Scarborough and Whitby Labour Parliamentary candidate 'shocked and dismayed' at Government's 'lack of action' to support Sirius Minerals

Sirius Minerals' HQ in Eastfield.
Sirius Minerals' HQ in Eastfield.

Scarborough and Whitby's Labour Parliamentary candidate has attacked the Government for declining to offer financial help to Sirius Minerals.

The company took a bad hit on Tuesday after it announced it couldn't raise the money it needed to fund the next phase of construction at Woodsmith Mine.

Local Labour Parliamentary candidate Hugo Fearnley.

Local Labour Parliamentary candidate Hugo Fearnley.

Sirius had tried to resolve the situation by approaching the Government but its request for help was refused.

Hugo Fearnley said: "Like many people in this constituency, I am both shocked and dismayed at the lack of action from the Tories. Vital employment opportunities and economic growth for the people of Whitby, Scarborough and Teesside, are now at risk.

"This Government and the local Tory MPs, Robert Goodwill and Simon Clarke love to trumpet the 'Northern Powerhouse'; but their lack of action for the people of this area is there for all to see once again.

"Mr Johnson said he was committed to supporting the North but he’s turned his back on us at his first test, putting thousands of jobs at risk. Labour would work with Sirius to examine the support a Labour Government could provide.”

MP Robert Goodwill said he'd been supporting Sirius "every step of the way" and that he spoke to the Prime Minister and Treasury at the start of the month.

The best option, he said, was for the company to find a partner "with expertise and capital". However, should it become clear that alternatives can’t be found, Mr Goodwill acknowledged that “we may need to go back to the Government”.

Mr Fearnley added: “Having grown up here, I have seen the decline of the fishing industry and know we have a serious lack of decent, well paid jobs in the constituency. Many local folk have invested directly in the mine as they saw real potential; not just for themselves but for the development of the whole area.

"I am in contact with Rebecca Long-Bailey, Shadow Business Secretary, and I am seeking meetings with representatives of Sirius Minerals to further understand the current funding challenges and to discuss ways in which a future Labour Government could potentially support the project.”