Grant Shapps

Smart meter roll out in bit of a mess, says MP
The roll-out of smart energy meters comes in for criticism for delays and concerns over promised savings.

Herts MP joins calls for Govia franchise removal

The MP for Hitchin and Harpenden, Bim Afolami, has joined calls for Govia Thameslink to be stripped of its franchise if disruption on Thameslink and Great Northern trains continues.

Cramped train
Damien Stephenson

Passengers have been warned to expect several more weeks of delays and cancellations because of a new timetable.

The Conservative MP for Welwyn Hatfield, Grant Shapps, has already called for the secretary of state to look at ending the franchise now rather than in 2021

In the House of Commons, his fellow Conservative Mr Afolami asked transport minister Jo Johnson to reassure him and his constituents the government "will do everything it can to force Govia Thameslink to drastically improve its performance or be stripped of its franchise".

Mr Johnson said: "This week's timetable is the first phase of a totally recast timetable which will deliver in time the full benefits of the £7bn Thameslink programme."

Grant Shapps: Results 'interesting and patchy'

Grant Shapps, the MP for Welwyn Hatfield and the former Conservative party chairman, has been speaking about the results so far in the local elections.

Mr Shapps described the results as "interesting" and "very patchy".

Grant Shapps

"After you've been in power for a while you do expect to be losing seats, and so far - at least tonight and in the last eight years - that doesn't seem to happen in the way you would traditionally expect," he said.

Mr Shapps went on to highlight the poor performance from UKIP.

"The day after these elections four years ago, all my interviews were trying to explain how UKIP had come through so strongly. Today, my successors will be explaining how UKIP has virtually disappeared off the map."

'We should be the biggest economy in Europe'

'We should be the biggest economy in Europe'
A former Conservative Party Chairman has told the Westminster Hour that the UK "cries out" for a big vision. Grant Shapps said "you need an economy which is bigger, perhaps we should have an objective, maybe we should say that we have a plan over 30 years to become the biggest economy in Europe by the middle of the century and therefore be able to afford to do more stuff". Last year the MP, who represents Welwyn Hatfield, led a failed campaign to end Theresa May's premiership.