My Week

Last Thursday evening I attended Fulking's parish council meeting, where we discussed issues such as travellers, the national park, planning and fracking.  I am looking forward to joining Pulborough Parish Council's meeting this Thursday evening.

On Friday I met with fellow West Sussex MPs and local council leaders to discuss the much-needed upgrade of the A27.  I reiterated my view that we need a strong, concerted campaign to make the case for an Arundel by-pass and improvements at Worthing.

I am very pleased that this was agreed, and that an A27 campaign will now be launched, bringing together local councils, MPs and businesses.

Later, I visited Slindon Forge to celebrate the first anniversary of this fantastic community shop and cafe, and see a new information point which the National Trust has helped to install there.

In the evening I attended an enjoyable event at the new Arundel Museum in aid of the Snowdrop Trust.  This wonderful local charity, founded 20 years ago, provides care at home for children who have a life-threatening illness or who may be terminally ill.

The co-founder and chairman of the Trust, Di Levantine, works tirelessly with her team of volunteers, and like so many important local charities they rely on donations to keep them going.

This Friday, I will be holding surgeries and local meetings as usual, and in the evening I will be calling in to the flower festival at Keymer Church Hall before speaking at a meeting at the Adastra Hall about the proposed Mayfields new town between Henfield and Sayers Common.

Nicholas Soames, the MP for Mid-Sussex, and I will re-state our view that this proposal for 10,000 houses in open countryside is a bad idea which is undermining local councils.

I will have another opportunity to raise local concerns about planning when I speak in a Commons debate which I have called on the issue next Thursday.

On Saturday morning I am looking forward to the Arundel Food Festival, which runs for the whole week, but with a lot of great events to kick it off this weekend.

After that I will be visiting Lodge Hill to open their new kart track, which has been funded by the County Council's 'Short Breaks' programme, enabling the purchase of three all-terrain vehicles which are especially suitable for children and young people.

Christopher N Howarth