MY WEEK IN WESTMINSTER

THIS week I was delighted to be able to host a Parliamentary reception for staff from BAE systems.

As many people will know, the company is Fylde’s biggest employer with more than 6,000 people working at its site in Warton.

I’m extremely proud of the work that goes on there and often tell people I meet that the Eurofighter Typhoon and Hawk aircraft are built in Fylde.

I was delighted to be able to welcome the Prime Minister to Warton in March and show him some of the work which is going on, while introducing him to some of the UK’s finest apprentices.

So it was a pleasure to see a large number of Warton people down in Parliament where we had some interesting conversations on future developments within the business.

This week I also had the opportunity to meet a group of Royal Marines in the Palace of Westminster – in, it has to be said, much more pleasant conditions than where we last saw each other.

Having spent time in Arctic Circle with a number of the group as part of the Armed Forces Parliamentary Scheme, it was nice to be able to pay back the hospitality they had offered me by showing them around Parliament.

I am a big supporter of our armed forces and cannot commend them enough for what they do. As members of the Parliamentary scheme we get to see a small part of the work they carry out, often in extremely hazardous conditions, and it really brings home how difficult a job they do.

Later that day I attended the Citizen’s Advice Bureau Parliamentary reception in the Terrace Pavilion.

I regularly hold constituency surgeries at the bureau in Kirkham, as well dealing with staff over a number of casework issues, and I find they offer a great service and often provide invaluable support for constituents with a whole raft of problems.

In Fylde this week, I met with a group of people who are busy renovating Lytham railway station ahead of a busy tourism season.

It is great when a group of local residents identify an issue in their community and get on with doing something to rectify it.

We have a large number of fine examples of where this has taken place in Fylde and I am always impressed by how community-spirited local people are.

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