Why should Cheltenham pupils get less funding than those in Tower Hamlets?

When opportunity comes along, you have to seize it.

So when the text came through on my mobile that David Cameron wanted to meet me at the Conference in Manchester, I changed my plans.

And I immediately thought about how I could take this opportunity to speak up for Cheltenham. Chit-chat is all very well, but it's not what MPs are paid for. I wanted to make this meeting count.

So I decided to raise the issue of Cheltenham's schools.

I took my campaign for more funding for our schoolchildren to the top. I made the point to the PM (politely you understand!) that pupils in schools like Balcarras, Bournside, Pittville, All Saints' deserve a fair deal.

There is no reasonable justification for young Cheltonians receiving hundreds of pounds less per head in funding than children in, say, Tower Hamlets.

From his reaction, this clearly hit home. I am cautiously optimistic that we will see some progress for my campaign.

I am passionate about improving Cheltenham's schools because I feel so strongly about social mobility, both in Cheltenham and in our country. In Cameron's speech, whilst there was much to welcome – from committing to strong national defence to tackling extremism – it was his passage on social mobility which resonated most with me.

It is plain wrong that in the UK in 2015 the salary you earn is more linked to what your father got paid that in any other major country. That has got to change. Education is absolutely key to that.

In other news, this time of year shows why we are so proud of Cheltenham. First, the Literature Festival was once again a stunning success, bringing many high-profile figures to our town. I managed to catch the EU debate and it was packed. Events like these hugely enrich our cultural life in Cheltenham and put our town on the map.

Second, it was a privilege to attend the Gloucestershire Business Awards at the Racecourse. In category after category Cheltenham businesses were winning awards.

It was a powerful reminder of the talent and success we have in our town. But it would be a great mistake to take that for granted. I believe we must redouble our efforts to keep Cheltenham open for business.  

Lastly, I did my charity skydive over the weekend. I won't sugar-coat it: jumping out of a plane at 15,000ft is unnerving. But it's something everyone should do once.

If the opportunity comes along that is.