From Michelle Donelan <[email protected]>
Subject My Latest Update & His Majesty's Coronation
Date May 4, 2023 6:49 PM
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Including events to mark the Coronation in our community and further investment for our area |

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Welcome to my latest newsletter, I hope you are well. As ever, if there is anything I can do to help, or if you would like to speak to me at one of my upcoming surgeries, please do let me know.

With the Coronation of His Majesty the King taking place this weekend, there are a huge number of events taking place in our community. I have listed as many events as possible below, but please do let me know if you are planning an event and I can add it to the list on my Facebook page.

A huge thank you to all of those who have helped plan Coronation events for our community and those who are volunteering over the long weekend to make them possible.

You may have seen that I have started a short maternity leave from my Secretary of State role at the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology, but I am not taking a break as your MP. I remain here to help during this time and will be active in our community so please do get in touch if there is anything I may be able to assist with and I would be more than happy to help.

You can see updates on my recent work below, and finally I hope that you and your family are able to make the most of the long weekend and enjoy the extra Bank Holiday on Monday!

** Coronation Art Competition

๐Ÿ‘‘ ๐ŸŽจ Calling all local artists and creative minds! I am running a competition to celebrate the upcoming coronation of our King. Create a piece of artwork that captures the essence of this historic event for a chance to have your work displayed at Number 10 Downing Street!

๐Ÿ‘จโ€๐Ÿ‘ฉโ€๐Ÿ‘งโ€๐Ÿ‘ฆ There are three categories, one for children up to 13, one for 13-18 year olds and one for adults aged 18 and over.

๐Ÿ–ผ๏ธ To enter, simply create a piece of art inspired by the coronation, whether it's a painting, drawing, photograph, etc.

โœ‰๏ธ ๐Ÿ—“๏ธ Post or drop off your artwork to my shop in Chippenham by May 31st with your age, name and contact details - you must live within the Chippenham constituency to qualify.

๐Ÿ† The winners from each category will receive certificates and their creative art will be displayed on a table at Number 10 Downing Street for a week! This is a unique opportunity to showcase your talent and celebrate this historic moment.

** Coronation Events In Our Community

๐Ÿ‘‘ Saturday 6 May ๐Ÿ‘‘

Picnic in the Park, King George V Playing Field, Melksham - 10.30am onwards
Chippenham's Coronation Celebration, John Coles Park - all day
Coronation Screening, The Fox and Hounds, Broughton Gifford - 10am onwards
Ceremony Screening, Victory Field, Bradford on Avon - 10am onwards
Corsham Creative Market, Springfield Community Campus - 11am to 3pm
Coronation Extravaganza, Seend Community Centre - 5pm onwards
Coronation Buffet, Market Tavern, Melksham - all day
Flower Festival, St George's Church, Semington - all day

๐Ÿ‘‘ Sunday 7 May ๐Ÿ‘‘

Coronation 'Bring and Share' Tea, Monkton Farleigh Village Hall, 3-5pm
Big Picnic Lunch, Melksham Assembly Hall - 12pm onwards
Family Fun Picnic, Barton Farmyard, Bradford on Avon - 12-3pm
Lacock Coronation Big Lunch, Playing Field - 2pm to 5pm
Celebration Service at St George's, Semington - 9.15am
Concert Screening, Victory Field, Bradford on Avon - evening
Broadmead Big Lunch, Brook Drive, Corsham - 12pm to 2pm
Village Celebrations, High Street, Semington - 11am onwards
Coronation Party, Foresters Arms, Melksham - all day

๐Ÿ‘‘ Monday 8 May ๐Ÿ‘‘

Coronation Community Picnic, green nr The Mead School, Hilperton - 10am to 12pm
Community Litter Pick, Springfield Campus, Corsham - 10am to 12pm
Big Help Out, Westbury Garden, Bradford on Avon - 10am to 3pm
Help at the Community Garden, Pound Arts Corsham - 2pm to 5pm
Volunteer Day, Semington - 10.30am to 1pm

๐Ÿ‘‘ Anytime ๐Ÿ‘‘

Coronation Trail around Corsham Town Centre - until 10 May, pick up an entry form from the Town Hall or TIC

** Manifesto Pledge Delivered

โœ… Manifesto commitment delivered: The manifesto I stood on to become your MP at the last election included a commitment to recruit 20,000 police offers across the country - a promise we have now delivered on.

๐Ÿ‘ฎโ€โ™€๏ธ The latest data shows this includes 1๏ธโƒฃ6๏ธโƒฃ4๏ธโƒฃ extra police officers recruited locally in Wiltshire, on top of normal recruitment to replace officers who leave or retire.

๐Ÿ“ˆ After a big push from the Police and Crime Commissioner Philip Wilkinson, we now have 1๏ธโƒฃ1๏ธโƒฃ6๏ธโƒฃ4๏ธโƒฃ officers in the force in Wiltshire to help keep our towns and villages safe - higher than the target set by the Government.

