My Newsletter 02/02/18

Welcome to the latest issue of my weekly newsletter.

I received some sad news this week that Ken Bullivant who was well-known across Bestwood and Nottingham in the Trade Union and Labour movements passed away last week. Ken was a smart, witty and tenacious man and he will be missed. I have sent my condolences to the family and will be attending the funeral.

As I’ve said before, I will strive to send you a newsletter like this each Friday to keep you updated on the work I’m doing in Parliament as well as in our community, and to inform you of any interesting events taking place in our area. To help me with the latter, if you are running or know of anything that you think may be of interest to others, feel free to drop me an email at and I will include it in future issues. Please also forward it onto anyone you think may be interested.

All-Party Parliamentary Groups

Getting things done in Westminster is a tricky art – and each MP does it slightly differently. One way to push issues is through All-Party Parliamentary Groups. These Groups bring MPs from both the Commons and Lords together, on a cross-party basis, to tackle the issues they care about.

This week I became the Co-Chair of two such APPGs: the APPG for the East Midlands and the APPG for Mega-Sporting Events and Human Rights.

The APPG for the East Midlands does what it says on the tin. It will allow Parliamentarians of all parties and political opinions to work together to promote the region we represent and are so proud of.  I will Co-Chair Nigel Mills MP. The East Midlands always seems to be neglected in favour of the rest of the country, particularly London and the South-East, and while I bring attention to this regularly, by working together across the party divide in a very split region, we will be able to achieve a lot more. I’ll update you on the work we do together as it happens.

The aims of the APPG for Mega-Sporting Events and Human Rights may seem slightly less obvious. The term Mega-Sporting Events describes sporting occasions of the largest possible scale: think Olympic Games, World Cups, Commonwealth Games amongst others. As you’ll remember from the 2012 Olympics, these events require tremendous amounts of planning and work for years and years in advance, if not even longer. This often leads to human rights being sacrificed to save money or time. In Qatar for example where preparation for the 2022 FIFA World Cup is well under way, there have been deaths and thousands more subject to horrendous working conditions. The exact figures aren’t even known and this is just one example. This is not acceptable and along with Co-Chair Baroness Young of Hornsey, we will be working towards improving the conditions for such events.

Teeth Team

On Wednesday evening, I joined Teeth Team for their Annual Report presentation, hosted by Wendy Morton MP. Teeth Team is a charity active in 9 Nottingham North Primary Schools – providing teeth brushing, dental assessments, fluoride varnishing and dental education to help improve oral hygiene and prevent tooth decay.

Having good dental health can go a long way, much further than you’d think, as it is a good indicator of general health, which is a good indicator of education, which is a good indicator of future life prospects. It’s a small step, and while brushing your teeth regularly won’t guarantee anything, it’s certainly an important step in the right direction, in an area that often gets neglected. Over 1 in 4 children in the UK suffers from tooth decay and it’s the most common reason for children under 5 to have to go to hospital, and Teeth Team are doing tremendous work for our children to help fix this.

As well hearing from Wendy Morton as host, we heard from Teeth Team CEO Chris Groombridge, three dental nurses involved with Teeth Team, Caroline Coleman of Simplyhealth and the Rt. Hon Alan Johnson, who first piloted Teeth Team in his constituency of Hull. All of them gave a wonderful representation of how far Teeth Team has come, and how it can continue to grow in the future. Hopefully in more Nottingham North schools.

In Parliament

With yet another sitting Friday this week, I’ve had a long busy week in Westminster. This started with questioning the Education Minister on Monday. I received assurance from the new Minister of State for Education that that relationship and sex education lessons would continue to be lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender inclusive and reflect the needs of all young people, as the previous Secretary of State had also committed to. You can watch my questions and his answers here.

The Foreign Affairs Select Committee has published a report this week on diplomacy post-Brexit. I took the opportunity to press the Chair about the ramifications for tackling Modern Slavery. This can be seen here.

