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Vicky Ford InTouch November 2022
As the country faces serious challenges in the months ahead, I thought that I would share some positive news from across Chelmsford.
October was a hugely exciting month for Chelmsford infrastructure as the new bridge was carefully transferred, centimetre by centimetre, onto its new pillars in place across the A12 and the railway line. I am told this is the largest piece of curved British steel infrastructure anywhere in the country. It weighs 1,500 tonnes. The bridge forms the access to the new railway station at Beaulieu Park and the North East Bypass. It is an absolutely key part of Chelmsford’s future infrastructure.
The plans for Beaulieu Park Station are moving forward too. GB Rail Freight had put in an objection, but this has now been withdrawn, so the project is progressing with all permissions in place to develop the station. The station design also includes a passing loop so that fast trains can overtake stopping services. This will improve the reliability of train services all across the Great Eastern Mainline and more services will be able to operate.
Detailed design and planning work is also continuing on proposals for the new junction at the Army and Navy.
I would like to thank all those who attended my recent Apprenticeship, Skills, and Jobs Fair at Anglia Ruskin University. It was absolutely buzzing with many very different companies and organisations taking part and showing the huge range of opportunities that are available for training, apprenticeships, and careers. This is the third time I have organised this event and I am already looking forward to next year.
It was great to meet students from St John Payne School on a recent visit to the House of Commons and Lords. They told me about their thoughts and opinions on various matters ranging from shops in Chelmsford to the importance of having younger voices, women and people from diverse backgrounds in Parliament.
If you would like to arrange a tour of Parliament, please do drop me an email and my team will be delighted to advise you.
I am concerned to hear that the McColl's in Moulsham Lodge, which hosts the local Post Office, is due to close after Christmas. My thoughts are with the staff affected. I have been in touch with McColl's and the Post Office at senior levels to try to find ways so that Post Office services can remain in the local area.
Thank you to local councillor, Rob Gisby, for alerting me to this issue.
It has been a great honour to represent the UK internationally over the past year as a Minister at the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office, particularly on matters to address global food security, tackle climate change and in holding Russia to account for the brutal war in Ukraine. During this period, I have helped to support British businesses in their trade overseas, which helps to create jobs and opportunities in the UK too. We know that we cannot have peace and stability at home when there is insecurity and instability overseas. We are reminded everyday through Putin’s appalling invasion of Ukraine, that events overseas have an impact on us at home.
The UK often plays a unique role in trying to build a more peaceful and prosperous planet. Thank you to the people of Chelmsford for giving me the opportunity to take on this role. It has been an extraordinarily busy year, but I have been very glad to have been able to help with UK foreign policy at this crucial time. I am looking forward to spending time in Chelmsford and to supporting our new Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, from the back benches.
CHRISTMAS CARD COMPETITION
Calling all young artists!
I have recently written to all Primary Schools in Chelmsford to let them know about a competition to design my annual Christmas Card. Each year, I send around 300 cards to organisations and inspiring individuals in Chelmsford and to partners across the world. This year, I am giving talented young artists from Chelmsford the chance to design the card.
If you know a primary school aged child from Chelmsford who would like to take part do let them know. Entries need to arrive by Friday 17 November, and I am delighted that Nicholas Henshall, Dean of Chelmsford Cathedral, has agreed to judge the competition. The winner and two runners up will be able to choose between a £15 book token or a House of Commons Teddy Bear.
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As ever, please do stay in touch. My email is [email protected]
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