๐Ÿ“ฃ Over the last six months I have run a series of community crime forums covering the whole constituency for you to raise your concerns about crime in our area directly with the PCC and our local officers.

๐Ÿ’ฌ The good news is that we have seen a reduction overall in most crimes in the area, but I know that there are issues folks are still concerned about, so please do get in touch if there is anything you would like to raise with me and I will feed this back to the PCC and the new Chief Constable for Wiltshire Police when we next meet in the coming weeks.

** Access To Cash In Melksham Campaign

๐Ÿ“ฃ As part of my Melksham Access to Cash campaign, I have been conducting surveys across the town. Are you a business owner or resident in Melksham? Your input is essential to help, and Iโ€™m working with organisations to find the best solutions for our town. ๐Ÿ’ฐ๐Ÿ’ณ

We are now making real progress, with Cash Access UK conducting surveys to determine what services you need. ๐Ÿ“‹

Please take a few minutes to complete the relevant survey - there's one for the community and one for small to medium-sized businesses. Your feedback will help provide a facility that meets your needs and ensure businesses have the ability to accept and deposit cash. ๐Ÿค

General survey for the community ([link removed])

Small & Medium Business Survey ([link removed])

Together, we can make a difference and create a better banking experience for everyone in Melksham.

** Have Your Say On Chippenham Town Centre

We are launching Chippenham Town Centre Partnership Boardโ€™s Plan FOR YOU TO HAVE YOUR SAY ๐Ÿšจ๐Ÿ“ƒ

โœ… I set up and Chair Chippenham Town Partnership board as I wanted to bring all the key stakeholders in the town round the table to actually commit to investing in our town and working together to make it happen.

โœ… The Plan helps bring together some existing plans and new ones into a single document focused on getting your views and to ensure we can then work up these plans to bid in for funding and secure private investment too.

๐Ÿ—ฃ๏ธ It is really important that you have a voice in shaping the future of our town so please do fill in our questionnaire to help set the vision for the future of Chippenham.

All of the information can be found here ([link removed]) .

You can also come along to one of our public events or pick up a copy of the consultation at my shop on New Road.

** Millions Of Pounds Of Rural Funding Secured

๐Ÿšœ ๐ŸŒณ Fantastic news that Wiltshire has received over ยฃ2.6 million from the Government's Rural Prosperity Fund, to help support the county and its economy to thrive.

This delivers on our commitment to match funding from the previous scheme in place under the EU, taking advantage of Brexit by further tailoring investment to each community and its needs. The funding will be used for Wiltshire Council to ๐Ÿ‘‡

๐ŸŒพ Fund activities that addresses challenges rural communities face
๐Ÿ“ˆ Provide grants for rural communities and businesses
๐ŸŒพ Support local farm diversification
๐Ÿ›๏ธ Fund projects to boost rural tourism
๐Ÿƒ Improve infrastructure in rural areas like electric charging points

If you are a rural business or charity and would like me to come and visit, or if I can help in any way, please do let me know.

** Pension Boost For Over 20,000 Constituents

๐Ÿ”’ From last month, more than 20,000 pensioners in our constituency will receive a 10.1% increase to their state pension - the largest cash increase ever. This record increase is a result of our commitment to the Triple Lock, coming on top of other support like Pension Credit, Winter Fuel Payments, Pensioner Cost of Living Payments and free TV licences for the over 75s.

โœ… Maintaining the Triple Lock is something I have always consistently supported and pushed for directly since becoming your MP, as I believe it is absolutely vital we support those in later life and make sure everyone receives all of the support they are entitled to.

๐Ÿ“ฃ If you any questions about what support you may be eligible for, please do not hesitate to contact me.

** Investment In Our Schools

I have been pushing and campaigning across Government to get extra support for the schools in our area and I can update you that we will be getting an extra ยฃ2.4 million cash boost ๐Ÿš€ for our primary and secondary schools. ๐Ÿซ

This is part of a ยฃ2 billion injection of new funding for schools to top up budgets to help headteachers manage higher costs like energy bills and teacher pay.

This support will allow teachers to have the resources which they need and this will allow teachers to get on and do what they do best - which is delivering a first class education to our children.

** Boosting Our Local Train Services

๐Ÿš‚ Great to join Danny Kruger MP at a stakeholder event at the Corn Exchange in Devizes to discuss Wiltshire railways and connectivity. Danny and the team have been working on a campaign to open a train station in Devizes, so I raised my ongoing campaign to reopen Corsham Station and the progress we have made there so far.

๐Ÿ“ˆ The Department for Transport completed a feasibility study for opening a station in Devizes and found that they believe the best option for making this happen would be as part of a wider upgrade program for investing in Wiltshire's railways, so this is an exciting opportunity to work together on my campaign for Corsham Station.

