March Boxing Club continues to be a big hit

Neale Wade Boxing 1

A year on, and the after school club run by March Amateur Boxing Club at Neale-Wade Academy continues to be roaring success. Back in September 2014, March Boxing Club approached me to discuss how we could better support the club and promote the fitness benefits of boxing training to a wider audience. The result of …

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Wisbech Cricket and Hockey Club: An Update

ECB 2

Following on from my visit to Wisbech Cricket and Hockey Club to discuss plans for a new clubhouse and changing rooms, last week I met with Hannah Murphy, the national representative for the England Cricket Board (ECB), in the Houses of Parliament. Last Friday afternoon, Jenny Lambert, the ECB representative for the Cambridgeshire area had …

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Local Victory as Minister Orders a Road Sign for Thorney Toll Village Hall.

Roads Minister, Mike Penning MP, has confirmed today that a new sign will be installed on the A47 next to Thorney Toll Village Hall. I am delighted to report the good news, which arrived today in a letter from the Minister (included at the base of this post). The letter confirms that the Highways Agency have been instructed to install the …

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World renowned expert set to give talk to local students

Professor Adrian K Dixon, Professor of Radiology at the University of Cambridge, Honorary Consultant Radiologist at Addenbrooke’s Hospital and Master of Peterhouse, the oldest of the Cambridge University colleges, is set to visit the Fens to talk to a selection of pupils from local secondary schools about careers in medicine, applications to Oxford and Cambridge, …

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Minister says once is enough as CRB checks set to change

Costly duplicate Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) checks which cause delay and waste money for local firms are set to be streamlined, following assurances from the Minister for Children and Families.  Given the close proximity of the Norfolk and Lincolnshire borders around Wisbech, and the different regimes for Whittlesey residents working in Peterborough, businesses often find …

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A Question for Chatteris Residents

Could a new bus shuttle service between Chatteris and Manea help residents access local trains, and support the case for more trains stopping at Manea? Few trains currently stop at Manea station.  Chatteris has no rail station at all.  There is also no direct bus between Chatteris and Manea station – instead you have to go …

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Historic Fenland medieval stained glass window receives urgent funding

Staff at Wisbech Castle recently voiced their concern to me at the state of the 14th century medieval stained glass window, which needs urgent repair.  The window originates from the old Bishop of Ely’s Palace and is a crucial part of the heritage of the Castle. Some of the window panes need to be secured …

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First Friday with Steve Barclay

Some weeks feel like little progress is being made, and then a number of announcements come all at once.  Royal Mail confirmed the Chatteris sorting office will remain open for the foreseeable future, announcing a U-turn from their previous plans.  Thanks go to all the residents who signed the petition, Chatteris Town Council and the …

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Local Success over Chatteris Sorting Office

 Royal Mail have announced a U-turn on the planned closure of Chatteris Sorting Office following a local campaign to save it.  Postal staff, residents and I have been told that plans to close Chatteris sorting office have been suspended for the foreseeable future. This is great news for residents, especially the elderly and those who …

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Civil Servant Accountability to Parliament: Time for Change?

 Civil servants are accountable to their Minister but are not directly accountable to Parliament.   Ministers rightly account to Parliament for their policy. Only Accounting Officers, usually the Permanent Secretary, have direct accountability to Parliament for the value for money spent by departments. In the case of the Dept for Health for example, this makes just …

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