Travelling down to Party Conference in Brighton, by train proved to be somewhat of a nightmare: The journey took many hours and the last lap was by coach! I really do find it incredible that in this day and age we have to put up with such a shockingly inefficient rail service. Actually we don’t have to put up with this expensive chaos because the next Labour Government will work to create a joined up national rail service run for the benefit of passengers. That aside the Conference was a very interesting and useful experience and I had the opportunity to meet with representatives from dozens of organisations including: the Royal College of Physicians, The Anthony Nolan organisation dedicated to saving the lives of people with blood cancer, BT and MIND the mental health charity. I was particularly pleased to get the opportunity to raise the issue of inadequate Broadband provision in Cliviger, Worsthorne and Briercliffe with one of BT’s chiefs. It was quite exciting in the main hall to get the chance to sit on the front bench for the Shadow Chancellor’s speech courtesy of my new role as PPS (Parliamentary Private Secretary) to the Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Seema Malhotra
Back in Burnley I was delighted to accept an invitation to open the National Old People’s Day event organised by Burnley’s Senior Forum. I have been a regular attendee at the Forum meetings for many years and I have seen first- hand the good work that they do. This event was well attended and supported by many agencies offering services and advice for our older residents. For me the highlight was the performance given by the talented Fifty Something Theatre Group. The Group was formed in 1996 and aims to give older people, the opportunity to participate in all aspects of the performing arts and I can tell you they were a real pleasure to watch. They have been shortlisted for the Grassroots Giving 2015 funding award and they need your vote (they’ve already got mine)To support them visit www.skiptongrg.co.uk or call in at the Skipton Building Society. This well organised event provided an excellent lunch for all those who attended but unfortunately I did not have time to stay to enjoy it. I was as usual dashing off and it was next stop Warburtons Bakery.
Warburtons is the UK’s largest bakery and is a family firm in every sense. Established in way back in 1876 by Thomas and Ellen Warburton, the company is today owned and run by the fifth generation of Warburtons. The Warburtons Bakery in Burnley which opened in 1981 is an impressive operation producing a range of bread products in an efficient but friendly environment where it is clear that all staff feel a sense of pride and commitment and play their full part in the delivery of Warburton family values. The company have a number of community initiatives including support for Burnley’s food bank.
At the end of the week it was great to see the Clarets back to winning ways at Rotherham and of course I would like to congratulate to Tom Heaton on his selection for the England Team Squad.