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Point of Order

Volume 732: debated on Thursday 11 May 2023

On a point of order, Mr Deputy Speaker. I seek your advice on how I and my hon. Friend the Member for Richmond Park (Sarah Olney) might go about securing a response from the Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, the hon. Member for Taunton Deane (Rebecca Pow) to correspondence we jointly sent to her over 10 weeks ago.

My hon. Friend and I are seeking an urgent meeting with the Minister to discuss plans by Thames Water to abstract water from the River Thames near Teddington and Ham in our constituencies, and to replace it with treated effluent. As you can imagine, Mr Deputy Speaker, thousands of our constituents have voiced their concern about the scheme and are eager to hear the position of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, which has a pivotal role in Thames Water’s plans progressing. Having already chased the Minister’s private office, how can my hon. Friend and I secure a response to our letter?

I thank the hon. Lady for giving notice to the Chair of this point of order about the unsatisfactory state of affairs that she has described. Letters from hon. Members to Ministers should be dealt with promptly. The hon. Member has put her and her hon. Friend’s concerns on the record, and they will have been heard by those on the Government Front Bench. I trust that this will lead to a satisfactory conclusion in the very near future, but if it does not, there are a number of avenues open to her. She can table questions and, potentially, she can also seek an Adjournment debate. The Table Office will be able to advise her on how to go about that.