When I was first elected in 2010, I pledged that I would always stick to my commitment to “Putting Lincoln First”
I would always ensure the voices of my Constituents were heard in Westminster as well as ensuring our wonderful City received the improvements it rightly deserved.
Having a Conservative Government, which like me, cares about the people and businesses in Lincoln certainly helps.
As I reiterated on the tenth anniversary of my Maiden Speech in Parliament, my priority was focussed on: “...enhancing and improving the infrastructure of our City and the surrounding areas as we all benefit through better education, work opportunities and transport links, be that if we live, work, study or are just visiting the lovely constituency of Lincoln and its position as the gateway to the greater County of Lincolnshire”.
The list below sets out a range of these achievements so far, with much more to come.
Whilst a number of the big projects have been completed or are starting, given the increasing popularity and importance of the City as a place to live, work, study and visit - there will always be more to support. Time never stands still in Lincoln as it remains as vibrant today as it was when the Romans were here. Tomorrow will be no different.
This is why being the Member of Parliament for Lincoln, Skellingthorpe, Bracebridge Heath and Waddington East is such an honour and a privilege - there is no better place in the UK.
KEY ACHIEVEMENTS FOR LINCOLN, SKELLINGTHORPE, BRACEBRIDGE HEATH & WADDINGTON EAST
Karl led the campaign to create a ring road around the City – despite being told when first elected in 2010, that this was unachievable. This will be in place by the end of this decade.
Furthermore, he has banged on Conservative Minister’s doors, led and supported campaigns, and always passionately argued the case for significant improvements. This includes new rail services, a new bus station, building railway pedestrian crossings and other improvements including tackling traffic bottlenecks.
The fact already that in January 2023, the Conservative Government has agreed to provide £20million to fund the essential new traffic bridge between Skellingthorpe Road to Tritton Road is clear proof of Karl’s effectiveness as the Member of Parliament for Lincoln.
At a national level and as a senior member of the Transport Select Committee in Parliament, Karl has led the campaign against the so-called ‘Smart Motorways’ introduced originally by a Labour Government. The current Government, due to political pressure from Karl and others, has decided to build no more and are currently undertaking a review.
Karl has also been successful in playing a leading national role in stopping the plans that would no longer allow new petrol/diesel cars and vans to be sold from 2030. This has now successfully been pushed back to 2035.
Lincoln “Ring Road”
Karl led the support with Lincolnshire County Council for the creation of a £122 million Lincoln Eastern bypass connecting the A158 Wragby Road with the A15 Sleaford Road. Opened in December 2020 and often referred to by many, as “McCartney Way”.
He also ensured the dualling of sections of the Western Bypass (A46/A15) around Lincoln. These sections were finished in 2013.
Karl worked closely with Lincolnshire County Council in securing £110 million from the Government to fund the North Hykeham Relief Road (Southern Bypass) linking the new Lincoln Eastern Bypass with the existing Western Bypass. This will create a ring road around Lincoln and will be completed by the end of the decade.
Other Road Improvements
Karl has actively campaigned for the Conservative Government to provide £20million to fund the essential new traffic bridge between Skellingthorpe Road and Tritton Road. The Government agreed this in January 2023, and it would not have happened without Karl’s leadership.
He has supported the increase in capacity and improvements in traffic flow at the A46 Riseholme roundabout which included an extra lane alongside the extra entrance and exit lanes at all approaches and exits. The work was completed in 2020.
He also secured funding from the Government for the £22 million East-West Link Road in the centre of Lincoln thereby providing a direct link from the High Street (at its junction with Tentercroft Street) to Pelham Bridge and Canwick Road. This meant traffic can bypass the City Centre’s level crossings. This was opened in 2016.
Karl has also successfully pushed for the funding of a range of bottleneck and pinch-point improvements including the upgrading of both the top and bottom of the hill on Canwick Road in the South-East, and Brant Road / Rookery Lane & Newark Road in the South-West. These works were completed in 2015.
Lincoln Transport Hub
Karl fully supported the creation of the Lincoln Transport Hub including persuading the Department of Transport to contribute £11 million to the project. This included a new bus station. The new transport hub was fully opened in 2018.
He supported the introduction of the successful Park and Ride scheme from the north of Lincoln into the City Centre. This was opened in 2017.
