SNP MP and member of the Scottish Affairs Committee Margaret Ferrier has said the closure of Job Centre Plus offices around Scotland is ‘completely incoherent’ – and ‘need to go back to the drawing board’ urgently.

The comments come as the cross party Westminster Committee publishes its report into the Tory plans to axe a long list of office locations – including a total of eight in the Glasgow area – causing needless uncertainty for staff and for service users.

SNP MPs have raised the issues at Westminster on many occasions and it has become abundantly clear that the Tories have completely failed to make any kind of plans and demonstrate a complete lack of any kind of strategic thinking.

Margaret Ferrier MP commented:

“These Tory plans are rightly condemned by the committee for what they are – completely incoherent and inadequate. The government needs to go back to the drawing board urgently.

“The Tories present this as some kind of well thought out, planned programme long-term planning but we have found that it is anything but – and is more of an opportunistic cost cutting exercise.

“Our report also find that the treatment of staff and service users fell short of what should be expected. This scattergun and ill thought through plan will disrupt so many people who depend on the centres for help and advice on getting into work.

“Jobcentre Plus offices are there to serve their communities, when people are often at their most vulnerable, these proposals will fail to do this adequately. The UK Government must look at this policy again and come back with a coherent solution that works for the people who use the service, as well as being value for money.”



Link to the Scottish Affairs Committee report


Local MP Margaret Ferrier has welcomed the success of Cambuslang’s Cinnamon in an online vote to find the area’s best South Asian restaurant as part of the annual Tiffin Cup competition.

Ms Ferrier held the poll on her Facebook page last week to help determine her entry into the UK-wide competition, which is organised by MPs to find the best South Asian restaurant across the UK.

Cinammon beat off competition from two other participating local restaurants in the online vote, which closed on Friday 24 March. The winning restaurant will now be put forward by Ms Ferrier to compete in the Tiffin Cup at UK level.

Commenting, Margaret Ferrier MP said:

“I am delighted that Cambuslang’s Cinammon restaurant has been chosen by the public as my entry in the Tiffin Cup competition 2017 and would like to congratulate them on their success.

“Instead of selecting one South Asian restaurant myself, I wanted to make sure my choice was the public’s pick, and that’s why I held an online poll on my Facebook page to choose my nomination.

“Last year, Mushtaq’s of Hamilton won the top prize in Scotland and went on to compete in the UK-wide final in London, and I wish Cinammon all the best as they seek to achieve similar or even greater success.”




Margaret Ferrier has hailed broadband cabinet upgrades in Newton Farm, calling it “a very welcome end to this long-running saga”.

The Cambuslang MP has been campaigning for a year and a half to ensure that residents secure access to high speed fibre broadband, and although some upgrades have already been deployed, a large number of residents are still lacking reliable web connections due to capacity issues on some broadband cabinets in the estate.

It has now been confirmed in an email from Openreach to Ms Ferrier that two broadband cabinets which serve the area are in the process of having their capacity increased, with work expected to be complete by the end of March.

Local MSP Clare Haughey recently secured assurances from the Scottish Government that it will take steps to ensure that residents of new housing developments do not suffer the same ordeal in future.

Commenting, Margaret Ferrier MP said:

“This is a very welcome end to this long-running saga. Newton Farm’s distance from the exchange means that conventional broadband speeds are incredibly slow on the estate – reportedly not even good enough to stream video properly.

“Fast internet is becoming a modern necessity – something far more than a luxury. Many Newton Farm constituents have contacted me to advise of how this has stopped them working from home, and damaged their businesses.

“Although we have already been successful in having high-speed fibre broadband rolled out in the area, high demand resulted in some homes being able to connect due to capacity issues on local cabinets. These upgrades will ensure that everyone will be able to access the service.”



Email from Openreach:

Dear Margaret

I’m replying to your letter of 11 January to Clive Selley on behalf of your constituents in Newton Farm, Cambuslang.

I appreciate your constituents frustration at being unable to obtain fibre broadband at the present time, and have looked into this.

As you are aware, this area is served by Cambuslang exchange via cabinets 19 and 36. The takeup of fibre broadband at both these cabinets have been unexpectedly high which sadly means that we have run out of capacity to take any new orders.

However, the good news is that we are now in the process of increasing capacity to both these cabinets by installing additional infrastructure. This is complex civil engineering work and the estimated completion date is by the end of March 2017. I should add that this date is subject to change if we experience any unforeseen technical issues.

I suggest that your constituents keeps in touch with their own Service Providers who can place an order once this work has been completed. They can also keep an eye on our web link below which is updated with our latest plans:

When both these cabinets are ready to accept new fibre broadband orders the information will be given via this link.

I’m sorry we cannot provide an immediate resolution for your constituents involved here but I trust they will be encouraged to know that we are working on a solution to increase capacity so that fibre broadband is available to more residents in the local area.

Kind Regards

Sharon Layton
Customer Resolutions
High level Complaints



Following the news that TSB are to close their Cambuslang branch, Margaret Ferrier MP, Clare Haughey MSP and Cllr Clare McColl have issued the following statement:

“We are incredibly disappointed with the news that TSB will be closing its Cambuslang branch. Within the space of less than a year, all three banks which were in the town will have vanished. Coupled with the proposed removal of the Jobcentre, these closures are disastrous for the Main Street.

“We recently met with Clydesdale Bank, and have secured a meeting with TSB officials in the coming weeks. As local elected representatives for the area, we intend to continue working constructively together on this issue, and will be engaging with local stakeholders regarding the future of the Main Street.

“Some shopkeepers have already reported a drop in footfall following the closure of RBS – once Clydesdale, TSB and the Jobcentre go, the situation will become much worse and local businesses could be forced to reassess their commercial viability. We will not watch on as unit after unit becomes empty – the Main Street cannot be allowed to die by a thousand cuts.”



Cambuslang SNP politicians Margaret Ferrier MP, Clare Haughey MSP, and Councillor Clare McColl have met with senior officials from Clydesdale Bank to discuss plans to close the branch in the town.

The three local elected representatives set up the meeting with Allison Hair, Head of Clydesdale’s Customer Banking Centres in Scotland, and Jamie Maxton, the bank’s Government Relations Manager, following the recent announcement of the branch closure.

The Main Street premises is set to shut its doors on June 8 as one of the 40 outlets in Scotland to close in a cost-cutting move which the bank say will allow investment in the remaining branch network and its digital platforms. 

In a joint statement released by the politicians after the meeting, they expressed disappointment that the bank intends to proceed with the closure, and committed to further engagement with Clydesdale to ensure that the impact on customers will be lessened where possible.

Commenting, Margaret Ferrier MP, Clare Haughey MSP and Councillor Clare McColl said:

“We are disappointed that the bank’s decision appears to be final, despite the many concerns that we have raised. We are committed, however, to working constructively over the coming weeks and months to ensure that the impact on customers and the local area is minimised wherever possible.

“Make no mistake though – this will be another hammer blow to the Main Street, with local shop owners already reporting lower footfall following the closure of RBS. Local people are currently showing their strength of feeling by signing a petition that we have organised, which we still intend to present to the bank.

“It is important to us that people who do not use online banking are not left behind. The bank has advised that some banking services will be available at the local Post Office, and we have secured a commitment that they will meet with them to raise our concerns over issues such as capacity and privacy.

“We are now also keen to secure the future of the Rutherglen branch, and will continue to push the bank to ensure that it will be included in branch network investment plans.”