Westminster diary

on .

On Monday I attended the All Party Group on Park Homes. I have hundreds of constituents who choose to live in Park Homes and many of them do so with a good relationship with the Park owner. Sadly, some do not. Much has been done in recent years to make law tougher on rogue Park owners but there are still changes I want to see.

On Tuesday I attended the launch of a report I have co-sponsored with the Centre for Social Justice. "Housing First" makes the case for homelessness to be tackled by getting people housed as a first step, and every other problem they face falling into place thereafter. Obvious? You would think so but for too long we have sought to help people on the streets with all the overlaying problems they have. An ex soldier addressed the packed meeting in an extraordinarily powerful way. He ended his remarks with the words,"the best thing that has ever happened to me is a postcode". The Secretary of State, Sajid Javid, gave his pledge to end rough sleeping. Just the kind of bold ambition I wanted to hear.

Later the same day I chaired another packed meeting. This was the All Party Environment Group. The Secretary of State for the Environment, Andrea Leadsom, came along to share her views on agriculture and the environment post Brexit. These meetings are attended by MPs and Peers and many from beyond Parliament including environmental campaign groups and scientists.

Alongside this were high octane Parliamentary events such as the Bill to allow the invoking of Article 50. This is the trigger to commence the process of leaving the EU. Whatever side you are on this is a seismic event in our history. In years to come we will see if it will be a success and Britain will be the stronger for it, or whether it will be the opposite and that the United Kingdom will have been pulled apart. It goes without saying that I will be working flat out for the former.

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Richard Benyon was re-elected as the Member of Parliament for Newbury on 7 May 2015, with an increased majority of 26,368. Richard won 61 per cent of the vote share.



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