Railway Improvements (including pedestrian crossings)
As soon as he was first elected in 2010, he ensured there were direct trains again from Lincoln to London. These started in 2011 and there have been continual improvements which Karl has campaigned for including directly lobbying the rail companies.
He has improved cross-country train services, especially at weekends connecting Lincoln to the rest of the East Midlands, Lincolnshire and South Yorkshire. Karl is actively supporting the introduction of quicker speeds on these lines.
Karl led the campaign for the Lincoln High Street footbridge to be built by the level crossing, therefore allowing pedestrians to cross the railway line safely 24/7. This was opened in 2016.
He also campaigned to persuade Network Rail to fund an aesthetically pleasing pedestrian bridge over the railway by Lincoln's Brayford Wharf East. This was opened in 2019.
Securing Lincoln’s position as one of the Country’s leading national education centres has and always been a priority for Karl, given the brilliant universities, colleges and schools in the City. Below is a list of just some of his key achievements.
Karl worked with and fully supported Bishop Grosseteste University in being conferred university status in 2012.
He has supported the expansion of the City’s two prestigious Universities (16,000+ students) whilst encouraging them to play a fuller role in the business and civic life of Lincoln.
He played a full role in campaigning for the creation of Lincoln Medical School at Lincoln University which was opened in 2021.
He also campaigned for and supported the creation of the first new Engineering School in the UK for 20 years at the University of Lincoln.
He has been supporting the growing success of Lincoln College including its ground-breaking Air and Defence College. Karl has also successfully campaigned for more investment in further education and apprenticeships across the City.
The Conservative Government, which Karl fully supports, has continued to invest in Lincolnshire’s primary and secondary schools with continuing increases in funding. This can be also seen with recent increased funding for buildings such as at Lincoln Castle Academy, Lincoln Manor Leas' Junior and Infants schools, and Bracebridge Heath St John's Primary Academy
Karl worked with the Government to bring up school standards, so the vast majority of schools in Lincolnare rated as Outstanding or Good by Ofsted.
He has also supported new facilities which have been funded by the Conservative Government recently such as the new St Giles Community Centre, new community facilities at the LNER Stadium and a brand new school, St Christopher’s Primary School on Skellingthorpe Road.
HEALTH AND SOCIAL CARE
Karl has always championed the need for further investment in local health services and social care. Supporting further investment in Lincoln County Hospital and improving its performance remains a key priority. Below is a list of just some of his key achievements.
He successfully lobbied the Conservative Government to increase funding and support for Lincoln County Hospital including:
- £7 million investment in the A&E facilities
- new mental health wards
- new investment into the neonatal intensive care unit
- new mobile breast cancer screening unit
Karl campaigned for and supported the creation of Lincoln Medical School at Lincoln University which was opened in 2021.
He also supported the creation of a Centre for Innovation in Rural Health in the heart of Lincoln with an investment announced in 2020 of £1.3 million.
Karl successfully lobbied the Conservative Government to help with rough sleeping in the City with a positive result in 2020 when the Government gave the City Council over £1 million to support some of the most vulnerable people in our community.
HERITAGE AND CULTURE
Karl is a champion of the City’s wonderful heritage given it is the jewel in the crown not only within the East Midlands but across the whole of the UK too.
As a Member of Parliament, he has always campaigned and supported new investment and raised the profile of the City’s history and culture – making it a key tourist destination for visitors from across the UK and the world.
His many and wide-ranging achievements in this area are set out below:
He successfully lobbied the Conservative Government to provide Lincoln with £19 million at the end of March 2020 from its Towns Deal Fund. This is supporting 14 projects from the restoration of the Central Market in the heart of the City, the restoration of Greyfriars and also the re-opening and redevelopment of the Drill Hall. This is in addition to the funding for a range of other key projects including funding to support the redevelopment of the Cornhill Quarter.
He championed the wonderful Lincoln Cathedral including backing successful Lottery bids for the Lincoln Cathedral Connected project and for Government investment to support repairs and its upkeep.
Karl also supported extra investment and helped raise the profile of Lincoln Castle including the Magna Carta Centre which was opened on the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta. A 1215 copy of the Magna Carta can be found next to the 1217 Charter of the Forest at Lincoln Castle which is the only place in the world where the two documents can be seen side by side.
