulator, but we then come to the complexities of its scale, where is it located, what its roles and responsibilities are and what the sanctioning regime and appeals process should be. All those things still need to be thought out, and we have to ensure that we do it carefully because we have one chance to get this right.

Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley (Staffordshire Moorlands) (Con)
- View Speech - Hansard - -

I, too, pay tribute to my hon. Friend the Member for Chatham and Aylesford (Tracey Crouch) for a fantastic piece of work. I know that football fans across the country will be thrilled today. I am thinking about Leek Town, in the eighth tier of the pyramid, which will be very pleased to see the pyramid being strengthened by this work. I want to ask a question about the regulator. In my experience, regulators do not always deliver what Government Ministers want them to deliver. Given that this is an issue of finance, may I urge the Minister to look at successful financial regulation and perhaps base the regulator model on that?

Nigel Huddleston Portrait Nigel Huddleston
- View Speech - Hansard - - - Excerpts

I thank my right hon. Friend for those comments; I know that she has deep expertise and interest in this area. She is absolutely right, and we will be looking at models as we develop the regulator role. We have seen the Financial Conduct Authority, for example, and its role with the integrity test. There are a lot of things out there that we will genuinely try to learn from, so that we do not have to start from scratch. We will leverage expertise—there is considerable expertise at DCMS and throughout Government on establishing regulators—but we will also learn the lessons of the past.

Budget Resolutions and Economic Situation

Karen Bradley Excerpts
Monday 8th March 2021

(3 years, 2 months ago)

Commons Chamber
Read Full debate Read Hansard Text Read Debate Ministerial Extracts
Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley (Staffordshire Moorlands) (Con)
- Hansard - -

I am delighted, as a woman on the Conservative Benches, to be joining this debate. As I have only three minutes, I am unable to go through the many things in the Budget that I think are wonderful. It is a great Budget and there are many things to praise in it. The numbers that have been quoted by the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, my right hon. Friend the Member for Hertsmere (Oliver Dowden) are frankly eye-watering in terms of Government spending, but in the midst of those big numbers there are some losers and some areas of our economy that need focus. I would like to spend my three minutes—two and a half, as it is now—focusing on them.

First, the self-employed who are employed through a limited company have not had any support at all. I cannot be the only Member in this House who has constant emails from such constituents asking for support. I am not saying that this is easy, but perhaps the Treasury could see whether there is a way to help the self-employed. Many of those who are self-employed through limited companies are in the creative industries, and it would be great if we could find some way of helping them.

The wedding sector has also been particularly hard hit. Wedding venues are too large to qualify for business rates relief. They have no turnover, so the VAT reductions do not help them, and they do not serve food, so eat out to help out could not help them. I know that support has been given to the wedding industry, but these venues want to get back open and to hold weddings. They can do that in a covid-safe way, and they were doing so before this lockdown. I ask the Government to bring forward support for that sector.

I also want to touch on pubs, and I declare my interest in that my family run pubs and it is the industry in which I grew up. While great support has been given, wet pubs in particular have suffered. Support such as eat out to help out has been available, as well as the VAT reduction to 5%, which is very welcome and I am pleased that it has been extended—as is Alton Towers, one of the biggest employers in my constituency. However, if a pub does not sell food, it does not qualify for the 5% reduction. Would the Government consider finding some way to help those wet pubs? They will be reopening just as the football season comes to an end and will therefore not have the benefit of people coming in to watch the football, and they do not serve food and therefore cannot benefit from many of the Government’s incentive schemes. Just a suggestion: maybe there could be a way to allow those businesses to continue furloughing staff but let the staff come back in to work to help them to reopen. There are great costs involved in reopening that they need to think about.

My final point is about getting people back into town centres and spending money in the hospitality businesses. We need a whole-of-Government effort to ensure that not just the great events that my right hon. Friend mentioned but local events are held. I spoke to the leader of my district council today, and we are looking to see what we can do because we want those businesses to be able to stand on their own two feet, as the Secretary of State said.

