My Week In Westminster

I chaired a cross-party meeting of North West MPs this week with North West aerospace businesses including BAE Systems, unions and the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership to discuss the future for the industry.

This is a sector which has been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic and the wider supply chain involves hundreds of thousands of jobs in the region.

I have attended the recent All Party Parliamentary group meetings on aerospace and wanted a more in-depth conversation with our key businesses.

We are now looking for a meeting with Secretary of State for Business Alok Sharma and all of the interested parties to make sure the needs of the aerospace industry following the pandemic are heard in Government.

I welcome the Government’s announcement of a £1.57 billion support package to help the arts. It has been a long time coming, following a great deal of talks between Government and the arts sector.

This funding will help venues and the wider sector across the country which have lost revenue and income through no fault of their own.

I visited our three main town centres this weekend following the relaxation of more coronavirus legislation, to see how businesses were coping.

I was pleased to see more of our economy reopen, as Fylde gets back to business.

Given the different size and shape of our restaurants, cafes and pubs, there was never going to be a ‘on size fits all’ solution; I am pleased to see so many business owners making so much effort to open with the safety of customers absolutely paramount.

It is important that these businesses are able to reopen once again. I have said many times before that an ailing economy brings about its own health issues; that said, we must all remain alert and maintain social distancing or risk forcing our local centres into another lockdown which would be catastrophic.

If we all stick to the regulations, continue washing our hands regularly and socially distance at all times, we can support our local businesses, stay safe, and see further relaxations of those regulations in the near future.