Thank You

Thanks to everyone who turned up for one of the six town hall meetings I hosted over the last fortnight. I enjoyed meeting so many new people – as well as some familiar faces – and appreciated you giving up a summer evening to come along and raise a range of local and national issues.

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Ambulance Chasing

Today, I visited the Ambulance depot near Chertsey, which services part of the constituency. Our frontline paramedics face a range of challenges – whether picking up the pieces after binge-drinking in town centers, or aiding an ageing population. The team at Chertsey have rolled out ‘Make Ready’, a system which has separate specialist teams cleaning, […]

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Local Democracy in the NHS

I blogged last week about the government’s plans to put GPs in charge of commissioning local healthcare services. When it comes to accident and emergency care, here in Elmbridge we rely on hospitals outside the constituency – such as Kingston and St Peters. That doesn’t mean our local community should have no say in how […]

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Lobby Group Politics

MPs get hundreds of emails and letters from constituents. I try to answer every one in reasonable time. But, MPs have finite time and resources, and I also want to prioritise those in the greatest need. It is a difficult balance. My approach is to ask those with a problem or issue they want me […]

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Why do MPs have such long holidays?

It is a common myth that MPs have ludicrously long holidays. Parliament went into recess last week. With the exception of two weeks in September, MPs will not return for two and a half months. But, Parliament not sitting is not the same thing as MPs not working. I can’t speak for others, but I’m […]

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End of Term Report Card

As I came through the general anaesthetic last week (from key-hole surgery to repair some hip cartilage), I gazed through bleary eyes at the TV screen for some news. The Sky News ticker read: “North Korea threatens to invade South Korea”. Next item: “Conservative MP criticises Coalition in Pub”. It was a typical illustration of […]

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Summer Fetes

Erika and I have been visiting local fairs and shows whilst the good weather holds. Today, we enjoyed lunch and the opening of the brilliant Claygate Flower Show (below, with President Susanne Tunnicliff and her husband Kenny) …. … before joining Mike Roycroft and his fantastic team at the Whiteley village Summer Fete (above). Both […]

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Funding for Princess Alice Hospice

I was delighted to hear this week that capital grant funding for Princess Alice Hospice has been confirmed despite the parlous state of the public finances. The hospice does incredible work for those with terminal illness – and their families – and Ministers have now confirmed to me that a £40k tranche of capital funding, […]

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