Online Harms Consultation

Karen Bradley Excerpts
Tuesday 15th December 2020

(3 years, 5 months ago)

Commons Chamber
Read Full debate Read Hansard Text Read Debate Ministerial Extracts
Oliver Dowden Portrait Oliver Dowden
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

The right hon. Lady raises a very important point. As a Member of Parliament who proudly represents a very large Jewish community, I know the challenges of antisemitism, and that has been at the front of my mind in framing this legislation. It is a challenging area, this point about anonymity. Of course, if there is criminal conduct that the police and law enforcement agencies are investigating, they have ways of dealing with that anonymity in order to bring criminal cases. The reluctance I have had, and the Government have had, to introduce provision across the board is about how we lift the veil of anonymity while at the same time protecting some very vulnerable people who rely on it. But of course we will continue to keep it under review.

Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley (Staffordshire Moorlands) (Con)
- Hansard - -

I fear that we on the Government Benches feel a little like the ghost of Secretaries of State past for my right hon. Friend. I welcome this statement and the moves that the Government have made. Taking him back to the issue of age assurance and age verification, I am pleased to hear that he is looking at different types of technology to protect children, but will he please not let the perfect be the enemy of the good and do something around age verification as soon as possible?

Oliver Dowden Portrait Oliver Dowden
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

My right hon. Friend is absolutely correct. I should pay tribute to all her work in this area. Of course we will not allow the best to be the enemy of the good. We will not be mandating the use of specific technological approaches. We know that those technological approaches are available, and Ofcom will be holding tech companies to account to make sure that they take advantage of them in order to provide protection for children.

Online Harms

Karen Bradley Excerpts
Thursday 19th November 2020

(3 years, 6 months ago)

Commons Chamber
Read Full debate Read Hansard Text Read Debate Ministerial Extracts
Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley (Staffordshire Moorlands) (Con)
- Hansard - -

I congratulate my right hon. and learned Friend the Member for Kenilworth and Southam (Jeremy Wright) on securing this debate and I thank the Backbench Business Committee for granting time for it.

There is no doubt that the internet can be a force for good. Over the past few months, we have all enjoyed the fact that we can keep in touch with family and friends. We can work from home. Even some people can participate in certain parts of our proceedings, although clearly not this debate. But the internet can be used for harm. In the limited time I have I want to make just two points. One is about the impact on children and the other is about advertising online.

When I was the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, I initially took the idea to the then Prime Minister, my right hon. Friend the Member for Maidenhead (Mrs May), that we should have an internet safety strategy. That is what has become the online harms strategy. The internet safety strategy was born out of my work in the Home Office when I was the Minister for Preventing Abuse, Exploitation and Crime. It was so clear to me through the work that I did in particular on protecting children that the internet was being used to harm children. We have some great successes. The WePROTECT initiative, for example, which has had a real impact on removing pornographic images of children and child abuse online, is a great success, but we must never rest on our laurels. I ask my hon. Friend the Minister, who knows full well about all this, because he was with me when lots of this work was happening in the Department, to deal with the issue of age verification on pornography. I know that it does not resolve every issue. It is not going to solve every problem, but there was a message given to me by children time and again. If there was one thing they wanted to see stopped, it was access to pornography because that was what was fuelling the harm that they faced.

Turning to advertising, I will share with the House that this weekend I will be cooking a beef brisket that I will be purchasing from Meakins butchers in Leek, and I will be putting on it a beef rub. Hon. Members may ask why I am telling them that. I am telling them that because I have been mithered for weeks by my 15 year-old son, who has seen such a beef rub on Instagram. He is not getting his advertising from broadcast media. He is getting his advertising from the internet and he is desperate to try a beef rub on beef brisket, and I will therefore make sure he does so over the weekend.

We have to have a level playing field on advertising. Our broadcast media is about to face real restrictions on the way that certain products can be advertised. This will impact on our public service broadcasters in particular, but we do not see the same level of regulation applied to the internet, and I know for one that the place my children are seeing advertising is on the internet. It is, sadly, not on broadcast media in the way I picked up my advertising. I ask my hon. Friend the Minister to make sure he does something on that matter as well.

Football Spectator Attendance: Covid-19

Karen Bradley Excerpts
Monday 9th November 2020

(3 years, 6 months ago)

Westminster Hall
Read Full debate Read Hansard Text Read Debate Ministerial Extracts

Westminster Hall is an alternative Chamber for MPs to hold debates, named after the adjoining Westminster Hall.

