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Eilidh Whiteford, MP for Banff & Buchan

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Turriff's Moonlight Tandoori Wins Place In Tiffin Cup Grand Final

Sunday, 26 June 2011

Turriff’s Moonlight Tandoori restaurant has been chosen to represent Banff & Buchan as one of the twelve finalists in the prestigious Tiffin Cup competition. The Grand Final of the Lyca Tiffin Cup 2011 is to be held in the House of Commons on Wednesday 6th July 2011. The competition is held each year to find the best South Asian restaurant in the UK.

Mr. Choudhury, Proprietor, Moon Light Tandoori
with Eilidh Whiteford MP
The Tiffin Cup winner is chosen from a list of restaurants that have been nominated by their local MPs. This year 62 restaurants were nominated by local MPs, and the Moonlight Tandoori was nominated by Dr Eilidh Whiteford MP.

Keith Vaz MP, Chair of the Tiffin Club said:

“We are delighted that Moonlight Tandoori has beaten extremely stiff competition in order to become one of the finalists in the Lyca Tiffin Cup on 6th July 2011. This is a great tribute not just to the nomination of Moonlight Tandoori, but also to the constituency of Banff & Buchan as a whole. We wish them the very best of luck for the final.”

Dr Eilidh Whiteford MP said:

“I am delighted that Moonlight Tandoori has made it into the final of the Lyca Tiffin Cup 2011. This is such a prestigious award, and I will certainly be there on 6th July to cheer Moonlight Tandoori and I am sure that everybody in Banff & Buchan will be rooting for our restaurant to be crowned the 2011 champion.”

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SNP Raise Energy Inflation Concerns In Commons

Thursday, 23 June 2011

SNP MPs tackled the UK Government on soaring energy prices in the House of Commons and called for action to help hard pressed households with escalating energy costs

Figures obtained from the Office of National Statistics show that in four out of the last five years the rise in domestic gas prices has far outstripped the rate of inflation.

Speaking from Westminster, Banff & Buchan MP Eilidh Whiteford said:

“The Office of National Statistics’ figures confirm the rise in domestic gas prices has far outstripped the rate of inflation, and that is before the latest round of prices hikes.

“Energy prices increases are getting out of hand for households that are already struggling to make ends meet. People just cannot keep absorbing continuous and colossal energy price increases and the UK Government must step in.

“Soaring prices are particularly hard to swallow when Scotland is such an energy rich country, yet faces steep rises in prices.

“We must have a top level review of the domestic and international energy market.

“UK Ministers need to take action to help long suffering domestic customers, as well as businesses which are being crushed under the weight of these additional costs."

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Eildih Hosts Fishermen's Mission Reception In Commons

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Banff & Buchan MP Eilidh Whiteford hosted a reception for the Royal National Mission to Deep Sea Fishermen in the House of Commons on Thursday.

The event, which was to promote the work of the Mission, was attended by Mission officials from around the UK, MPs with fishing interests and the crew of the Lunar Bow, which had sailed to London to publicise the work of the Mission during Seafarers' Awareness Week.

Speaking from Westminster after the event, Eilidh said:

(1st left) Stephen Campbell; (3rd left) Eilidh Whiteford;
(2nd right) Michael Willox; (1st right) Mark Buchan
“I was delighted to be able to host a Reception for the Fishermen’s Mission in the Houses of Parliament, and I was especially pleased to welcome Skipper Alex Buchan and the crew of the Lunar Bow. They sailed down from Peterhead to highlight the Mission’s valuable work in our maritime communities, and really helped raise the Mission's profile during national Seafarers Awareness Week.

“Quite a few MPs were able to board the Lunar Bow while it was tied up beside HMS Belfast. I’m sure we were all impressed with this modern, state of the art pelagic vessel. However, we shouldn’t forget that fishing remains an inherently high risk occupation that takes place in what is often a hostile environment.

“The Mission continues to play a vital role in supporting the welfare of fishermen, during and after their time at sea, and holds a very special place in the hearts of our coastal towns and villages.”

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Whiteford Questions Defence Secretary

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

FOX ADMITS SCOTLAND DISPROPORTIONATELY HIT BY DEFENCE CUTS

The decline in Scotland’s defence footprint must be addressed by the UK Government the SNP said today (Tuesday), after the Defence Secretary admitted, during an evidence session at the Scottish Affairs Select Committee, that Scotland had endured disproportionate cuts over the last decade.