โฉ The Devizes team's next steps will be to work with the industry, Wiltshire Council and other key stakeholders to look at the best way of securing investment to improve rail services and infrastructure across Wiltshire.

๐Ÿš€ Meanwhile, we submitted a Strategic Outline Business Case for Corsham Station to the Department for Transport at the end of last year with myself as the lead sponsor - a big step forward so do look out for updates on that!

** A Day In The Life!

๐Ÿ“ฐ I recently had a day in the life as your MP captured by the Melksham Independent News. I strive to be accessible to everyone and proactively find ways to reach out to those who wouldn't usually contact their MP regardless of their political views, so this was a great way of sharing some of the work I do for our area in a typical day.

The town of Melksham is lucky to have the Melksham Independent News - it is refreshing to have a truly independent and locally focused paper that provides informative and engaging reporting about local people, events and issues. I find the paper to be an invaluable source of information each fortnight!

You can read the article on the Melksham Independent News' website here ([link removed]) .

** Short Story Competition Winners

๐ŸŒŸ๐Ÿ“š I am delighted to announce the Winners of my Short Story Competiton 2023 - a huge thank you to the hundreds of local children who entered from across the constituency. I was very impressed by the huge range of amazing stories submitted - we certainly have some young budding writers in our constituency! ๐ŸŒˆ

๐Ÿ…The winner of the written category isโ€ฆ. ๐Ÿฅ Kaylah Mead from Chippenham! I was so impressed by Kaylahโ€™s amazing story about heroic nine year old Henry, who helps King Alfred protect Chippenham from Vikings back in 878 - such a creative idea!

๐Ÿ…The winner of the creative category isโ€ฆ ๐Ÿฅ Seraphina Garcia from Lower Westwood! I was very impressed by Seraphinaโ€™s carefully drawn cartoon all about a young girl who has a surprising underground adventure!

There were so many amazing stories it was very hard indeed to choose the winners! The level of writing and imagination was incredible.

The competition was all about encouraging local children to read, write and get creative for World Book Day over the school holidays. โœ๏ธ๐ŸŽจ

Thank you to The Corsham Bookshop and Edwards Stationery in Melksham who very kindly donated prizes, and I have bought some extra prizes from Parliament. I look forward to meeting the winners soon to congratulate them in person and present them with their prizes and certificates!

** Other News In Brief

๐Ÿšง We have secured nearly ยฃ7 million from the Safer Roads Fund for improving the A3102 into Melksham. This Government investment will help Wiltshire Council to implement safety improvements like re-designing junctions and improving signage and road markings, and help to reduce congestion and emissions.

โœ… I have worked with my fellow Wiltshire MPโ€™s to help secure over ยฃ5.4 million of further Government funding to extend the Household Support Fund, supporting vulnerable families in our community with the cost of living.

๐Ÿ’ Met with Alzheimer's Supportโ€™s Wiltshire team who work across the county and have their HQ in Devizes. We talked about the challenges and opportunities that the charity faces, and ways that we can work together to support residents with dementia and their families.

โญ๏ธ Delighted to share that The National Lottery Community Fund has awarded over ยฃ269,997 to community projects in the Chippenham constituency, including ยฃ250,000 to support local youth provision through 4Youth Melksham's Engaging Wiltshireโ€™s young people initiative. This funding will help youth clubs, counselling services and detached youth work.

๐Ÿ‘ฉโ€๐Ÿซ Could you spare a couple of hours a month to volunteer as a school Governor for Hilperton C of E Primary School? The school have vacancies for both Governors and Parent Governors - a great way to develop new skills and make a difference to our local childrenโ€™s education. Please do get in touch with the school if you would be interested - [email protected].

๐Ÿ’™ A huge congratulations to the 300 gents who took part in an 8-mile walk from Winsley to Bath for this yearโ€™s Menโ€™s Walk and raised an incredible ยฃ50,000 for Dorothy House! A fantastic effort - this fundraising will help to support the vital hospice and care work which Dorothy House provides. If you are interested in taking part next year do keep an eye on their Facebook page and website!

๐Ÿ‰ Big congrats to Melksham Rugby Minis & Juniors under-10s for their once-in-a-lifetime experience playing at Twickenham Stadium! The team had a blast competing against other clubs, and then watching Bath Rugby win against Harlequins. Such an unforgettable experience, and the perfect example of the power of grassroots rugby!

Thank you for taking the time to read my latest newsletter, if there is anything I may be able to help with or if you would like to speak to me at my next surgery, please do not hesitate to let me know.

Best wishes,

Michelle Donelan
Member of Parliament for Chippenham Constituency
Email: [email protected] (mailto:[email protected])
Telephone: 01249 704465
Write: Michelle Donelan MP, 61 New Road, Chippenham, SN15 1ES.

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