Last week’s Parliamentary recess meant I focused entirely on events in the constituency. A busy schedule gave me an opportunity to meet those working hard for the community locally, from raising money for veterans to raising standards in local family homes.
I enjoyed meeting Havant’s Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Families Association (SSAFA) at St Faith’s Church Hall and pledged my support for their outstanding work for veterans.
As a long-standing supporter of The Royal British Legion, and founder of its young professionals’ branch, I appreciate the selfless work done by our Armed Forces and veterans.
It’s vital that we support these brave personnel, at home as well as abroad, through charities such as the SSAFA and the Homes for Heroes Foundation – which I helped launch in Parliament earlier this year.
I am also supporting efforts to raise standards for local house-hunters and homeowners.
I visited the excellent new One Zero Eighty development, built by David Wilson Homes, in Bedhampton last week together with the National Housebuilding Council. NHBC inspect properties across the country driving up standards, and it was good to see them in action.
It was great to meet new homeowner Tracie Billingham, who is delighted with her new home. The development also includes homes for first time buyers and social tenants. With the help of government initiatives such as Help to Buy and the Lifetime ISA, everyone now has chance to get on the property ladder.
I also met local young apprentices who set high standards for themselves in their workmanship.
Lloyds Bank’s in Havant branch are aiming high too. Not just providing useful banking services but going the extra mile too when it comes to community contribution.
They’ve pledged £35,000 to the Southern Domestic Abuse Service – which I’ve also supported – and I enjoyed meeting local staff when I visited last week.
Last Friday saw the launch of the National Living Wage. Havant-based workers aged 25 or over, both full or part-time, will now see an increase in their pay packets.
Thanks to all residents who sent in nominations for my Small Business Awards 2016.
The response has been great, and we’ll announce the finalists and winners in the News over the coming weeks. Thanks to News readers for their continuing support.