Each debate is chaired by an MP from the Panel of Chairs, rather than the Speaker or Deputy Speaker. A Government Minister will give the final speech, and no votes may be called on the debate topic.

This information is provided by Parallel Parliament and does not comprise part of the offical record

Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley (Staffordshire Moorlands) (Con)
- Hansard - -

Thank you, Mr Stringer. Of course I do not mind at all. It is a pleasure to serve under your chairmanship.

I pay tribute also to my hon. Friend, and constituency neighbour, the Member for Stoke-on-Trent North (Jonathan Gullis). I can absolutely attest to what he has said about the value in the community of Port Vale and Stoke City, who support local activities and community events in my constituency of Staffordshire Moorlands, too. They are incredibly important and, indeed, vital parts of our community.

I thank the Government for allowing elite sport to continue during this lockdown. To be clear, nothing that I am about to say is regarding what is happening today, in this lockdown; it is to the time after the lockdown that I think we need to look. However, I will just make the point that there was a match yesterday at the Etihad Stadium and my son and I are utterly convinced that, if we had been there, we would have got the Blues over the line and had a victory—I say sorry to the hon. Member for Wirral South (Alison McGovern), on the Opposition Benches, for that. But we could not be there, and we accept that. We were pleased that we were able to watch on television even if we were not able to help our team to get that victory.

My hon. Friend the Minister will know that I have referred before to my community club, Leek Town, which is a step four club, so has been able to have spectators. It is clearly unable to play any matches at the moment because of lockdown, and it fully accepts and appreciates that, but could I repeat this question to the Minister? When we do get out of lockdown, can we not have a one-size-fits-all answer to this? There may well be clubs that can fit in more fans. They need to have other revenue streams. They are not asking for a Government bail-out. They want the chance to run and to make the money that they would normally make. This one is a volunteer-run club. It wants to have hospitality again—no prawn cocktails; it is entirely Staffordshire oatcakes. It would like to be able to have that hospitality back and have those income streams.

May I make a point about another elite sport? I am the treasurer of the all-party parliamentary group on Formula 1, and it was brilliant to have two F1s this year at Silverstone, but when we spoke to Silverstone recently, it said that the lack of fans was soul-destroying. It is such a big spectator event—all outdoors—for household groups travelling together. When Lewis Hamilton took the record for the most F1 wins in Portimão, Portugal, there were spectators flying the Union flag which, I am sure, was important for him and the fans.

Finally, on grassroots sports, I co-signed the letter from my hon. Friend the Member for Folkestone and Hythe (Damian Collins), who is no longer here. We need grassroots sports, not just because they are important in themselves, but because they are a pipeline for elite sports. We heard recently from the rugby authorities that there is a real worry that we will not have that pipeline of young players coming through, which will have an impact on our national teams and on the mental health and wellbeing of many.

Digital, Culture, Media and Sport: Support Measures

Karen Bradley Excerpts
Thursday 8th October 2020

(3 years, 7 months ago)

Commons Chamber
Read Full debate Read Hansard Text Read Debate Ministerial Extracts
Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley (Staffordshire Moorlands) (Con)
- Hansard - -

It is an honour to follow the hon. Member for Enfield, Southgate (Bambos Charalambous), who I serve with on the Procedure Committee. I, too, have had emails from freelance musicians who are struggling enormously. He set out the issues so well and it is an honour to follow him. I also pay tribute to my hon. Friend the Member for Solihull (Julian Knight) and the hon. Member for Cardiff West (Kevin Brennan) for securing this important debate.

I was once the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, so I know these sectors pretty darn well. The Minister worked there closely with me, so he will know some of the things that I am about to say. I know that there is nobody on the Government side of the House who does anything but recognise the contribution that the sectors DCMS represents make to this country, including—absolutely—economically. When I became Secretary of State in July 2016, the sectors that DCMS represented contributed 13% of the UK economy. By the time I moved to Northern Ireland in January 2018, it was over 16%, demonstrating just how those sectors grow much faster than the economy at large and really contribute so much.

However, they also give us so much more. They are the soul of our nation, as my hon. Friend the Member for Cities of London and Westminster (Nickie Aiken) said. They give us joy. They have a role to play in so many parts of our lives, including in education. These are areas that might grasp that child who really does not know what they want to do with the rest of their life, taking them away from crime or gang culture and giving them a focus and a purpose.

