Monday, 12 September 2016

Visit to record-breaking Woodlands School

With Woodlands School pupils
It was great to visit Woodlands School in Basildon and see first-hand how the school is developing.

I was pleased to find that Woodlands is going from strength-to-strength under the leadership of its Headteacher, Mr Simon Cox, and that it has seen a fantastic turn-around.

The school achieved record exam results in 2016, with 5 A*- C GCSE including English and Maths at 58%, representing a 10% increase on results from the year before.

The teachers and students that I met on my visit were all very impressive and I look forward to hearing more about the school's progress in the future.

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

A great community day for Basildon

It was great to go to the Love Your Borough event that took place in Basildon at the weekend. The event, organised by Basildon Council, celebrated the local community and brought together people from across our area, with activities that ranged from Brazilian capoeira to a spin bike challenge.

There was such a positive atmosphere throughout the day and it showed how much we have to be proud of in our local area.

In Basildon with Cllr Kevin Blake, Deputy Leader of Basildon Council
local resident Jeff Henry and Chairman of Basildon Rotary Club Danny Lovey

Catching up with Basildon Street Pastors at the Love Your Borough event

Later in the day I attended a civic reception for double Olympic champion Max Whitlock and the South Essex Gymnastics Club where he trains. It was fantastic to welcome Max back to Basildon after his amazing Olympic Games in Rio this summer.

We knew that we had an extraordinary gymnast in Max and it was brilliant to see him show that to a global audience through his historic double gymnastics gold for Team GB.

The whole team at South Essex Gymnastics Club deserve the highest praise, including Max's coach Scott Hann and the gym's leader Roy Short.

Max Whitlock speaking at the civic reception in Basildon

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Visiting Basildon Hospital Radio's BHR1287 studio

I enjoyed my latest visit to Basildon Hospital Radio's BHR1287 studio for its Sunday request programme.
With volunteers and other guests at BHR1287
The radio station has a fantastic team of volunteers, who provide entertainment, news, and information to patients 24/7. This great community service is driven by the energy and commitment of those who help to run it, and I am always impressed by the level of enthusiasm I see on my visits to the station.

A big thank you to all the volunteers at BHR1287 for producing quality content for patients at the hospital.

In the BHR1287 studio for the request programme

Monday, 25 July 2016

Opening the new pitch at Bowers & Pitsea FC

It was a pleasure to be invited to officially open the new pitch at Bowers & Pitsea Football Club following its recent development.

Thank you to everyone at the club for the warm welcome and best of luck for next season!

Officially opening Bower & Pitsea FC's new pitch.
Photo by NashPhotography

Thursday, 7 July 2016

Supporting Tesco Food Collection in Pitsea

I was pleased to take part in the Tesco Food Collection in Pitsea, which provides support for the local food bank.

Well done to the brilliant and energetic team as well as all those who donated, making a real difference to people's lives in the community.

Helping the brilliant Tesco Food Collection team in Pitsea

Saturday, 2 July 2016

Celebrating Armed Forces Day in Orsett

It was great to celebrate Armed Forces Day at Orsett Showground, where many local people turned out to show their appreciation for our fantastic servicemen and women.

Thank you to Dan Rogers and all who helped to make the event a success and, as ever, thank you to members of the armed forces community who we came together to support.

Speaking at Orsett Showground's Armed Forces Day event

Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Prime Minister's Questions

During Prime Minister's Question time I asked David Cameron to join me in thanking all those involved in organising the Forget Never - The Somme project in Basildon.

Speaking at Prime Minister's Question time

Forget Never commemorates the 100 year anniversary of the Battle of the Somme in World War One, which was the bloodiest day in British military history with an enormous amount of casualties.

It is important that young people have the chance to learn the lessons of the past and that we all remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice.

You can watch a recording of my question and the Prime Minister's response here.