Plastic Free Pledge in Cheltenham

Thomas Carlyle, the philosopher, has been in the news this week. His portrait, which was slashed in 1914 by suffragette Anne Hunt, is back on display. It’s there to mark the 100th anniversary of the Representation of the People Act 1918, which gave some women the vote.

Cheltenham's Growth and GWR

Cheltenham is on the up. Our secondary schools have more funding; our GCHQ-backed cyber innovation centre is transforming the town into a powerful tech brand; our festivals are going from strength to strength; and new restaurants and businesses are opening.

Boot's Corner

The closure of Boot’s Corner is creeping ever closer. Royal Well Road is being reconfigured. New traffic signs will be going up behind the Muni. Within a matter of months one of Cheltenham’s key arterial routes will be blocked off.

National Health Service

The pressures on our NHS have been front and centre in recent days. But amidst the national coverage I wanted to celebrate one local statistic which, surprisingly perhaps, has received little if any media attention.

Cheltenham in 2018

Happy New Year! I hope you had a wonderful celebration, be it in Cheltenham or elsewhere.

Plastic Pollution

I warmly welcomed the news this week that the Environment Secretary Michael Gove is planning a robust set of measures to dramatically cut plastic pollution.

EU Nationals

This week marked the agreement between the UK and the EU27 on the first phase of the labyrinthine Brexit negotiations. There’s a long way to go – Churchill’s ‘end of the beginning’ quote comes to mind - but this was a crucial and welcome milestone.

The A417 and PMQs

You wait ages for a bus, then three come along at once. The same is true for Prime Minister’s Questions in Parliament it seems. I’ve spent months trying to catch the Speaker’s eye. And now this week is the third Wednesday in a row that I’ve been called to quiz the PM.

Cheltenham's Shops

The next few weeks are a crucial time for Cheltenham’s shops, which do so much to give our town its diversity and vitality.

EU Withdrawal Bill

I won’t be joining the so-called ‘mutineers’, but the Daily Telegraph headline about Conservative backbenchers was ill-judged and wrong.