If global Britain is anything, it is our creative industries. Goodness me, if we want to punch above our weight, have a look at what our creative industries, sporting institutions, arts and museums do. They are so well known around the world and they open doors for us in a way that nothing else can. When I was a Minister in the Home Office visiting Pakistan, if I wanted to have a conversation with any senior Minister, it was much easier to open the conversation by talking about cricket than it was security, representation and how we might possibly help each other with our security exports.

There is also the economic impact of inward investment. We want companies to invest in Britain. We want companies here in the United Kingdom to put their money in and create jobs. They are not going to put employees in places where there is nothing for them to do when they get home in the evening. They want a strong cultural sector. They want sporting events. They want to be able to take part in charities. They want to be part of more of society than just going to work every day. That is why it is so important that so far, the Government support for DCMS sectors has been there, but we need to make sure that the sectors continue to be supported.

I want to raise a few local issues. I have the privilege of being the Member of Parliament for Alton Towers—I suspect many Members have visited Oblivion and Nemesis and have enjoyed their trips to Alton Towers. Alton Towers has been open this year. It has been fantastic. I have been a couple of times with my family and we have been able to really enjoy the rollercoasters and the feeling of being in this great place of fun. It is so grateful for the VAT cut and the fact that it has been extended, but it really wants to see that continue. It wants to see support for businesses like Alton Towers so that it can continue. Having lost out on the school trip season and so many other parts of the season, it wants to make sure that it can extend its season and get support where it needs it.

On sporting events, we must get fans back. That is absolutely something I miss so much. Not being able to go to the Etihad and watch my beloved Manchester City score goals is a great trauma for me, so please can we get them back? We must also get support for freelancers and sole traders—that is absolutely vital.

Nigel Evans Portrait Mr Deputy Speaker (Mr Nigel Evans)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

Andy Slaughter will be the last speaker on four minutes. I want to try to get everybody in if we can, so we will then go down to three minutes.

Professional and Amateur Sport: Government Support

Karen Bradley Excerpts
Wednesday 30th September 2020

(3 years, 7 months ago)

Commons Chamber
Read Full debate Read Hansard Text Read Debate Ministerial Extracts
Nigel Huddleston Portrait Nigel Huddleston
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

I certainly agree with the principle the hon. Member has articulated that if sport is allowed and we are confident it can be done safely, please make sure it goes ahead. However, it is up to individual governing bodies to give specific guidance and recommendations. We do of course work with them, at the DCMS and elsewhere, on that guidance. I would applaud any sports entity or body that, if it is confident it can do so safely, goes ahead. We need those activity levels up.

Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley (Staffordshire Moorlands) (Con)
- Hansard - -

I pay tribute to my hon. Friend the Member for Chatham and Aylesford (Tracey Crouch) for securing this urgent question. She is truly a doughty supporter of sport across all sports, professional and amateur.

The Minister perhaps is not as aware of Leek Town as he should be, but it is a fantastic local community club, run by volunteers and the community, and it really does deliver for the community. We have youth teams, juniors, lots of girls and a great women’s first team, as well as the men’s first team; they did not perform as well as would have liked yesterday, but they are still doing very well. Thanks to support from Staffordshire Moorlands District Council and the Football Foundation, Leek Town has managed to keep its head above water and, as a step 4 club, it is able to welcome up to 400 spectators, but it does need to start to do other things, such as expanding the hospitality offer, and it would like to be able slowly to introduce more fans into the stadium, which has plenty of space. Will my hon. Friend make sure, when looking at increasing the number of fans and looser hospitality, that we do not have a one-size-fits-all formula, but instead use the common sense that is right for each club?

Nigel Huddleston Portrait Nigel Huddleston
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

I thank my right hon. Friend for her comments. Indeed, I know from her previous work in the Department that she is a huge champion of this sector, and obviously locally as well. We will of course work with the Sports Grounds Safety Authority and, indeed, the governing bodies of sport—in this case, the FA and other football authorities—to make sure that when we can increase the numbers, we do exactly that, because of the pivotal role of ticket sales in revenues for clubs. She makes the point that other revenue sources are available, and I encourage them to pursue them to the greatest extent possible.

