Focus Article November 2018

Here we are in November with, dare I say it Christmas just round the corner.  November is a special month each year when we remember all those who have sacrificed everything for our future and those who live with the scars of war, physical or physiological.  Of course this year marks 100 years since the end of the First World War, a war that devastated a generation.  While walking through Poulton recently, I noticed that large poppies are on the lamp posts in The Square and in surrounding roads. These were organised by local Royal British Legion volunteers and are a striking display. 

There is also a ‘therebutnotthere’ display in St Chad’s Church with silhouettes representing the fallen.  A charity called Remembered is responsible for the silhouettes and I know there are installations all over Lancashire and beyond.  While looking through the literature for the charity, I noticed its three main aims were to commemorate, educate and heal.  I really think these aims say it all: We must commemorate all who made the ultimate sacrifice and in doing so we will educate future generations and we must also heal today’s veterans who are suffering as a result of war and conflict.  Throughout the constituency schools, churches, local groups etc are marking the centenary with various events varying in size.  Having served in the Armed Forces myself, November is always a time for remembrance and quiet reflection.  WE WILL REMEMBER THEM!

With winter approaching, I would like to highlight the benefits of comparing energy tariffs and suppliers to ensure the best possible deal for customers.  This process can be daunting for some and confusing but, significant savings can be achieved.  With this in mind I would like to advise residents to visit the Ofgem website to access a list Ofgem-accredited price comparison sites and guidance. Simply follow this link:

I have recently written again to the Chief Executive of Lancashire County Council asking the Council to consider stepping in to meet the costs of running the 2C bus route between Knott-End and Poulton-le-Fylde on Sundays.  As many of you will know the Sunday service ceased to run at Easter as the operator, Catch 22 Bus, found the route commercially unviable to run.  The absence of the Sunday service has had a detrimental impact on many of my Over Wyre constituents and I believe the County should step in.  I have also highlighted that there is no out of hours medical service in Over Wyre and residents who need to see a GP on a Sunday are required to travel to Fleetwood or Freckleton.  Without private transport accessing these medical centres is extremely difficult.  I have also written to Blackpool Transport highlighting a request to look at the route of the 2C weekday service from Knott-End to Blackpool with a view that it is extended to create a bus stop close to the Over Wyre Medical Centre.  I would support the service stopping at the Medical Centre as this would benefit a great number of my constituents but it is also important that the current route is maintained.  Your views on this would be helpful and are always welcome.

I continue to meet residents at my advice surgeries to discuss a wide range of issues.  Please remember if you would like to attend one of my surgeries, the most effective way to contact me is by email, with a brief description of the issues you wish to raise and your contact details.  It is worth bearing in mind that I can often offer assistance without the need for a meeting.  As in previous months national issues continue to fill my mailbag, please remember I am here to represent you and your views are important to me so please keep them coming.

If I can be of any assistance to you please ring my Office at the House of Commons on 0207 219 5804 or my Constituency Office on 01995 672977, email me at or write to me at the House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA.