My Week in Westminster

We must pass the Withdrawal Act this week and start the process of leaving the European Union.

The various moves to delay, to alter, and to change the deal on the table are nothing more than moves to prevent Brexit.

MPs must now back the Prime Minister’s Brexit deal; it allows us to make our own trade deals, to control our own borders, and to forge a new relationship with our European neighbours.

Plans for a meaningful vote on Saturday were abandoned after MPS backed a move forcing the Prime Minister to ask Brussels for another Brexit delay. This is not about a delay, but about preventing Brexit.

We must respect the will of the people and this deal does exactly that – giving us a deal to leave the EU on good terms, which sets us up well for future negotiations on trade.

The Prime Minister has my full support and I look forward to Parliament being able to debate other significant matters, such as the increase in police numbers, the increase in funding for schools and teachers, and the Environment Bill.

We need to get through this initial stage of Brexit so that we can again concentrate on domestic Bills.

There is talk of the Government taking Northern Rail’s franchise off them for poor service.

The most important thing here is that we have a reliable quality service for passengers – whoever it is that supplies it is not the main concern.

I am also concerned to hear Northern reneging on its promise to get rid of Pacer trains this year – evidently they will now be around for longer as they gradually introduce their newer rolling stock.

If Northern cannot deliver a good enough service, the Government will take the necessary steps to ensure people get the standard of service they deserve.

We must ensure people have better public transport. It is better for the environment and allows people to improve their lives for all manner of reasons.

This week I joined other MPs to write a letter condemning Barclays for its proposal to stop customers banking through the Post Office.

The loss of bank branches is a huge blow for those people who choose not to, or are not able to use internet banking.

To now further reduce provision for their own customers is appalling.

I have already written to the firm regarding the closure of bank branches in Fylde; for them to withdraw further facilities, harming the Post Office in the process, is outrageous, and the matter is being raised with ministers.