Kidsgrove Sports Centre

Karen Bradley Excerpts
Tuesday 9th June 2020

(3 years, 11 months ago)

Commons Chamber
Read Full debate Read Hansard Text Read Debate Ministerial Extracts
Jonathan Gullis Portrait Jonathan Gullis (Stoke-on-Trent North) (Con)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

I start by welcoming the Minister to his place. He was actually a former neighbouring MP when I was living in Stratford-upon-Avon in my childhood bedroom at the age of 29 or 30 years old, so it is a great honour to have the chance to talk to him today. I am also grateful to hon. Members across the House for joining the debate. Kidsgrove sports centre is something that my hon. Friend the Minister has heard many things about since getting to his place. I am looking forward to providing a fuller education about why this important community asset must be refurbished and saved.

Kidsgrove sports centre is an essential community asset. The centre was a place for people of all walks of life to congregate for one common purpose—to focus on their physical and mental wellbeing. Initially, the centre was a place for one’s own wellbeing; it then bloomed as connections were formed and faces became familiar. It became a hub for people in the community to interact with one another and, consequently, care for one another.

Kidsgrove sports centre was opened in 1976. From the beginning, the push to bring sport facilities to Kidsgrove was community-led. The centre was built to fill the huge demand for local sporting facilities. That demand has increased, not decreased, yet nearly 45 years later, a gap has once again emerged following the closure of the centre. Kidsgrove sports centre was last refurbished in 1991, 25 years after the initial build. That refurbishment carried the centre through to 2011, when a storm caused the roof to cave in and the wet site was closed. A full refurbishment will likely extend the life span of the centre by another 25 years at a third of the cost of a new build. Discussions pertaining to a potential new-build sports facility were launched in earnest in 2012 although, regrettably, nothing came to fruition. During the course of these discussions, the friction that arose between local government figures and the wider community came to a head in 2017, when it was announced that Kidsgrove sports centre was to be closed, much to the shock and surprise of the public.

Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley (Staffordshire Moorlands) (Con)
- Hansard - -

I am so grateful to my hon. Friend and next-door neighbour. He is speaking up for a community asset that my constituents in Staffordshire Moorlands value and use as well, but does he agree that the time has come to put aside differences and just get on with getting this right and finding a way to reopen Kidsgrove sports centre?

Jonathan Gullis Portrait Jonathan Gullis
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

I am grateful to my neighbour and right hon. Friend. The one thing that the people of North Staffordshire have been aware of is the absolute commitment to cross-border working, as we have seen with the Stoke to Leek line, which my right hon. Friend has relentlessly campaigned for—I joined that campaign— but also obviously with the sports centre, which will serve her constituents as well as mine.

The tensions between local government institutions and figures continued until very recently when Councillor Simon Tagg became leader of Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council and unleashed a fresh appetite for the re-establishment of sporting facilities in North Staffordshire. I would like to take this moment, as seems apt, to offer my unreserved thanks to Councillor Tagg for recentring the focus on the wellbeing of the community and for his tireless efforts to drive this forward. On a similar note, Councillor Gill Burnett of Staffordshire County Council and Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council, who is also a trustee of the Kidsgrove Sports Centre Community Group, has been closely involved in a campaign to reopen the centre.

The dedication of those public servants and many others, alongside the commitment of the community to see swimming and sports brought back to Kidsgrove, is a source of inspiration. I vowed during the election campaign to do everything in my power to bring this issue to Government and lobby for the funding the people of Stoke-on-Trent, North Kidsgrove and Talke need and deserve.

Oral Answers to Questions

Karen Bradley Excerpts
Thursday 21st December 2017

(6 years, 5 months ago)

Commons Chamber
Read Full debate Read Hansard Text Read Debate Ministerial Extracts
David Hanson Portrait David Hanson (Delyn) (Lab)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

1. When she plans to announce her decision on a new location for Channel 4.

Karen Bradley Portrait The Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (Karen Bradley)
- Hansard - -

We have been clear all along that this is a publicly owned broadcaster. Channel 4 must provide for and reflect the country as a whole. We are still in discussions with Channel 4 about how it should do this, including through relocating staff out of London, and we will set out next steps in due course.