Speaking during the session Defence Secretary Liam Fox admitted:

“I am aware of the fact that, between 2000 and 2010, the total reduction [in service jobs] was 11.6% but the reduction in Scotland was 27.9%, so over the decade there were bigger reductions made in personnel as a proportion than in other parts of the UK.”


Note that UK Parliament recordings use Microsoft technology which may not work on non-Windows devices

Seizing on the admission Scottish Affairs Committee member and Banff & Buchan MP Dr Eilidh Whiteford said:

“Given the Defence Secretary’s admission that Scotland has already been hit by disproportionate defence cuts the UK Government should commit now, if it has any commitment to maintain a balanced defence footprint across the nations and regions of the UK, to the future of our remaining bases.

“Scotland has already endured mammoth defence cuts over the last decade, and every indication is that this will be compounded by decisions being taken within the Strategic Defence Review.

“Having just 2.1% of senior officers based in Scotland reflects the small number of military bases and uniformed personnel posted here as well as an absence of any permanent senior strategic command or training facilities.

“At present there are only 12,190 UK service-personnel in Scotland. Since the last defence review in 1997 there have been more than 10,500 defence job losses in Scotland and there has been a defence under-spend of at least £5.6 billion. This under-spend constitutes a 36% budget shortfall.

“Given these unacceptable circumstances it is unbelievable that the UK Government is still considering the closure of two thirds of the Air Force bases in Scotland and a 25% reduction in established Service personnel.

“The Ministry of Defence must decide whether it is committed to defence in Scotland.”


Note:

Details of the Defence Secretary’s session with the Scottish Affairs Select Committee can be found here:

http://www.parliamentlive.tv/Main/Player.aspx?meetingId=8518

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MP Receives Assurance On St Fergus Post Office Service

Banff & Buchan MP Eilidh Whiteford has received an assurance from Post Office senior management that the current level of service will be restored to St Fergus Post Office by the end of June.

The current provider of the outreach service, which is based at the village shop, has pulled out. A reduced service of one morning per week will be provided for the next three weeks by Post Office staff from Oldmeldrum before the service is restored to the current level of 9.00am to 12.00pm on Mondays and Wednesdays. The service will remain hosted in its current location at the village shop.

Commenting, Eilidh Whiteford MP said:

“It is unfortunate that the current provider of the outreach service has pulled out due to personal reasons but I’m pleased that Post Office management have moved quickly to maintain a temporary service over the next three weeks, albeit at a reduced level.

“By the end of this month, the service should be back up to its existing level of two mornings per week.

“I am grateful to the owners of the St Fergus village shop for continuing to provide a base for the outreach service in their premises throughout this time and I’m sure the local community will be relieved that Post Office services will continue to be available in St Fergus.”

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Whiteford Visits 'Taste of Grampian'

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Banff & Buchan MP Eilidh Whiteford has hailed this weekend’s ‘Taste of Grampian’ event as another success in promoting North-east food and drink.

The SNP MP was speaking after visiting the event at the Thainstone Centre on Saturday. Whilst there, she met with local entrepreneur Gregor Mackintosh, owner of Mackintosh of Glendaveny which produces the popular range of cold pressed rapeseed oils.

Mr Mackintosh had just been awarded the prize for Best Large Food Stand at the event.

Commenting, Dr Whiteford said:

Dr Eilidh Whiteford MP with Gregor Mackintosh
and the award for the 2011 Taste of Grampian
Best Large Food Stand
“Gregor is to be congratulated for building up an important local business which continues to go from strength to strength.

“The Mackintosh of Glendaveny range of cold pressed rapeseed oils has won numerous awards, including one here today at Taste of Grampian for Best Large Food Stand. It is fantastic to see a local business doing so well and one where, in Gregor, we have someone who is clearly very enthusiastic about future prospects.”


Turning to the Taste of Grampian event, Dr Whiteford continued:

“Taste of Grampian was extremely well-attended this year and had a real buzz about it. I think events such as this are a key part of promoting local produce, not only to a wider market, but particularly to the North-east. We so often overlook or take for granted some of the tremendous food and drink which are available right here on our doorsteps and not imported from hundreds of miles away after being mass-produced. Taste of Grampian provides a timely reminder that we should all make more of an effort to ‘shop local’.

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