Andrew Bingham (High Peak) (Con): Thank you, Mr Deputy Speaker, for allowing me the opportunity to deliver my maiden speech in the House. May I compliment preceding speakers from across the country who have given their own maiden speeches today? The right hon. Member for Oldham West and Royton (Mr Meacher) did not make his maiden speech, but I compliment him on a speech he made in the House some time ago on post offices, and on speaking against the then Government.

I begin my speech by acknowledging and paying tribute to my predecessor, Tom Levitt, who was MP for High Peak for 13 years from 1997. In my seven years as a candidate in High Peak, he always treated me with the courtesy befitting a Member of the House. A steadfastly loyal Member of Parliament, and an assiduous attender of debates, he took the decision late last year not to stand for re-election-an action to which he referred in his maiden speech 13 years ago as "the chicken run".

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Andrew Bingham (High Peak) (Con): I agree with what my hon. Friend has said about the banks. Will he also acknowledge that hard-working counter staff are being criticised by members of the public although they are not to blame for the difficulties that the banks have caused? They have been working very hard, and they are being unfairly criticised.

Nick de Bois: I thank my hon. Friend for highlighting that distinction. Indeed, it does not apply only to those working on the shop floor. Many senior managers are clearly being directed to follow a policy which-I am extremely pleased to note from the Budget-we are prepared to challenge. The Red Book refers to a review of the way in which banks should respond to the need to lend in the future. I realise that Britain needs its banks, but the banks need to play their part openly and honestly, and I look forward to seeing that happen. It is a key part of the proposals outlined in the Red Book.

16. Andrew Bingham: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will prioritise funding for a solution to traffic congestion in Glossop and Tintwistle.

Norman Baker: In his written ministerial statement to the House on 10 June 2010, Official Report, column 35WS, regarding major schemes the Secretary of State for Transport made it clear that the Department will not be able to identify those major investments that can be supported until the conclusion of the Government's spending review in the autumn.

Therefore at this time I am afraid that I cannot provide any assurances on funding for a solution to traffic congestion in Glossop and Tintwistle.

Andrew Bingham (High Peak) (Con): We have all received lots of letters from EMAG, as candidates and as Members of Parliament, but two things have not been mentioned today-the dependants of policyholders who are now deceased because there has been such delay, and the issue of not means-testing such people. Does my hon. Friend agree?

Nicola Blackwood: I believe that those issues were raised on 17 March and that there might have been a subsequent commitment. However, hearing the Minister's confirmation would be helpful.

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