Remembrance is a time for personal reflection

Last week I had the honour of laying a wreath to commemorate and remember our fallen heroes on Remembrance Sunday in both Corsham and Melksham and I attended a late service on Sunday afternoon in Chippenham.

With so many modern-day demands on all our time it is really important to spend just a few minutes reflecting on the sacrifice of others and the lives which have been lost in conflict. The service at St Paul’s in Chippenham was particularly moving where local children had written their own poems based on what Remembrance Sunday meant to them. This was a moving tribute and captured perfectly the purpose of the day, one of personal reflection and contemplation.

The annual Poppy Appeal, in support of the Royal British Legion, has this year been looking for volunteers to support its fundraising in the run-up to Remembrance Sunday and I had the pleasure last week of supporting its efforts by helping to man a stall in Melksham.

The Royal British legion does so much to support our Armed Forces, both those in active service and those who have retired and their families. It was wonderful to see so many local people buying and giving to remember and commemorate our heroes. I do think it is great that this year there are ‘snap bands’ to encourage the younger generation to take part and offer thanks to those who gave their yesterday for our today.

In Parliament this week we are debating what is the most significant legislation of this generation, the EU Withdrawal Bill, which is likely to take up the majority of Parliamentary time between now and the Christmas Recess.

I receive a huge volume of correspondence on the issue of our withdrawal from the EU and debates can often seem to be becoming increasingly heated and divisive, however, I think Remembrance Sunday acts as a timely reminder that because of the sacrifice of so many men and women years ago we now enjoy the freedom to debate and disagree openly today, something we should all treasure.

Last week I also had the pleasure of attending and speaking at the Children’s Parliament at Hardenhuish School in Chippenham. This was a fantastic event and showed just how engaged the children are, both with the political system and with current affairs and issues. This week is of course Parliament Week and as MPs we have a duty to encourage political engagement amongst all in society. I will be attending similar events in two other schools in the coming week to celebrate this and to answer questions on my role as MP and on the many complex dimensions of the UK parliament and its processes.

As always if you have any issues you would like to raise in person with me or anything I can support you with then please do book an appointment to see me in one of my surgeries across the constituency. You can contact my office on 01249 704465 or email me direct on michelle.donelan.mp@parliament.uk and I would love to hear from you. Due to high demand I have been running an increased number of surgeries recently and so additional locations have been added and I would love to meet as many people as possible.