From Chris Bishop MP <[email protected]>
Subject My first Bishop Bulletin of the year - happy new year!
Date January 25, 2024 8:14 PM
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I hope you've had a great summer.

Dear John,

As I sit and write this the sun is going down in Eastbourne - it's been another stunning day and I can hear kids at the beach enjoying the summer sun. What a great summer we've had so far - sadly politics for the year is now well underway so I have spent most of the week in the office as the government gears up for a big year.

A very happy new year to you and your loved ones. I hope you had a good break and managed to spend some quality time with friends and family. As we kick off 2024, I am excited about the opportunities and possibilities that lay ahead. It’s a brand-new year, we have a newly formed coalition government and I am keen to get stuck in in the Hutt!

After a very busy 2023, I did manage to take a few days off over summer and enjoy some much needed downtime with Jenna, Jeremy and Ladyhawke over the break. The wee boy is now well accustomed to all things we love about a Kiwi summer such as fish & chips on the beach, sandcastle creations, cricket spectating, afternoon naps, and the occasional ice cream from the Pavilion, to name just a few. Jenna and I also celebrated our fifth wedding anniversary last weekend - I couldn't quite believe it has been five years. Time sure has flown by.

Politics-wise, the National Party caucus gathered in Christchurch last week for our annual “retreat” which is a series of planning sessions for the year and a review of the year just gone. Parliament is back for the first week of the year next week and then it's off to Waitangi. A lot of the media and much of the commentariat have worked themselves into a lather about a fictitious new government "war on Maori", although much of the commentary simply isn't based on fact. Christopher Luxon gave a very good speech ([link removed]) yesterday at Ratana on this topic which I encourage you to read. The simple point is that we want all New Zealanders to succeed; we believe in honouring the Treaty and redressing past wrongs, and equal citizenship. Pretty simple really.

Melling: You might have seen a news story ([link removed]) last week in the Dom (or this week's Hutt News) about the funding problems affecting RiverLink and the new Melling Interchange. This is a critical project for the Hutt and one that I've fought hard for for many years. The previous Labour-led government initially cancelled the project, then dithered around it, and we in National were finally able to convince them to fund it. Unfortunately Labour didn't alllocate enough money and the project will have to cut costs. Rest assured though, the government is committed to Melling, as am I! Watch this space!

Have a great weekend. If I can help with anything, please reach out. I'll keep publishing these Bulletins every two weeks or so for the rest of the year, as I've done for 9 years now. Always keen on feedback on what you like seeing in the newsletters and what you don't - please flick me an email. (mailto:[email protected]?subject=Bullletin%20feedback)


P.S Did you see this video? An incredible catch ([link removed]) by ex-HIBS cricketer Troy Johnson in a Super Smash T20 game. One of the best, if not the best catches I've ever seen.

Can't beat...

Fish and chips on the beach in summer!
Hutt Park Run

First parkrun for the year a couple of weeks ago. Bye bye Christmas pudding!!!
British & Irish Lions Women's Tour Announcement

Announcing the first ever British & Irish Lions Womens Tour coming to New Zealand in 2027! It's so awesome to see women's rugby continuing to grow and this will be an amazing week. Hopefully I am Sports Minister then!
Wheel Blacks - Rugby Tournament at NZCIS in March

The qualifying tournament for Wheelchair Rugby at the Paris Paralympics kicks off in Upper Hutt in March at the amazing NZ Campus of Innovation and Sport and I’m hoping to be there cheering on our Wheel Blacks as they take on their rivals. I was invited to do the draw for the tournament last week - a first for me! - and it was great to chat to Gavin Rolton of the Wheel Blacks about the intense training programme he’s taking on. Good luck to the Wheel Blacks!
Wellington Cup

Mary Louise the winner in the NZCIS Wellington Cup on Saturday. Congrats to trainer Robbie Patterson and jockey Craig Grylls. A double success as Puntura came home first in the Thorndon Mile a bit earlier in the afternoon. Enjoyed helping to present the prizes.
Light Stroll(er) In The Bush

The weather around the bays in the Hutt has been stunning and Jeremy and I have been enjoying some bush walks!
National Party Caucus Retreat 2024
Nothing blue about this caucus, we're fired up and ready!
Hutt Citizenship Ceremony

Officially welcoming New Zealand's newest citizens to our community late last year.
Some stunning weather recently!

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