David Hanson Portrait David Hanson
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

Merry Christmas, Mr Speaker. Will the Secretary of State confirm that moving Channel 4 out of London would bring an approximate £600 million benefit to broadcasting, and that it is unacceptable that only four of the 120 commissioners of programmes for Channel 4 currently live outside London? There is an economic benefit, whether it is Salford, which I prefer, Birmingham, Sheffield or Leeds, and it should be done now.

Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley
- Hansard - -

I thought it was going to be a bid for Wrexham, so I am interested to hear the right hon. Gentleman’s views on other locations. There are many estimates of the benefit, but Channel 4 relocating out of London would have a clear benefit to the country. It is a publicly owned broadcaster and as such we expect it to deliver public benefits above and beyond commercial benefits, and that includes relocating out of London.

John Whittingdale Portrait Mr John Whittingdale (Maldon) (Con)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

While I welcome the reports that Channel 4 will be employing more people and investing more money outside London, does my right hon. Friend agree that to send the message that Channel 4 is an alternative broadcaster serving different audiences, its headquarters should not be in SW1?

Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley
- Hansard - -

My right hon. Friend speaks with great experience and knowledge on this matter, and the House does well to listen to his wise words.

Christine Jardine Portrait Christine Jardine (Edinburgh West) (LD)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

Does the Secretary of State agree that, as Channel 4 is not a programme maker but only a programme commissioner, there is limited benefit in moving staff, and surely it should be the programme making that reflects the diversity of the country?

Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley
- Hansard - -

This is one of the arguments that has been made about how Channel 4’s business model operates. We have seen what happened with the BBC’s move to Salford—although I accept that the BBC has a different business model. That creativity and clustering of talent has had benefit. One has only to look at the analysis of the amount of programming that is currently commissioned outside London to see that basing Channel 4 outside London could have significant benefits for those independent production companies that are not in SW1.

Wes Streeting Portrait Wes Streeting (Ilford North) (Lab)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

2. What steps her Department is taking to ensure that the level of National Lottery funding for charities is maintained.

--- Later in debate ---
Karen Bradley Portrait The Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (Karen Bradley)
- Hansard - -

We are committed to cracking down on unacceptable behaviour in the ticketing market and improving fans’ chances of buying tickets at a reasonable price. We are strengthening the existing ticketing provisions in the Consumer Rights Act 2015, and we intend to introduce a new criminal offence of using automated software to buy more tickets than allowed. We also welcome the work of the Competition and Markets Authority in this area, as well as the industry’s own initiatives.

Paul Masterton Portrait Paul Masterton
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

Too many of my constituents will not be getting the tickets they had hoped for this Christmas as a result of mass harvesting by electronic bots. I welcome the Secretary of State’s commitment, but will she confirm when this new offence will be introduced and when my constituents will see changes?

Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley
- Hansard - -

I sympathise greatly with my hon. Friend’s constituents and their concerns. At Christmas in particular, when parents, friends and family are looking to buy tickets for events, it can be very frustrating. That is why we introduced the offence in the Digital Economy Act 2017 and are committed to introducing these changes as quickly as possible, hoping to bring in secondary legislation in the spring.

John Bercow Portrait Mr Speaker
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

From Christmas goose to online ticket sales in fewer than 24 hours. I call Mr Clive Efford.

Clive Efford Portrait Clive Efford (Eltham) (Lab)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

Thank you, Mr Speaker. It is no good the Secretary of State coming here and wringing her hands; the Government had plenty of opportunity to put the restrictions in place to prevent the resale of these tickets online. The Government were warned about this and failed to act—small wonder since they had one of these online ticket touts on the board of directors giving them advice. It is time they stood up for consumers.

Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley
- Hansard - -

I am slightly confused, Mr Speaker. We changed the law. We did something. We have acted on this and we will introduce the secondary legislation in the spring.

Bob Blackman Portrait Bob Blackman (Harrow East) (Con)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

9. What estimate she has made of the amount donated to support the victims of the Grenfell Tower fire; and if she will make a statement.

--- Later in debate ---
Pauline Latham Portrait Mrs Pauline Latham (Mid Derbyshire) (Con)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

T1. If she will make a statement on her departmental responsibilities.

