By Sarah Atherton

MP for Wrexham

Parking concerns in Wrexham have been a priority of mine since I had been contacted by many of my worried constituents. During a cost-of-living crisis, Wrexham residents should not be subjected to extortionate and frankly unfair parking fines.

Last year, I launched a survey to assess parking options in Wrexham, during which I heard about the costly issues that Wrexham residents face when parking in the town. 69% said that they were dissatisfied with the availability of car parking spaces in Wrexham, and many commented on the sharp practices of private car parking firms, like Euro Car Parks who manage Wrexham’s Island Green car park. However, I am pleased that the Council’s ‘free after 11 am’ in Council-run cark parks continues.

Following this, I raised my constituents’ concerns to Ministers and in response, the UK Government announced a package of measures in February 2022 that would see charges reduced from £100 to £50, and a new Code of Practice to help keep ‘cowboy’ private parking firms in check. However, this has been put on hold due to legal challenges from the parking companies. To get the ball rolling, I raised this in the Chamber and asked for an update on the Government’s policy so we can ensure that tyrannical firms are kept in check.

I will continue to push for the implementation of the UK Government’s crackdown on parking firms so that my constituents can park worry-free in Wrexham.

Ahead of Wrexham Council submitting their bid to the UK Government’s Levelling Up Fund, it was an honour to join Spencer Harris, organiser of the petition in delivering the 16,000-signature petition to No.10. The petition shows the strength of feeling across the globe for the redevelopment of the Racecourse Ground’s Kop Stand, which forms part of our Levelling Up Fund bid.

Currently, if you live in Wrexham and want to watch an international game, you need to travel to Swansea or Cardiff to do so. The redevelopment of the Kop Stand would allow Wrexham to, once again, host international sporting events by increasing the capacity of the stadium. The sheer number of residents who have supported the petition proves the value and importance of the Government’s Levelling Up Fund, after Wrexham has been neglected by Labour for two decades. Let's all keep our fingers crossed for a successful outcome!

To showcase the best of the Welsh military footprint, I hosted in Parliament, on behalf of Airbus, two of Wrexham’s Defence Industry players, Wrexham Glyndwr University and Tritech. During the event, we witnessed a multi-million-pound signing for the major Space Satellite Contract. I look forward to continuing to work closely with Airbus in all aspects of their work to ensure we bring economic growth and build upon the strong foundation of jobs in Northeast Wales.

I also hosted the Defence and Security International (DSEI) Parliamentary reception last week and as I explained in my opening speech, with the current situation in Ukraine Defence and Security has never been so important. It is only right that the UK Government has made it their priority to keep Europe safe by increasing defence spending from 2.3% to 2.5% of GDP by 2030. As a member of the Defence Select Committee, I am proud of the UK Government’s powerful record on defence spending and policy.

As always, if you are resident in Wrexham and need my assistance with any local or national issue, please contact me by emailing