Better Off Out

The Daily Express has today become the first national newspaper to call and campaign for Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union. I warmly applaud their decision and I have been out and bought my copy.

Lighter Later

On Friday 3rd December the Daylight Saving Bill is scheduled to have its Second Reading in the House of Commons. Although the Bill is not available online yet I understand it will seek to require the government to conduct an assessment as to whether there is merit in moving our clocks permanently forward by one hour so that there will be lighter evenings and darker mornings. Depending on the outcome of that assessment the Bill would provide for a three year experiment to take place so that the effect of the change could be assessed in practice.

What do readers think?

Tottington events

Question your M.P.

Question your M.P.

On Saturday before Remembrance Sunday I held a Question your MP event in the Parish Hall in Tottington. Unfortunately, it clashed with Bury playing at home but it was very difficult for me to come up with a free Saturday afternoon. The idea is that anyone who registers can turn up and let me have their opinion, ask me any questions or just generally have a moan! The Tottington event seemed to go down quite well even those who openly admitted they will never vote Conservative appreciated the fact that I am at least prepared to hold such open events and allow people their say.

On Thursday I attended the funeral of the late Jack Kenneford who was well known for his wide variety of interests in the local Community. He had died on 11th November and it was particularly poignant because I was only able to attend due to the fact that I was back in the Constituency earlier than normal due to me having accepted an invitation to be the guest speaker at Tottington High School’s Celebration of Excellence evening later that day where Jack was Chairman of Governors. Neville Kenyon stepped in to act as Chairman of the event.

The pupils demonstrated their musical talent and the prize winners had their achievement officially recognised.

Remembrance Day

I have attended three Remembrance Day services today. This morning I attended the Civic Service of Remembrance at Bury Parish Church where I laid a wreath at the town’s war memorial.

In the afternoon I attended the Tottington Parade and Service of Remembrance and again laid a wreath at the War memorial.

This evening I attended a special service of Evening Prayer, Remembrance and Roll Call at St. Anne’s which is an especially moving service when the names of those from the Parish who have lost their lives in conflict are individually read out and the bell is tolled for each one.

They gave their lives for our freedom. We must remember them.

Sustainable Livestock Bill

Yesterday, the House of Commons debated a Private Members Bill called the Sustainable livestock Bill. On the face of it the Bill appears quite unremarkable, upon consideration and detailed examination I believe it would not be an appropriate area to legislate on. The effect would be to introduce a whole new raft of rules and regulations which would make life more difficult for farmers in Bury, Tottington and Ramsbotttom and therefore I spoke against the Bill

Adullam Housing

On Friday after attending a meeting with the Chief Superintendent at Bury’s new police station. I attended a meeting at Adullam Homes Housing Association on Bolton Road in Bury. Adullam was set up in Birmingham in 1972 and is now a national organisation. Their mission is to provide ‘high quality accommodation, and housing related services, for those needing additional support in their lives.’

I met with a group of their clients and they had the opportunity to question me about any matters of concern to them . Their principal concerns were about the changes which are being made to the benefits system and I was able to explain what I know about the way the new system will work. As I explained to them it can not be right that in a Country that has one of the most comprehensive healthcare systems in the World, which is free at the point of delivery, we have two and a half million people on Incapacity Benefit who are apparently incapable of working. As a Society we can and must do better. Of course there are unfortunately individuals who because of physical and/or mental incapacity are unable to work but I do not accept that this group numbers 2.5million. Further it is perfectly reasonable to do what the Government is proposing to arrange for each person claiming this benefit to attend for a new independent assessment to see whether they are capable of doing any work.

Later on Friday I held a surgery at my constituency office. On saturday after taking CeeCee to his outdoor training class I had a meeting about the W.O. Street Charitable Trust where we are still trying to persuade Barclays to retire as Trustees so that new Trustees can takeover and more money will be available for local charities.

In the afternoon I attended Gigg Lane where the Shakers triumphed in their first round FA Cup tie against Exeter despite Exeter being in the league above.

On Sunday after attending church at St.Anne’s I attended the Craft Show organised by the Bury Society for Blind and Partially Sighted Persons at Ramsbottom Civic Hall. I then visited the Autumn Show of the Ramsbottom Horticultural Society at Ramsbottom Cricket Club.

MAG and CRC

A busy day dealing with a number of different issues. This morning I attended a briefing meeting with the senior management team from Manchester Airport Group (MAG) where we discussed a number of issues but principally matters arising out of the latest security alert at East Midlands airport last weekend. For those who may not be away East Midlands airport is part of the same group as Manchester airport.

I was in the Chamber for Prime Minister’s Questions and then during my lunch period I attended the Communion Service at St. Mary’s Undercroft in Westminster Hall. My next engagement was to meet a constituent in connection with the work of the Cancer Research Campaign (CRC). THe main thrust of the message was that if we are to improve cancer survival rates we must improve on early diagnosis.