The return of parliament in September was filled with more excitement than usual for those working at the coal-face of the Westminster bubble.
Would a new Labour Party leader herald a new look Labour Party? What guise would Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition take in the months and years ahead.
Jeremy Corbyn, the new Labour leader, had indicated that he wanted to make Prime Minister’s Question Time less theatrical and more accessible to the general public.
A good start, something that I, along with many other MPs from across the House have long called for... we had high expectations.
The result was a statement about the importance of serious conversation and listening to people – followed by a radio phone-in style list of questions for the PM.
For me not pursuing any of them sufficiently to properly hold the government to account.
It was certainly novel – I will be interested to see if this approach stands the test of time in the PMQs arena.
It was actually the question posed by Northern Irish MP, Nigel Dodds that brought the new world order cleanly into focus.
He referred to the three MPs murdered by the IRA – the graves up and down our home nations which house the innocent victims of the IRA and then to the new Shadow Chancellor, John McDonnell MP who believes the terrorists that delivered this murder should be honoured.
Jeremy Corbyn’s colleagues on the Labour benches had every right to look thoughtful, disheartened, ashamed even at the prospect of a future under this new leadership team.
Just one day prior to PMQs, Mr Corbyn’s decision not to sing the national anthem at the Battle of Britain memorial service sparked national debate.
Newly-elected Labour MP and now shadow minister for energy and climate change, Clive Lewis has backed his leader’s stance, stating that the national anthem is a song about a ‘non-existent deity, saving an unelected head of state’.
In Gosport and our surrounding area where we have such a proud history of defending our country, whose sons and daughters have kept these shores safe for generations, I’d like to think the national anthem is much more than that.
For us it’s about pride in our communities and our country, and an understanding of our heritage.
Sentiments that are so distinctly lacking in the upper ranks of the new Labour leadership who seem to despise our country and all that it represents.