Karen Bradley Portrait The Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (Karen Bradley)
- Hansard - -

I am delighted to be able to confirm to the House again that the Commonwealth Games Federation has this morning announced that the 2022 Commonwealth games have been awarded to Birmingham. Our commitments now come into effect, and I am sure that the games will demonstrate the very best of global Britain and Birmingham to the world. May I add my congratulations to all involved, particularly Mayor Andy Street and the Sports Minister, my hon. Friend the Member for Chatham and Aylesford (Tracey Crouch), who has done an incredible amount of work with her team to ensure that we secure this important event for Birmingham? Even better, thanks to our announcement yesterday that people have a legal right to demand high-speed internet in their home by 2020, more people across the country will be able to enjoy the games.

On the subject of sporting successes, I would like to congratulate Sir Mo Farah on being named BBC sports personality of the year and the England women’s cricket team—we will not mention any other cricket team—on being named team of the year. I am sure the House will agree that both accolades are very well deserved.

I have spent many an oral questions session telling Members that I cannot comment on the UK city of culture bids, given that one was from my local city, Stoke-on-Trent, so it is a great pleasure to finally be allowed to talk about the city of culture, although I am sad that it is not Stoke-on-Trent. I would like to congratulate Coventry on its success in being named UK city of culture for 2021, and my commiserations go to the unsuccessful cities.

Finally, I would like to wish you, Mr Speaker, and all Members of the House—[Interruption]—even the hon. Member for West Bromwich East (Tom Watson), a very merry Christmas. I take this opportunity to thank all the charities working so hard over Christmas and throughout the year for all that they do.

John Bercow Portrait Mr Speaker
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

Yes, and I think that the BBC overseas sports personality of the year is the inimitable and unsurpassable Roger Federer, my all-time sporting hero.

Pauline Latham Portrait Mrs Latham
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

May I take this opportunity to wish you, Mr Speaker, and the whole House, including all the members of staff here, a very merry Christmas and a happy new year?

I encourage people to visit places in my constituency such as the Derwent Valley world heritage site, which encompasses the Strutt’s mills in Belper, which won the first Great British high street award. We are working towards having a cycle way up the entire Derwent valley, to encourage international visitors to the area. Does my right hon. Friend agree that visitors would have an amazing visit if they came to the Derwent valley and other parts of Derbyshire rather than just staying in London?

Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley
- Hansard - -

I have to agree with my hon. Friend. I know that part of the world very well, as I am sure you can imagine, Mr Speaker, and I agree, particularly about the use of cycling to get people to see these incredible parts of our country, the scenery, the UNESCO world heritage sites, and others. However, I would point out that you do not have to go to Derbyshire to enjoy the Peak district; you can also enjoy it in Staffordshire.

Rosena Allin-Khan Portrait Dr Rosena Allin-Khan (Tooting) (Lab)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

Merry Christmas to you, Mr Speaker, and to one and all, in particular my opposite number, the Under-Secretary of State, the hon. Member for Chatham and Aylesford (Tracey Crouch), who it is a pleasure to serve opposite.

The Gambling Commission’s annual report confirmed that children as young as 11 are being introduced to forms of online gambling. The Gambling Act 2005 was introduced before many young gamers could trade in loot boxes. Right now, there is nothing to stop a child gambling away money for virtual prizes in video games. Can the Minister please tell me when the Government will look to close this loophole and put an end to loot box gambling?

--- Later in debate ---
John Whittingdale Portrait Mr John Whittingdale (Maldon) (Con)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

T7. Is my right hon. Friend aware that estimates show that something like over 1 million people will be watching their festive TV and films using illegal streaming devices? Does she agree that this does huge damage to our creative industries, and will she look at what more can be done to tackle it?

Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley
- Hansard - -

My right hon. Friend again speaks with great knowledge and experience. He has very wise words for us—one very wise man in the Chamber at Christmas time is a start—and his points are well made. We want to ensure that content is protected and that those who provide and produce it are able to make the money that they should rightly make from it. We are working with the creative industries as part of the sector deal in the industrial strategy on how to protect content in the most effective way.

