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St Ives

Duration:
50 minutes
First broadcast:
Friday 09 September 2011

Jonathan Dimbleby presents a topical discussion of news and politics from the St Ives Festival in Cornwall with Guardian columnist and National Trust chairman, Simon Jenkins; Director of Liberty Shami Chakrabarti; Chairman of the Health Select Committee, Conservative MP Stephen Dorrell; and Labour MP Ben Bradshaw.

Producer Victoria Wakely

Presenter Jonathan Dimbleby.

  • This week's panel

    Simon Jenkins is a writer, chairman of the National Trust and columnist for The Guardian. Simon became editor of the Evening Standard in 1976, and then became political editor of The Economist. In 1990, he became editor of The Times. As an author he has written about politics, the history and architecture of London, and has also catalogued England's Thousand Best Houses and Best Churches.

    Ben Bradshaw has been Labour MP for Exeter since 1997 and was the official spokesman for Labour’s unsuccessful campaign for a yes vote in May’s referendum on the alternative vote. Until last year’s general election he had been Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport for a year. He was Minister of State for Health from 2007 to 2009.

    Shami Chakrabarti is Director of the human rights group Liberty. A barrister by training, she worked with the Home Office, advising ministers in both Labour and Conservative Governments on a range of policy issues before joining Liberty in 2001 as one of its lawyers, becoming Director in 2003. In 2007, she was appointed a CBE.

    Stephen Dorrell is Chairman of the Health Select Committee. In 1979 he became the youngest member of the Commons, and the first Conservative MP for Loughborough since 1945. In the 1997 General Election, he won the new seat of Charnwood. He has previously held ministerial positions in the Department of Health, Department of Culture, Media and Sport, and Department of Education.

  • This week's questions

    1. Are we any safer as a result of the so-called "War on Terror" waged since 9/11?

    2. On the news we have seen increasing numbers of people reliant on food banks to eat in Cornwall. Would it be moral to consider reducing taxes on those earning more than £150,000 when others are struggling to survive?

    3. Does the panel think that reforms to Britain's planning system are "imperative" for Britain's economy?

    4. With the local MP for St Ives, Andrew George, being a vocal opponent of the health bill which passed through the Commons this week, are the Government's reforms essential for a more democratic NHS, or an attempt to privatise the NHS by the back door?

    5. Do members of the panel take their holidays in the UK? If not, why not?

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