THIS week I was disappointed by the announcement 286 managerial roles could be at risk across BAE Systems’ Military Air & Information (MAI) arm in Warton and Salmesbury.

Whenever potential job losses are announced there is a tendency to talk in terms of the numbers at risk, but it should always be remembered that behind every job is a person with a family.

That is why I have made it clear to the management at BAE Systems that they should be doing all they can to mitigate against compulsory redundancies as far as possible and to ensure they are providing the necessary support for staff who may be facing losing their jobs.

As Fylde’s biggest employer, the success of BAE Systems is obviously extremely important for the area and since coming to Parliament I have done all I can to ensure the company has the required Government support for Typhoon and Hawk export negotiations around the world.

I also successfully lobbied the Government for the Fylde site to be given Enterprise Zone status which should help ensure careers are available in highly-skilled engineering and manufacturing industries in Warton for many years to come.

I have been patron of Homestart Fylde for a number of years now and am very proud of my association with the charity.

This week I attended its Annual General Meeting and was impressed by talks from volunteers outlining the tremendous work done to assist families in the area who are in need of support.

However, without the necessary funding organisations such as Homestart could not go on so I always encourage people to give what they can to help ensure this vital service can continue.

At the meeting, it was announced that Homestart was now moving into Blackpool to help families in the famous seaside resort and I wish the management every success as they expand the service they provide.

On Saturday I attended the Pat Mancini Ball at the Winter Gardens in Blackpool on behalf of the Queendeans charity.

As patron of the Queendeans I am always happy to support its fundraising efforts and everyone at the ball appeared to have an excellent night while raising plenty of money for this worthy cause.

The Queendeans has a long history of supporting good causes across the Fylde coast and I hope it continues to do so for many years to come.


PICTURE: Mark Menzies MP at Homestart Fylde AGM

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