Showcasing Havant on national stage

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Stretching from Hayling Island’s seafront to Leigh Park, and from Emsworth to Bedhampton and the Waterlooville border, the Havant constituency I’m proud to represent is large and diverse.

Our area is known locally for its communities full of hard-working residents, vibrant voluntary groups, and award-winning businesses.

As local MP, I help tell our local story on the national stage whenever and wherever I can. So I was delighted to secure national recognition for two businesses stories last week.

Chancellor George Osborne threw his support behind Emsworth-based engineering firm Innova Design.

I cited Innova in Parliament as an example of a local manufacturing business who have used government tax breaks to buy new machinery and grow. They’re a great local business with truly worldwide reach and reputation, having produced over 100 man-of-the-match trophies for Brazil’s 2014 World Cup.

Donning my wellies, I welcomed Cabinet minister and food secretary Liz Truss MP to Northney Farm on Hayling Island last Friday. Run by Tim Pike and his family, they make the organic Northney Ice Cream that is so popular across the region. The secretary of state enjoyed her tour of the dairy farm and a taste of Tim’s famous ice cream.

Regular News readers will know I’m a vice chairman of the Hampshire group of MPs in Parliament. I met the chief executive of Southern Health to tell them they must maintain the high standards we see in other aspects of local life.

Following an independent report from accountants Mazars which criticised Southern Health’s failure to prevent certain patients’ deaths, they need to move from apologising to taking action to improve.

Local residents and patients deserve nothing less when it comes to health services.

Our local schools are doing better than ever, and I enjoyed welcoming pupils from Glenwood School, Emsworth, to Parliament this week for a lively Q&A session.

I was also privileged to be presented with honorary membership of Havant Hockey Club – who have a track record of producing England internationals – during their home game last Saturday. They’re another local success story with national acclaim.

Don’t forget my jobs and apprenticeships fair at Warblington School is on Friday February 19, 10am-4pm.