An e-newsletter from your MP, Mary Robinson.
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Welcome to my latest e-newsletter updating you on my activities in Parliament and the constituency. It's now Parliamentary recess and I'm out and about in the constituency, visiting shops, schools, churches and meeting (socially distanced!) with constituents. A summer like no other, we have seen a big rise in the 'stay-cation'.
However you enjoy your summer, do stay safe!
Further guidelines in Greater Manchester
As difficult and disappointing it may be for us to see a return of some lockdown restrictions, people appreciate the importance of avoiding another further rises in infections, especially when we have worked so hard to ensure the disease does not spread uncontrollably. I have asked the Government and the Labour Mayor of Manchester to ensure lower rated areas like Cheadle do not continue to be included if the evidence shows that improvements are being made and numbers are relatively low.
At the time of writing, the rate in the borough of Stockport is 26.6 per 100,000. Whilst this doesn't seem very high, even a seemingly small number of cases can spread very quickly. The majority of new infections have been from socialising in people's homes and gardens, so for the time being, the message stays the same, wear a face covering, continue social distancing and wash your hands. This way, we will soon be able to get back to normal.
Shovel-ready projects ready to go ASAP in Cheadle!
Half a million for Cheadle town centre!
On the back of my successful bid to have Cheadle included in the £25 million pound Towns Fund scheme, the Government has also announced that Cheadle will be separately receiving up to half a million pounds in order to fund immediate shovel-ready projects. With a tight deadline which requires works to be concluded by March 2021, projects could potentially include improvements to local parks including Diamond Jubilee and Abney Hall, or for highstreet cycling and walking improvements. This is great news for Cheadle in the short term and will help in our preparation for our bid for the Towns Fund bid for a new station in Cheadle.
Local rail is invaluable to us and I welcome the improvements
£600 million in funding for our northern railways
And the good news for transport investment in our area continues with the recent announcement by the Secretary of State for Transport, Grant Shapps, of £600 million pounds of funding for Northern railways. Levelling up our northern economy means that we must level up infrastructure spending and service provision across the north. Plans include electrification and redoubling of rail tracks, and I have separately applied to Government for some Funding for our area as part of plans to reverse closures. This money will also be a solution to the Manchester rail 'bottleneck' which causes capacity issues and a council for the north will work with ministers to address any delays in project delivery too.
Home Office Minister Priti Patel is strong on policing
We need accurate crime stats to effectively tackle this problem
Our local police are working hard in challenging situations to deal with Covid-related issues as well as local crime and complex casework. Acquisitive crime (burglary) is a key issue in Cheadle Hulme and Bramhall. People regularly raise these crimes as a concern and I am surveying to highlight our area's priority issues here ([link removed]) . However, it is simply not acceptable that the statistics for local crime are not readily available. Last month I met with the Home Secretary, Priti Patel to discuss this issue and the failure of Greater Manchester's iOPS (computerised system). It is impossible for us to accurately view the crime picture in Greater Manchester without reliable and easily accessible crime figures. Our police officers are working hard, but in order to assess the effectiveness of the Greater Manchester Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC), Andy Burnham, this data is important. I was pleased to hear from the Minister that an internal review
- concluding in October 2020 - into the effectiveness of PCCs will be taking place.
The ONS report shows GMP's data has been missing for a year
Supporting our local artisans at Cheadle Maker's Market
Cheadle Maker's Market
It was great to be back at the Maker's Market last month in Cheadle, and the rain didn't dampen our spirits. The organisers have worked so hard to put in safety measures, including physical barriers, social distancing and a one-way system. As it is now so important that we protect each other by wearing masks, I took the opportunity to buy a homemade one from one of the stalls.
A recent visit to Mirrlees Fields
Mirrlees Fields, nestled in the heart of Woodsmoor, are currently designated as green space and I have argued that they should have protected status. However, proposals have been put forward by MAN Energy to offer protection for part of the fields in exchange for a development covering 35% of it. This would mean that the remaining 65% could potentially be put into a trust for future maintenance. Whilst no plans have been submitted as of yet, we are keen to hear your views on this proposal, so please complete the survey here ([link removed]) .
With Government backing we will meet the 2050 environmental target
Valuing our environment
Every year the climate change lobby comes to parliament and I always like to meet them, This year, however, I met with them on a zoom call. It was great to talk to residents, who like me, care about our local environment. Making homes energy efficient and cheaper to run and keep warm was another area that both I and the residents I spoke with are passionate about. We discussed the changes which we can make and the laws which have been brought forward to ensure that we have green homes built in an environmentally sustainable way whilst preserving green spaces and making protecting green spaces an important part of our lives. I have long advocated for prioritising building on brownfield and preserving our important green belt land, I am very pleased to see this value take a central role in new planning and environment reforms.
Recess visits to 'Handy Ladies' and Prospect Vale Primary
As life begins to return to a new 'normal', I have been enjoying resuming some visits safely around the constituency.
In July I was lucky enough to visit St. Cuthbert's church in Cheadle, and also see first hand the amazing work the 'Handy Ladies' are doing to support our community at this time. While I was there, the mouth watering aroma of the one hundred plus freshly cooked meals they make daily and deliver to those in need was irresistible.
I also visited Prospect Vale Primary School, in Heald Green, and saw all the Covid-secure measures they have worked hard to put in place. Children should feel safe inside and outside of their homes, and Mr McDowell and his team showed me exactly how they have been doing that. I also had a tour around the school and I got to see the wonderful Forest School and plans for their playground. It was their final day receiving pupils, and it was good to see their preparations for the children full time in September.
Seeing the 'Handy Ladies' at work at St Cuthberts in Cheadle
Meeting with the Prospect Vale Primary School team
Eat Out to Help Out
The instructions to stay at home in March obviously called time on eating out for going to the pub. Even with Government grants and support, many restaurants and cafes have suffered, which is why the Chancellor announced the landmark scheme 'Eat Out to Help Out'. August marks the beginning of the scheme which will help our hospitality industry recover and bolster confidence in eating out.
Earlier last month, the Chancellor announced millions in funds for restaurants, cafes and pubs, to enable them to offer 50% off food and non-alcoholic drinks, up to £10 per person. This scheme is available Monday to Wednesday - I'm really looking forward to some family meals out!
In addition to regular casework correspondence, I receive a number of campaign emails and postcards each month regarding various topics. While I always prefer to get back to people directly in the first instance, each month I publish these views on my website. You can read these here ([link removed]) .
I hold regular surgeries both at my office in Cheadle Hulme and around the constituency. In-person surgeries are suspended at the moment in the light of the current situation. However, my team and I will be assisting on all enquiries so please do continue to get in touch with us.
Thank you for taking the time to read my latest e-newsletter. As ever, if there are any issues you'd like to raise with me then please do get in touch.
Mary Robinson MP
Member of Parliament for Cheadle
8A Station Rd | Cheadle Hulme | SK8 5AE
0161 672 6855
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Mary Robinson MP . 8A Station Road . Cheadle Hulme . Stockport, SK8 5AE . United Kingdom