Karl is a champion for more tourism into the City and as well as the above, he promotes the Museum of Lincolnshire Life, The Collection and especially The Usher Gallery.
Karl also recognises the importance of civic life in the City and has always supported the Civic Trust, the various Rotary Clubs of Lincoln and the hundreds of community groups that enrich the life of the City.
As Lincoln's Member of Parliament, Karl supported the need for the Conservative Government’s Covid-19 Culture Recovery Fund to include Lincoln’s thriving arts community which has seen nine arts organisations receiving over £300,000 in support. In addition, twelve churches in the Lincoln diocese have received £1.8 million, and Lincoln Cathedral has received £1.2 million from this fund.
He has played a key role in opposing the Labour Party’s terrible decision to close the world-famous Lincoln Christmas Market, damaging businesses, tourism and the reputation of the City. As he has said: “Our Christmas Market is part of the city's rich heritage as much as the cathedral, castle and the Romans. To cancel it will clearly damage tourism, traders and Lincoln's way of life. It is a shallow, stupid and shoddy decision.”
CRIME AND POLICING
Karl has resisted attempts to close Lincoln Prison and has campaigned for the Government to invest in extra prison places, thereby helping to reduce overcrowding.
Karl has ensured the delivery of the Conservative Government’s 2019 manifesto for an extra 20,000 police officers. This has included ensuring that Lincoln and Lincolnshire as a whole gain their fair share of Police funding. Over 160 extra police officers have been recruited since the end of 2019.
BUSINESS INVESTMENT AND JOBS
Karl has continuously championed the case for more funding into the City and is currently a member of Lincoln’s Town Deal Board.
Recent investments that Karl has championed include:
- £19 million from the Conservative Government’s Towns Fund deals announced in the 2021 Budget which are supporting 14 projects across the City.
- Strengthening the riverside walls along Foss Bank, as part of a £6 million Conservative Government investment in the City’s flood defences.
- £3.4 million to support Lincoln Science and Innovation Park (Phase 2).
- £1 million in Conservative Government cash to revamp the High Street end of Cornhill.
- £87,000 from the Conservative Government’s Welcome Back Fund to help local high streets reopen and attract shoppers and tourists.
- £1.3 million for the Centre for Innovation in Rural Health.
Karl campaigns to ensure that Lincoln remains a business-friendly City and leverages its position as a UK-leading science, innovation and engineering centre. This includes world-leading companies such as Siemens, Bifrangi and Inzpire.
He has supported crucial business developments such as the creation of the Lincoln Science and Innovation Park to create a world-class environment for science, research and innovation in the City. This had an extra £3.4 million of Government support being earmarked. for Phase Two of its development which is due to be completed in early 2022.
Karl always advocates local employment programmes to help people into work and also Apprenticeships and other related skills schemes. He has run many successful job fairs and recently opened the 2021 Greater Lincolnshire LEP online Jobs Fair too.
Even before Karl was first elected as the Member of Parliament for Lincoln, he was at the forefront of the successful campaign to keep the Bailgate Post Office open.
Karl has lobbied the Conservative Government for more investment in the City’s flood defences and with £6 million in funding for the Lincoln Flood Defences Project, this will maintain the existing standard of flood-risk protection for around 4,000 homes and businesses in Lincoln.
He raised concerns about the environmental (including flooding), increased traffic congestion and infrastructure impact (especially schools and health service) of the Labour City Council’s Western Growth Corridor (Swanpool) scheme, which includes over 3,000 houses.
He will continue to hold the City Council to account on this issue, whilst ensuring that it lobbies the Government to ensure it provides infrastructure funding (as he has successfully done with respect to the road bridge between Skellingthorpe Road and Tritton Road).
ROYAL AIR FORCE
Karl always supports the Royal Air Force and the Armed Forces more widely – especially RAF Waddington which is in his constituency.
Supported the £94 million investment into RAF Waddington from 2021 by the Conservative Government. This is because it has been chosen as the home of the Protector International Training Centre.
Alongside Sir Edward Leigh MP, he campaigned to ensure that the Red Arrows base remains in Lincolnshire, with the world-famous air display team transferring to RAF Waddington in 2022.