Worcester MP Robin Walker writes for the Observer
AS I look forward to the new session of Parliament and Queen’s Speech in October, I am determined to keep promises on more issues than Brexit alone.
I attended a meeting of Worcestershire MPs with Health Secretary Matt Hancock and took the opportunity to press the case for a medical school and I am looking forward to celebrating the work of the incredible children’s cancer team at the hospital at their fund-raising ball this weekend.
It was great to attend the Festival of Business showing a huge variety of businesses are alive, thriving and networking in Worcestershire. I was pleased to see recent reports from the Worcester BID showing Worcester is bucking the national footfall trend for yet another year and performing stronger than last year. New investment in the form of
Worcester being shortlisted for both the future high streets fund and the stronger towns fund could lead to up to £45million in support for business and regeneration across the city.
Having joined a cross party delegation to discuss the worrying human rights situation in Kashmir with foreign office minister Lord Ahmad last week, I hosted a community meeting at Unity House last Friday along with the Mayor of Worcester, to hear the concerns of Kashmiri constituents about the situation affecting friends and families there.
Whilst I have raised the general concerns about human rights many times, it was clear from my discussions with the minister that taking up the individual cases of families and the links to the people living in the UK can be one of the most powerful tools at the UK’s disposal in making a difference.
I was delighted recently to join local veterans and serving personnel to celebrate the fourth birthday of the Worcester Armed Forces and Veterans Breakfast Club – a brilliant organisation which provides a wonderful social network for our local veterans and those still serving. It was good to be able to update them on the extra investment in defence from the spending review and the new office for veterans affairs being set up to oversee the military covenant.
I was also very proud to be able to open the North Worcester Primary Academy, the first new Primary School to be built in the city in many years. It’s been a great example of local schools coming together and delivering a new free school in the north of the city in a collaborative way where everyone has supported it.
It was useful to meet with the county to discuss the need for more school places across Worcester and in particular the need for more specialist provision in county. I have also continued to visit schools in Worcester to discuss the positive steps the government is taking to address climate change and make progress on environmental issues that I know are so dear to the hearts of many local students.
In this context it was exciting to see the U.K. being announced as the destination for the next global summit on tackling climate change. It was a pleasure to discuss these matters and many more with the very polite and well turned our pupils of St Joseph’s Roman Catholic Primary in Warndon.