Read My Latest Newsletter
I would like to take this opportunity to update you on what my team and I have been doing for you across Wealden and in Westminster over the last few weeks.
I hope you and your family are keeping well and safe, as we are making our way through the second national lockdown.
Due to the heavy rainfall over the weekend, I am aware that several areas across Wealden are experiencing serious flooding. If you are affected, please get in touch with the Wealden District Council or Highways England as soon as possible.
I am holding daily virtual surgeries, including at the weekends, throughout the lockdown month to help with urgent cases. If you would like to make an appointment, please visit my website, fill in the appointment form (available HERE) and return it to my email.
If you need my assistance but do not require a surgery appointment, please email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org and I will endeavour to respond as soon as I can.
Here is a quick update on my work in Wealden and in Westminster over the past few weeks.
I share your concerns about the devastating impact of lockdowns on businesses and families in Wealden, and I have stressed in Parliament that I would have preferred the Tier system to continue (watch my speech HERE).
I am keen to do all we can to reduce Covid fatalities and I want to ensure that decisions on restrictions also take into account unintended consequences on the health and wellbeing of Wealden residents (read my previous statement HERE and watch my speech HERE).
You may have read in the papers that I have joined my colleagues in establishing the new Covid Recovery Group (CRG), to ensure that we find a viable strategy for living with the virus. Read more HERE and HERE.
Our care homes and their staff are doing a fantastic job, but we they have shared with me their concerns about PPE and testing, which I have raised in Parliament (watch HERE).
I am in daily contact with local businesses, many of which are Members of our local Chambers of Commerce. I continue to make representations to the Government on their behalf and I also had the opportunity to raise it with Ministers in the Chamber (watch HERE).
My website is updated daily with the latest Government guidance. For coronavirus advice, please visit: www.nusghani.org.uk/coronavirus-advice.
🌈Wealden Hero Awards🌈
I had pleasure of meeting so many extraordinary individuals and businesses this summer, who have gone above and beyond to help others throughout the pandemic. I have been truly heartened to see so many acts of kindness throughout this unprecedented time and I cannot thank all these wonderful volunteers enough for supporting the community. All stories of our Wealden Heroes are available HERE.
🐟 Eridge stream habitat improvement project is complete🐟
Fantastic news for Crowborough&District Angling Association and Dorset Arms Angling Club! I am delighted that after securing £20,000 of funding, the habitat improvement project on Eridge Stream has been completed. Tonnes of High Weald iron stone gravel were introduced to the stream to form four fish spawning sites and a valuable refuge habitat for fish, allowing the fish population in the stream to grow. I look forward to visiting the site to see the improvement work when the Covid restrictions ease. Read more HERE.
♻️Forest Row Recycling Project♻️
I will be holding a meeting with the leader of the East Sussex County Council this week to discuss the reopening of Household Waste Recycling Centre in Forest Row. The Council has closed the site in 2018 and as a result, fly-tipping has increased in the area. I am determined to help the community to get the service reinstated and enhance the re-use and recycling capacity of the village.
📮Ridgewood Post Office reopening📮
Last month, I had the pleasure to visit Ridgewood Post Office to meet its new owners. I am aware that many of our local branches have been forced to take steps to reduce their hours and I am pleased that usual services have now begun to be restored throughout the constituency. I have previously fought for the Hailsham, Groombridge and Mayfield branches to remain open and I will continue to campaign for Wealden services to continue operating. Read more HERE.
Funding secured for Wealden
Fantastic news! I am pleased that many Wealden businesses have been awarded Government funding to help them get back on their feet and protect our local jobs. However, there is more to be done to support Wealden through the pandemic and I will continue to campaign for more funding for the constituency.
As part of the Government’s Cultural Recovery Fund for Heritage, a grant has been awarded to Farleys House & Gallery, Bluebell Railway, Hailsham Pavilion Cinema and Sussex Archaeological Society, which runs Michelham Priory.
🎭Live Events Sector
Following my letter to the Government in support of Wealden’s live events sector (available HERE), I am delighted that a grant has been awarded to So Sussex and Sussex Events Limited, the creators of Elderflower Fields Family Festival and “We Are Not a Festival”, both located at the Pippingford Park Estate.
⚽Wealden football clubs
I have joined with likeminded MPs to call for an urgent return of non-league football club fans to the stadiums. I am pleased that the Premier League has awarded a total of £10,000 between Crowborough Athletic FC, Hailsham Town FC and AFC Uckfield Town. This funding will help these clubs cover the costs of adjustments that need to be made to ensure safe return of players and supporters to the stadiums.
🌳Supporting Outdoor Education Sector🌳
I am proud that Wealden is home to many outdoor activity centres which offer educational support for Wealden’s children. These business, jobs and support for school children is now under threat.
I have raised the issue in Parliament and written to the Secretary of State for Education and the Treasury, urging the Government to reconsider its position on advising against residential trips to outdoor education centres for children. Read more HERE.
🎉🌳Result for Bowles Rocks Outdoor Education Centre🌳🎉
I am delighted that based on my representations to the Government on behalf of the outdoor education sector, Bowles Rocks have been awarded funding as part of the £200 million Coronavirus Community Support Fund to small charities. 16 charities in Wealden, including Bowles Rocks, Rotherfield St Martin, Hailsham Festival of Arts & Culture, MAYFACS and many others, have so far received £237,956 in total. Read more HERE.
🎉The English Soap Company wins Director of the Year Award🎉
I am pleased that Wealden’s fantastic family business, the English Soap Company, are the winners of the Family Business category of Institute of Directors London & South Director of The Year Awards. Their beautiful products make a perfect gift this Christmas! Click HERE to shop.
🇬🇧 In Parliament 🇬🇧
👆🏽UK business supply chain links to slave labour👆🏽
I am currently leading a parliamentary select committee inquiry which explores the extent to which British business are exploiting the forced labour of Uighurs in slave camps Xinjiang. UK must not become a place to hide for companies complicit in human rights abuses. British consumers deserve better.
At a recent hearing, I asked firms such as Boohoo, H&M and TikTok about their suspected links to abuses in Xinjiang. After being probed whether TikTok censored content or shared data with the Chinese Communist Party, TikTok confirmed they would submit to an algorithmic censorship review to resolve concerns over data sharing and censorship (watch HERE). For more information and media coverage, please click HERE.
Watch me declaring ‘Order, Order’ at my first outing in Westminster Hall debate on the important issue of infrastructure funding for rural constituencies HERE.
Next, I will be chairing the Eleventh Delegated Legislation Committee and considering the supplementary protection certificates for some patented medicines and agrochemicals sold in the UK.
🔎Written Parliamentary Questions🔍
Covid restrictions also apply to the House of Commons Chamber. I do apply daily to get in and directly raise Wealden issues with Ministers, and often I’m on the floor of the House 4 days a week. To ensure Wealden businesses, services and individuals continue to have their concerns represented, I am also corresponding with Ministers directly. Read my written contributions HERE.
Take care and stay safe.