I was delighted to welcome Michelle and Simon Houghton to Parliament last week. It was great to give them a tour and to show them some of the fantastic pieces of history that are present throughout the estate. I remember how lucky I am, each day, that I have been elected to represent the good folk of Ashfield and that because of this, I can call the House of Commons my workplace. It is certainly a big difference to how I started my working life, down the pits. If you are a constituent and would like a tour, please don’t hesitate to email me.
I am happy to announce a generous Christmas giveaway from 19 year old Max, from Kirkby, who is kindly giving away an Xbox and a PlayStation 4, to two struggling families in the run up to the festive period. Max and his father, Karly, have asked me to help find two deserving families in Ashfield who will receive one of these consoles, alongside a controller and plenty of games. Please email email@example.com and include your home address, as well as a few lines on how much one of these gifts would be appreciated this Christmas.
I was glad to hear many of the announcements made by the Chancellor in the Autumn Statement, on Wednesday. The Chancellor confirmed the pension triple lock, a decision I wholeheartedly support.
My colleague, Ben Bradley MP, has continued to deliver on his promise to improve transport around Nottinghamshire. Nottinghamshire County Council announced that Ashfield, amongst other areas, will benefit from four new Nottsbus On Demand zones across the county. This new service will be designed to give passengers more flexibility.
On Friday, I was busy out and about talking to constituents as part of my weekly visits. I met with angry Jacksdale residents who are understandably furious with the Ashfield Independents decision to pass a housing development, on greenbelt land. I have always said that without a local plan, there is no piece of land across the constituency, that is safe from the Ashfield Independent’s incompetence. They have continued to show a complete disregard to local views and are determined to press ahead with plans like this, despite resident’s frustrations.
On Saturday, I visited 1st Skegby Scouts on their weekend away at an adventure camp. I was treated to a full English breakfast, which was very much appreciated, and then I played dominoes with 13 year old Jacob. I lost the bet I had with him so now I have to donate £250 to the Scout group, which will go towards buying a new mess tent.
I am very happy to also retain my position as Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party, after the Prime Minister’s re-shuffle. I have spent many months touring the country, visiting various Conservative associations, to chat to members and to discuss my political journey.