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Summer’s here and I am using the time away from Westminster to take my pull-up banner for my “Summer Tour” of High Streets and shopping areas around Dudley South, chatting to shoppers and listening to their views and concerns.
As I write this, I am half-way through this year’s tour and have already visited Wall Heath, Bromley, Woodside, Wordsley, Pensnett and Brierley Hill so far this week, with sessions in Brockmoor, Kingswinford, Netherton and a return to Brierley Hill still to come. If you see me out and about, come over and say hello.
Unsurprisingly, the two big issues that have come up so far this week are Boris and Brexit.
There is a lot of support for our new Prime Minister – including amongst people who told me that they don’t normally vote Conservative and people who voted to stay in the EU – as well as recognition of the tough task he has ahead of him.
Most people who have stopped to talk to me can’t understand why – three years after a referendum where 71 per cent of voters in Dudley South backed Brexit – we haven’t left yet. The truth is that politicians who have voted to block, to delay and to frustrate Brexit are letting down voters on all sides who took part in the referendum in good faith on the basis that the result would be implemented.
Boris Johnson has been clear: we must now leave the European Union on 31st October no matter what. I hope that the Government can secure an agreement that respects Brexit and works for both the UK and the EU because it has to be in everybody’s interests to avoid unnecessary disruption and the impact that would have on people’s jobs and our economy, but if the EU refuses to compromise then we must leave anyway. People in Dudley South voted in large numbers to leave – not to ‘leave only if the EU lets us’.
Aside from Brexit, the new Prime Minister has already outlined his plans to recruit an additional 20,000 police officers and to make sure that our schools get more funding. We have a bright future ahead of us once Brexit has been delivered.
I will be live on Black Country Radio this Saturday morning from 10am, so tune in if you get the chance. My summer tour then finishes at Brierley Hill Market on Saturday from 12.30pm. Pop in if you’re nearby.
I’m taking my family for a couple of weeks away from next week, but my office door is always open during 9-5 Monday-Friday for constituents to get in touch or ask for my help with a particular problem. You can call us on 01384 913123 or pop into my office in Wordsley High Street if there is anything I can help with.
Have a great summer.