From Michelle Donelan <[email protected]>
Subject My Latest Newsletter
Date December 30, 2022 1:47 PM
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My final newsletter of the year with an update on my campaigns and my highlights from the year |

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Welcome to my final newsletter of the year.

I hope that you are well and that you were able to have a peaceful and restful Christmas, as we marked the birth of our Lord.

Below you can find an update on my local campaigns and some of my highlights from the past year, including the lovely Platinum Jubilee celebrations, some of my favourite visits and meeting so many of you at my resident's surgeries.

If there is anything you would like my help with, or if you would like to speak to me at one of my surgeries in the New Year, please do not hesitate to let me know.

Finally, I’d like to wish you and your family a very Happy New Year!


** Progress on Local Campaigns

There has been some really fantastic progress on my local campaigns this year, including the Melksham House Levelling Up Fund Bid, my campaign to #GetCorshamAStation, securing funding for improving the A350 in Chippenham, my campaign on the one way system in Bradford-on-Avon, my work to fight for fairer local fuel prices, and successfully campaigning for a Bank Hub in Melksham. This includes:

💡 Leading a £5 million Levelling Up Fund Bid for Melksham House for the second round of funding - if successful this would free up existing funding allocated to the project for other areas of Melksham

🚂 Formally submitting the Strategic Outline Business Case to the Department for Transport to show that a station in Corsham is viable, having secured £50,000 to make this happen

🛣️ Securing £26.625 million to dual the remaining sections of the A350 in Chippenham, improve the Bumpers Farm roundabout and deliver a slip road

➡️ Continuing to push for progress on a one way system in Bradford-on-Avon, asking the Town Council to agree the terms for modelling which Wiltshire Council will part fund

⛽️ Fighting for fairer local fuel prices, pushing this with the Competition and Markets Authority, Sainsbury’s and the Department for Transport

🏦 Successfully campaigning with LINK for a bank hub and depositing services in Melksham following the closure of Lloyds

💡 Securing £3.5 million of investment for a Business Cyber Centre in Chippenham, providing a hub for local enterprise

🏥 Campaigning for more investment into Chippenham and Melksham Community Hospitals

🚓 Delivering more police and safer streets, including organising crime forums for you to have your say

🦷 Securing £4.5 million for improving access to dentistry in the South West, and making sure Wiltshire gets its fair share

📈 Establishing and chairing a Chippenham High Street board to get all of the key stakeholders together to deliver improvements for the High Street

🌳 Protecting Wiltshire's environment and rural way of life, including delivering hundreds of thousands of pounds for habitat restoration, tree planting and increasing biodiversity

📚 Delivered on my pledge for more funding for local schools

📩 Supporting resident's with more than 10,000 cases this year

I will of course continue to push all of my campaigns in the New Year and look forward to making further progress in 2023, securing investment for our services and delivering the improvements you want to see.

** Support for Ukraine

As we approach the end of the year, I can’t help but think of the people of Ukraine and the difficulties they have experienced this year. Putin’s barbaric war has forced hundreds of thousands of people to leave their homes, and caused devastating destruction in some of Ukraine’s most beautiful towns and cities.

Since the beginning of the war, I think we have all been overwhelmed by the kindness and generosity we have seen for our Ukrainian friends, both here in Wiltshire and across the country.

100,000 Ukrainian refugees have been resettled in the UK, something which simply would not be possible without your support. In recognition of this, we have just announced that the £350 'thank you' payments will be extended from 12 months to two years. We will also be increasing the payments to £500 per month.

I was also overwhelmed by the generosity earlier this year when residents came into my office in droves to drop off much needed supplies which Dawid and his team sent off to the front line. Together we raised over £1,800 through my Prize Draw for Ukraine with local companies coming forward to donate some really excellent prizes.

The UK has been a staunch ally of Ukraine since the beginning of the war, and our support for our Ukrainian friends will remain absolutely steadfast.

Thank you for all for your support to helping our Ukrainian friends in their hour of need. If you are in a position to donate to help support the people of Ukraine please use this link: [link removed]


** Out and About This Year

It’s been absolutely lovely to get round the constituency and meet so many of you over the last 12 months, with events, visits and knocking on doors to find out how I can help.

Some of my favourite visits included finding out about the cutting edge pharmaceutical work taking place at Bath asu in Corsham, visiting Chiesi’s in Chippenham, speaking to pupil’s at Frogwell Primary School in Chippenham at their Internet Safety Assembly, attending a jam-packed Forest and Sandridge School Fete in Melksham, and meeting the volunteers at Saxon Group Riding for the Disabled in Bradford-on-Avon.

Some other personal highlights this year include judging the Jubilee Best Dressed Window Display in Melksham, opening the Scarecrow Trail in Cepen Park, visiting Willows Care Farm in Broughton Gifford again, giving the opening speech at the Wiltshire and Swindon Careers Hub Annual Conference, speaking to West Wilts Radio in Bradford-on-Avon, meeting the Sixth Form from Hardenhuish in Parliament, and holding my very first Careers Fair in Chippenham.

** Platinum Jubilee Celebrations

Right across the area we have a small army of volunteers who do such brilliant work on everything from supporting our local charities to running local events. This community spirit was out in full force over the Platinum Jubilee weekend earlier in the year, marking the late Queen Elizabeth II's 70 years on the throne. The long weekend is certainly one of my highlights from the last 12 months, from fetes, to welly-wanging to plate smashing!

Some of my favourite events from the long weekend included the Save the Hop Pole BBQ in Limpley Stoke, fetes in Shaw and Whitley villages, and at Hilperton Village Hall, the market place fair and Royal Exhibition in Melksham, the party at Monkton Park Golf Course, and Picnic in the Park at Chippenham.

A final highlight was the Big Lunar Lunch in Lacock on the Sunday evening – I had the very difficult ask of judging the best children’s crown. All of the children in Lacock village also received a special mug to commemorate the Jubilee, a tradition which many people will remember from their own childhoods.

The whole weekend really did show the very best of our Wiltshire community spirit, and it was a pleasure to have attended so many fantastic events.

** Resident's Surgeries

It's been lovely to see so many of you at my resident's surgeries this year, talking about local and national issues and helping with the issues you are experiencing.

Think it’s so important for me to be as accessible as possible as your local MP - always end up chatting to folk who have a problem I may be able to help with but wouldn’t think to get in touch.

As you can see it has certainly been another busy year!

Thank you for taking the time to read my newsletter throughout the year. Once again, I'd like to wish you and your family a very happy New Year.

If you would like to speak to me at one of my surgeries, or if I can help in any other way, please do not hesitate to let me know.

Best wishes,

Michelle Donelan
Member of Parliament for Chippenham Constituency

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