CANCER is a terrible illness which affects thousands of people in the UK every day and I am a big believer that research is key to finding a cure.

That being the case I regularly attend events in Parliament where I speak to experts about the fight against cancer and the Government support required if we are to help save lives.

More than 330,000 people a year in the UK are diagnosed with cancer. But thanks to research, survival rates have doubled in the last 40 years which means 45 per cent of those diagnosed will survive the disease for more than 10 years.

I recently attended an event run by Cancer Research UK aimed at highlighting the power of research by pointing out that each week it saves more than five times as many lives as there are seats in the chamber of the House of Commons.

When put into such stark context it shows how imperative it is for money to be directed into research which could help save even more lives.

Last week I met with the team behind Home-Start Fylde to offer my support as they look to secure funding to continue their important work.

The charity helps families with young children deal with any issues they might have and supports parents as they learn to cope by helping improve their confidence and allowing them to build better lives for their children.

I am honoured to be patron of Home-Start Fylde and whenever I have spoken to someone who has benefitted from their involvement, they always stress the importance of getting that support and it is vitally important it remains in place in Fylde. I will continue to do all I can to help support their crucial work.

This Easter long-weekend saw Fylde bathed in sunshine as thousands of people were out and about in some of our visitor hotspots.

St Annes was packed with people enjoying a walk down the Promenade, sitting on the beach or playing in the amusement arcades.

I know the streets of Lytham were also packed and that spaces on the seats and benches around the Piazza were at a premium.

I myself took the opportunity to spend some quality time with my mother and I hope the readers of this column likewise managed to have a fun and restful break.

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