As well as this, and the APPG meetings and Teeth Team event I’ve already mentioned, here is some of the other work that has filled up my week outside of the Chamber:

  • I met with Luigi Leo, the former England Boxing Team manager, to follow up a meeting I had a few weeks ago and discuss the amateur boxing landscape in England.
  • Gemma Egan-Perkins from the Traveller Movement briefed me on the issues that the charity is facing in support of the Gypsy, Roma and Traveller (GRT) communities across the UK. These groups have some of the worst outcomes in the UK yet get little attention so it was interesting to find out about this in more detail and learn what I can do to help.
  • Ahead of the vote on Parliamentary restoration I was given a tour of the estate basement to see just how dire the situation is for myself. In the vote itself, I chose to vote for the cheapest, quickest option which will see the Palace fully decanted from 2025 as this motion passed.
  • I also had meetings with Muscular Dystrophy UK and Alzheimer’s UK – two wonderful health related charities who I’ll be working with to support the groups that each represents.

In Nottingham

  • Recently we had the disappointing news that despite many exciting proposals drawn up Nottingham was not selected as one of twelve pilot sites for Sports England’s new approaches to physical activity. Nevertheless we must still try to do as much as we can so I am meeting the Council next week to discuss it further and I raised it in the Commons yesterday, watch here.
  • One of our key efforts to improve health in our community is through lung cancer screenings – something that we are leading the country in. I have been in touch this week with Paula Chadwick from Roy Castle Foundation by phone for a progress update on rolling out the next wave. This programme has saved lives already and we need to roll it out so it can save more.
  • Today I have just finished an interesting visit to the Tesco Extra on Jennison Street, where I learnt all about the great work they’re doing locally in collaboration with Community Food Connection.
  • Tomorrow I will be meeting with colleagues from the Co-op Party to discuss our plans for the year ahead.

One final thing: The City Council are co-ordinating a social media campaign to highlight the Centenary Cities Nottingham project – celebrating the 100-year anniversary of women gaining the vote. Part of this is a ‘thunderclap’ on Facebook and Twitter, where subscribers all send the same message at the same time to get maximum exposure. To join in with your Facebook or Twitter, please sign up here.

That’s all for now, back again next week!

What’s On

I want these emails to be as interesting as possible. That means there’ll be some politics – it’s important that I am held accountable. But I also want to offer information about what’s on locally. So, if you have an event you’d like me to advertise, let me know.

‘We are the Lions, Mr Manager’
A play telling the story of the Grunswick dispute, and its inspirational leader, Jayaben Desai, put on by Nottinghamshire TUC and Townsend Productions
Wednesday 14th February, 7pm, Polish Eagle Club, Sherwood Rise, NG7 6JN
Thursday 15th February, 7pm, Create Theatre, Mansfield, NG18 5BH
Tickets £12, (£6 conc.), for further info for the Nottingham performance email or call/text the secretary, Liam Conway, on 07746620779. For the Mansfield performance, email/text/call Ann Donlan (01623 416895 or Jon Dale (07779 205101

Nottingham Festival of Science & Curiosity
Various events bringing Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths to the heart of Nottingham
Various Locations
14th-21st February
For more information and full schedule, please visit

Poems in the Pub
Open Mic Night, Free Admission, Local Talent, Full Bar
The William Peverel, Bulwell
Once a month, 7pm for 7:30pm start, next on 1st March

Drop In Café
All welcome for a free cuppa and biscuit, and a place to sit and have a chat
Our Lady of Perpetual Succour Parish Community Centre, Brooklyn Rd, Bulwell NG6 9ES
Thursdays, 9:30am–12:30pm

St Philip’s/St Matthew’s Knit & Natter groups
St Philip’s Church, Knights Close, Top Valley
1st and 3rd Wednesdays every month, 10am-12pm
Bestwood Community Centre, Gainsford Crescent, Bestwood Estate
2nd Monday every month, 10am-12pm