Paul Sweeney Portrait Mr Paul Sweeney (Glasgow North East) (Lab/Co-op)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

T4. I am sure the Minister agrees that a vital aspect of creating a thriving and exciting community for all parts of the UK is safeguarding our national built heritage. In my city of Glasgow, the Glasgow Building Preservation Trust, of which I am a member, the renovation of the Fairfield Heritage Centre, in which I am involved, and the Springburn winter gardens project in my constituency could be threatened as we come out of the European Union, as European regional development funding is unavailable to safeguard these heritage projects. Can the Minister guarantee that any funding available to these projects will be safeguarded when European Union funding is no longer available?

--- Later in debate ---
Kirstene Hair Portrait Kirstene Hair (Angus) (Con)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

As the Secretary of State is aware, Dundee city has put together a transformative bid to be the European city of culture. I desperately want Dundee—its bid will have clear benefits for all of Tayside—and the other cities to have a chance to test their bids. May I urge my right hon. Friend to find an alternative way of taking forward this contest so that all the time, money and, most importantly, vision for Dundee is not put to waste?

Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley
- Hansard - -

My hon. Friend has been an absolute stalwart in campaigning for Dundee, both before the very disappointing announcement by the European Commission and since, and in finding a way of recognising the work that has been done. Dundee should be congratulated: it made a bid for city of culture in 2017, when Hull was given the award, and since then, the same team has worked together and really built up the Dundee waterfront, with the new V&A coming next year. We are working with Dundee and the other cities to find a way through this, but I once again commend my hon. Friend for her incredible work in promoting the bid.

Ian C. Lucas Portrait Ian C. Lucas (Wrexham) (Lab)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

T5. The Prime Minister herself referred to allegations of police misconduct in her correspondence with the former First Secretary of State last night. Is it not high time that the Secretary of State commenced this unfinished business, and honoured the promise of a previous Conservative Prime Minister to get Leveson 2 under way?

Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley
- Hansard - -

We have consulted on Leveson, and we will release the responses and our response to the consultation in due course. We are currently having conversations with all those involved to make sure we follow the proper process that is required before we can release the figures.

Mims Davies Portrait Mims Davies (Eastleigh) (Con)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

I declare an interest as the chair of the all-party group on commercial radio. Will the Minister update the House on the long-awaited but positive deregulation plans announced this week? Commercial radio has long been struggling with outdated, old-fashioned restrictions, meaning that the industry has been unfairly treated.

--- Later in debate ---
Danielle Rowley Portrait Danielle Rowley (Midlothian) (Lab)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

Members on both sides of the House may enjoy many festive films over the Christmas period. The Secretary of State will be aware that there are plans for a new film studio in my constituency, but will she do everything possible to ensure that that studio and creative industries across the UK flourish post-Brexit?

Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley
- Hansard - -

I absolutely agree with the hon. Lady. The creative industries are a real UK success story. They are growing much faster than the rest of the economy, and they make up a significant proportion of our economic value and our power in the world. We have a brilliant film industry in the UK, and I urge all hon. Members, if they have not yet done so, to go and see “Paddington 2” and “Star Wars” this Christmas, as they are both British-made films. I also welcome the initiative in her constituency. I assure her that we are working closely with the creative industries to make sure they are on the same secure footing post-Brexit as they are today.

Tom Tugendhat Portrait Tom Tugendhat (Tonbridge and Malling) (Con)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

Since we are focusing on “Paddington 2” I should announce an interest because we are going this weekend—please don’t tell my son! “Paddington 1”, which we intend to watch on catch-up the day before, will be problematic because while some people are enjoying fibre lines and some have copper, we in some parts of Kent appear to have a hemp line that connects us to the rest of the internet.

--- Later in debate ---
Thangam Debbonaire Portrait Thangam Debbonaire (Bristol West) (Lab)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

I refer the House to my entry in the Register of Members’ Financial Interests. Given that we are not allowed to talk about what is in the Brexit sectoral analyses over the road at 100 Parliament Street, will the Secretary of State say what is not in them in relation to the creative industries?

Karen Bradley Portrait Karen Bradley
- Hansard - -

I do not think there is anything that is not in there. The creative industries work with us, and these are sectoral analyses that set out the analysis we have made as Government, working with the industry. I am sorry to disappoint the hon. Lady at Christmastime if she feels that she is missing something, and I hope that when Christmas comes it will provide everything she is looking for.

The Attorney General was asked—