The weekend ahead of Easter is without doubt the right time for Ramsbottom to host its Annual Chocolate Festival. I went at the start on Saturday when things were still really to get going but it was clear that it was a tremendous success. The report in the Lancashire Telegraph can be read here. I was out campaigning with our excellent local government candidate for Ramsbottom Ian Bevan. In addition to a walkabout in Ramsbottom we also called in to the Spring Fair at St.Paul’s Church.
From Ramsbottom I called in to Crompton Meadows (home to Tottington St. John’s Cricket Club) to take a look at the works being carried out to install new drains on part of the outfield which is particularly prone to waterlogging.
In the evening Sue and I attended Bolton Road Methodists Church where the Ramsbottom Choral Society were performing Handel’s Messiah.
Yesterday, After attending church in the morning Sue and I attended the Palm Sunday lunch in the Parish Hall. I was later interviewed for one hour on The Politics Show on Bury’s Project 29 radio station
Sue and I attended the Charter Night Dinner of the Rotary Club of Bury at The Bolholt Hotel Walshaw this evening. Over 100 guests including the Deputy Mayor of Bury Councillor Peter Ashworth enjoyed a roast lamb dinner and entertainment from Bernie Flint who at the start of his career won the television talent show Opportunity Knocks for 12 consecutive weeks. It was a pleasant break after a busy week of campaigning.
In recent years I have come to learn that the devil is often in the detail when it comes to Labour Budgets. Rarely is the detail disclosed in what the Chancellor says on the floor of the House of Commons.
Yesterday was no exception.
By freezing the individual personal allowance (the amount every taxpayer is permitted to earn before they start to pay income tax) every taxpayer is £48 a year worse off and £96 a year worse off for a married couple (or indeed an unmarried couple!)
The size of the deficit is now so great that the Government will have to borrow more this year and next year than the entire receipts from income tax! Astonishing.
Today has been a good example of the diverse life of a Parliamentary Candidate. As usual I was up early to catch up on the Sunday papers online and check my emails. Then I had feed CeeCee and take him out for his first walk of the day.
Then straight down to church at St. Anne’s in Tottington for the 10.15am service. The guest preacher today was the Very Reverend Christopher Armstrong the Dean of Blackburn. Despite the service lasting a little longer than normal I managed to get down into Bury to meet up with the film crew from the BBC who were filming a live interview by the Peel Statue with the Labour and Liberal Democrat Candidates and myself for The Politics Show. All went ok and I was straight off to my next engagement.
A short drive to the official opening of the new facilities at the Diggle Lane Allotments. They are a really enthusiatic and go ahead group who have a thriving Allotment Society. Thanks to their hardwork they have managed to obtain sufficient funding to have some organic toilets installed which might sound trivial but for all the Allotments holders who want to spend a day tending their patch it will make life so much easier when they need to spend a penny.
From there I nipped back home and collected Susan and CeeCee and went to visit the Pets in Need Spring Fair at Greenmount Old School. Sue and I have been sponsoring one of the cared for animals Cassie but unfortunately we were notified a while ago that Cassie had died so today we renewed our Sponsorship this time for a pair of miniature donkeys called Blackberry and Bramble. After grabbing a bite to eat and buying some scrumptious home made cakes it was back home to deal with my phone calls.
Today after helping deliver some more leaflets in Church Ward I popped down to our Constituency Office to record an interview for Granada Television who are doing a series of Constituency profiles for broadcast during the period of the General Election campaign.
CeeCee on his second birthday with his new toys
This morning Sue and I had attended the Requiem Mass held at St. Joseph’s R.C. church in Bury for Margaret Robinson who sadly passed away last week. Margaret was a tireless worker for charity and especially Bury Hospice and she will be sadly missed.
Today is CeeCee’s second birthday and he has celebrated with some new toys and lots of treats.
UPDATE CeeCee is delighted that the Labour Party have done a u-turn and dropped their ridiculous plans for a dog tax that would only have penalised responsible dog owners.
This morning Sue and I attended a special Mothering Sunday service at St.Anne’s Church in Tottington where the Archdeacon of Bolton the Venerable David Bailey was the guest preacher.
Then, in common no doubt with millions of families across the Country, we had Sue’s Mum and Dad over so we could all have Sunday lunch together.