by Andrea Jenkyns MP
I hope you are all keeping safe and well, and enjoying the relaxed outdoor rules. I hope some of you have found time to enjoy an outdoor meal or drink in one of the fantastic hospitality venues across Morley & Outwood- thankfully the weather had been kind!
In this month's newsletter I have updates on my work over the past month in Westminster and here in our community.
I would also like to pay tribute to HRH Prince Philip, who died this month aged 99. This was heart breaking news. The duke dedicated his life in service to our nation, from fighting in WW2 to supporting our Queen for nearly 8 decades.
I remember meeting him when I became a Councillor. His passion for people was a testament to a life spent in service to the Royal Family, the nation, and the Commonwealth. A true gentleman, and a Great Briton.
My thoughts and prayers and love are with the Queen and the Royal Family - and I would like to thank those who have contacted me to express their same feelings.
Residents will be aware that gyms, outdoor hospitality, and hairdressers reopened this month. On May 17th, the next step in our roadmap will, data depending, be reached and I am pleased to say that the vaccines Minister has said things are looking good. The next step will see indoor hospitality re-open, and the rule of 6 indoors. Hotels, and indoor sports classes will also reopen.
The fantastic British vaccination success continues to bring us hope and pride, and I would like to thank all the brilliant NHS teams and volunteers for making our rapid roll out - one of the best in the world - possible.
There is light at the end of the tunnel, and we are making positive progress. I wish you all a safe and restful May bank holiday weekend.
Reasons For Hope
Vaccine Roll Out: Huge Success
Nearly 34 MILLION people - 51% of the population, have received their first dose of vaccine, protecting those most at risk from coronavirus.
AND 14 Million people- 21% of the UK, have already had their second dose.
The high uptake of vaccine and the phenomenal roll out in the UK is driving our success and helping us win this battle. Please remember to get your second dose for full protection.
Reproduction Rate: Steady
The current R rate in England is between 0.8-1.
This month, ahead of the Local and Mayoral election on Thursday May 6th, I have been out supporting fantastic local candidates including Matthew Robinson, our fantastic local champion standing to be the first Mayor of West Yorkshire.
We spoke to voters about his vision for West Yorkshire including creating decent local jobs, new apprenticeships, regenerating town centres and supporting out high streets. And doing this without new local taxes - there’s £1 billion budget and every penny should be spent well before we ask people for a pound more.
I encourage everyone to vote Conservative in this upcoming election!
This month I asked local school children to take part in a St George’s Day themed drawing competition, in the hope that more would learn the story of our country’s patron saint. I was overjoyed with the responses, with so many fantastic drawings it was difficult to choose a winner!
After careful contemplation, I had to expand the prizes as there were too many great submissions! Tilly (aged 6), Bobby (9), Edward (5), Oliver (5), Alice (6 ¾), and Max (3) will each receive a book token.
Well done to everyone who took part, there were so many fantastic drawings of St George and the dragon!
Congratulations video here: https://www.andreajenkyns.co.uk/news/andrea-picks-winner-st-georges-day-drawing-competition
I visited the fantastic team at the Hare & Hounds pub and saw their preparations ahead of re-opening today.
I've visited this great local pub several times over the years and each time I am blown away by Landlady, Jackie's positivity and passion for our community. Once again, the team have excelled themselves and improved the outdoor space even when you thought it couldn't get any better!
This month, I held a roundtable with domestic violence charities to discuss the experiences of those working in this important sector and to highlight the impact of lockdown.
By bringing together a wide range of stakeholders, including Safe Lives, Behind Closed Doors, Well Women Centre Wakefield, Leeds Women's Aid, Man Kind, IDAS, Rosalie Ryrie, Penny Appeal. I hope to be able to take away what is happening on the ground and report back to my Parliamentary colleagues and look for important areas of reform.
We discussed in detail the cycle of abuse, and what charities would like to see, such as changes to meet the demands in society to protect people, but also prevention work in schools and with early offenders to ensure people are educated around abuse and the different forms it takes, including emotional and verbal.
The data is still being determined, but we all know that domestic abuse has been a significant issue during the lockdown periods. I would stress to everyone, man or woman, that help is available and please do reach out- nobody should go through this and we are all here to help.
Links to each of these charities can be found by clicking on their names above, or on my website. Thank you.
My video following this important session: https://www.andreajenkyns.co.uk/news/andrea-working-charities-tackle-domestic-abuse
In Prime Ministers Questions this week I asked the PM about Labour's decades of neglect. You can watch my question, and the Prime Minister's response in full here: https://www.andreajenkyns.co.uk/news/andrea-asks-about-labours-neglect-prime-minister-questions
For too long Labour have taken our great Northern heartlands for granted, over-promising & under-delivering.
Thursday, May 6th is our chance to change that, to boost our Covid recovery & create jobs by electing Matt Robinson for West Yorkshire Mayor, Ben Houchen & Jill Mortimer to give the North the representation it deserves!
Fantastic to chat with Paul, the Landlord of the New Albion pub in Alverthorpe ahead of the re-opening of outdoor hospitality
Lots of effort has gone into expanding the outdoor area, thankfully we've had some good weather!
Conservative Home: Global Britain can lead the way on farm animal welfare standards
As residents will know I am a passionate animal rights campaigner. This month I published an article on how Britain can lead the way on farm animal welfare standards. You can find this article here: https://www.andreajenkyns.co.uk/news/conservative-home-global-britain-can-lead-way-farm-animal-welfare-standards
I visited the Halfway House Morley, and met with new manager Joanne. Great work has been done to this local pub to get it ready for re-opening, and I congratulated Joanne on taking the entrepreneurial leap into the trade.
There are also 3 fantastic rooms available to stay in, lets support our local hospitality safely!
It was heart-warming to see respect being paid to the Duke of Edinburgh.
Morley's Union Flag, and Outwood's St George's cross, flying at half mast for Prince Philip. A fitting tribute to a great Briton
Morley’s town crier was out, and visual tributes appeared across Morley and Outwood. In him, we have lost a national hero.
This month I received letters from year six pupils at Stanley Grove Primary school, on a wide range of important subjects such as homelessness and littering.
It was great to read the words of these young people and know our future is in safe hands. I have written to each of them personally in reply, and would like to thank them for taking the time to write to me.
It was great to visit Outwood Grange Academy once again this month, where I met the brilliant new Headteacher, Sheriden Hutchinson-Jones, and heard about her fantastic ideas to build on the work of this excellent school. I look forward to working with her going forward.
Regular exercise is vital for mental wellbeing, so it was great to visit Morley Leisure Centre this month following their reopening after lockdown, and see the steps that they’ve taken to ensure that their facilities are covid-secure. Great work!
Our local hospitality venues have worked hard to ensure we are all safe. I visited East Ardsley Conservative Club to see the steps they've taken - lets all support our fantastic local pubs and clubs!
Last week I was on ITV's Peston programme, discussing the latest political news.
On a debate surrounding left behind communities, I raised the important point that white working class boys are statistically more likely to commit suicide, go to prison, and be behind educationally. Levelling up must mean we bring the whole country, and all our communities, forward.
It was fantastic to see residents across Morley & Outwood helping to kick-start our economy after re-opening.
Data from Revolut shows that in our area, compared with pre-lockdown Monday, overall spending was up 58.7%
Spending in barbers was up 329.5%
High street spending was up 152.6%