AN Essex MP has called for investment in poorer areas in the East.

Speaking during a debate into the “levelling up” agenda in Westminster Hall, Clacton MP Giles Watling said areas, such as Tendring, need investment as much as deprived towns in the North.

“The East needs to be levelled up in the same way as the rest of the country - we need to put in extra effort for areas like Clacton,” he said.

“The East is a very deceptive term as it is often a catch all term for ‘rich and leafy region’.

"But we have some of the most deprived pockets in the nation with some of our coastal areas.”

He added that Tendring should not be “lumped” in with richer parts of the East.

He added that roads should also not be ignored in the drive to cut carbon emissions.

“There is a consensus that we need to get people out of cars,” he said. “This can work in London where there is a massive public transport network.

“However, for lots of us with smaller town and village networks, we don’t have this luxury of an anti-car plan.

“We have smaller, ageing and crumbling roads, and without upgrades here, we will only fall further behind.”