Unemployment in East Anglia falls by 2,000

Unemployment in the region has decreased by 2,000, as the number of people in work nationally reaches its highest level since records began.

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Norfolk: Liz Truss "delighted" to have been appointed Environment Secretary

Liz Truss.
Liz Truss. Credit: PA

South West Norfolk MP Liz Truss has made her first appearance in the Commons today as Environment Secretary.

Just two days after being given her new job in the latest Cabient reshuffle she faced questions in the Commons on the Environment.

Ms Truss, who is 38, has been an MP for just four years.

"I'm delighted to have been appointed to this important role, and to have such an early opportunity to answer questions.

In the 48 hours since my appointment, I've not quite been able to speak to everyone, or look at every issue, but I know from my work in Norfolk how vital this department is."

– Liz Truss, Environment Secretary

Read more: Why Liz Truss is one of the rising stars of the 2010 Tory intake

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Writtle in Essex was the hottest place in the UK on Wednesday

Writtle near Chelmsford recorded the highest temperature in the UK on Wednesday 16 July with a maximum of 27.9°C (82.2°F).

It is forecast to get much hotter on Thursday and Friday and the Met Office has issued a heat-health alert.

Other highs in the Anglia region on Wednesday 16 July

  • 27.3°C in Cavendish, Suffolk
  • 26.7°C in Santon Downham, Suffolk
  • 26.5°C at Andrewsfield near Braintree, Essex
  • 26.2°C in Wattisham, Suffolk
  • 26.1°C in Weybourne, Norfolk
  • 25.7°C in Cromer, Norfolk

What next for Cambridgeshire MP Andrew Lansley?

As the fall-out from Dave Cameron's reshuffle continues, Cambridgeshire MP Andrew Lansley has confirmed he is not only out of the cabinet but is also stepping down from parliament at the next election.

The former Health Secretary, who was first elected in 1997, said he told the Prime Minister of his decision earlier this year.

He now hopes to get an as-yet unknown "international role".

Matthew Hudson reports on what's next for the South Cambridgeshire MP.

Bedfordshire MP made Prisons Minister

Andrew Selous MP
Andrew Selous has been appointed prisons minister.

A Bedfordshire MP has been made prisons minister as David Cameron continues his cabinet reshuffle.

Andrew Selous, who represents South West Bedfordshire, has been appointed as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Justice with special responsibility for HM Prison and Probation Service.

He said: “I am very pleased and honoured to be given this appointment by the Prime Minister and look forward to working in the Ministry of Justice as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State.

"I will have responsibility for the prison and probation service and other areas relating to the work carried out by the Ministry of Justice."

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Country Land and Business Association welcome Truss appointment

Liz Truss.
Liz Truss. Credit: PA

The Country Land and Business Association in the East has welcomed the promotion of Norfolk MP Liz Truss to Environment Minister.

The MP for South West Norfolk takes over from Owen Paterson.

The CLA says it hopes she will focus on an agenda which will assure the future of a living and working countryside.

Andrew Lansley to step down as South Cambridgeshire MP

Andrew Lansley MP.
Andrew Lansley MP. Credit: PA

Former Cabinet minister Andrew Lansley has announced he is stepping down from Parliament at the general election and hopes to get an "international" role.

In a letter to David Cameron, the South Cambridgeshire MP said he told the Prime Minister earlier this year that he would not be seeking re-election.

"You supported my ambition to continue my life of public service in challenging and important roles," he wrote. "I am grateful to you now for expressing your support for me to take such a role in international public service in the months ahead."

The missive does not make clear what post Mr Lansley, who was replaced as Leader of the House of Commons by William Hague, is referring to.

There had been widespread speculation that he could be nominated as the UK's next European commissioner, but Mr Cameron disclosed today that the former Leader of the Lords, Lord Hill, had been put forward.

In his response to Mr Lansley, the premier wrote: "You have much more to give in terms of public service, and I look forward to being able to support you in doing so in the months and years ahead."

Read more: Exchange of letters from Andrew Lansley and PM

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