Messy Church Bestwood/Bulwell Forest
Bestwood Community Centre, Gainsford Crescent, Bestwood Estate
Various Tuesdays, 4:30-6pm
Bestwood Park Church, Beckhampton Rd, Bestwood Park
Various Thursdays, 4:30-6pm
Church on Rise Park, Revelstoke Way, Rise Park
Various Thursdays, 5-6:30pm

Messy Church
Drinks, crafts, activities, bible stories and a meal for all ages and interests
Bulwell United Reform Church, Broomhill Road/Brooklyn Road, Bulwell
Usually first Saturday of every month, 10:30am-12:30pm

Bestwood Park Church’s Bestop Kitchen
Social Eating Event, Donations Welcome
Bestwood Park Church, Beckhampton Road, NG5 5NG
Every Tuesday, 12-3pm

Free Community Cinema
Free screenings of films, everyone welcome!
St John’s Church, Key’s Close, Bulwell
2nd Friday every month, 7pm

Bulwell Connectors
Free monthly group developing opportunities for more art in public places in Bulwell. With trips to galleries and hands-on creative workshops, this group is for local people who want to be arts champions for Bulwell. Facilitated by Nottingham Contemporary associate artist Gillian Brent
Bulwell Riverside, Community Room 2
2nd Tuesday every month, 6-8pm
For further info:, @CreativeNNorth,

Crafty Ladies
Bring along a project, or learn to do something new.
St Martins Church, St Martin’s Rd, Off Strelley Rd, Bilborough, NG8 3BH
Every Wednesday, 11am – 2pm
50p, for further info:

Crochet Clinic
Community Room at Tesco Bulwell, Jennison St, NG6 8EQ (upstairs near the cafe)
First Wednesday of every month, 6:30pm–8:30pm
£5 (covers refreshments and materials)
For further info:


E.ON are currently offering free cavity wall and loft insulation for homes across Britain
• Potential combined savings of more than £1,000 from free insulation and savings on heating bills
• Limited offer, regardless of energy supplier
• Free insulation details are available at or 0330 400 1083


Sound as a Pound have asked me to advertise their 2-day finance ‘Money Talks’ courses in Nottingham. Transport and lunch are both provided, attendees will receive a £10 gift voucher for each day and there are plenty of other freebies on offer, as well as some sound money-saving advice! For further information you can call 0115 844 3745, email or visit their website at


If you would like your events advertised here, or further information on those advertised, please email me at

That’s all for now! Details of how to get in touch or to have a look at the things I’m doing are below…

All the best,




How to contact me

If you would like to contact me, please email or give my Nottingham North constituency office a ring on 0115 975 2377.

If you are a constituent from Nottingham North e-mailing me regarding a casework issue you are my priority, so please ensure your message includes:

  • your full name
  • your full postal address, including postcode
  • a contact telephone number and
  • any helpful details relevant to your case such as date of birth, reference numbers etc.

Strict parliamentary protocol means I can only deal with issues on behalf of my own constituents. If you aren’t sure whether you live in Nottingham North, you can check who your local MP is by entering your postcode online here:

You may also wish to write to me with your concerns. If so please send your correspondence to Alex Norris MP, House of Commons, London, SW1A OAA. All constituents who take the time and trouble to write a personal letter will receive a reply as a matter of priority.


Other useful links


  • If you’d like to learn more about the Labour party their website is here.
  • To join the Labour Party click here.



  • Benefits Information: Here’s an excellent site that allows you to find out exactly what benefits you are eligible to claim: EntitledTo
  • Housing: please contact your City Council
  • Problems with benefits or the Child Support Agency? The Citizens Advice Bureau and the Nottingham Welfare Rights Service can give advice. Remember to have your National Insurance number handy if you make an inquiry.
  • Local schools / education matters: please contact your City Council.
  • Employment rights: see Citizens Advice Bureau or the Trades Union Congress for info.
  • Social services, environmental health, noise nuisance, parking, and Council Tax should all be addressed to the City Council.
  • Another useful website on public services is


  • For the main Parliamentary website click here and to explore the Parliamentary education site click here.

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