212018Dec

Weekly Column 20.12.18

I was honoured to attend the official opening of the new Wiltshire Air Ambulance base in Semington. It was opened by Her Royal Highness, the Duchess of Cornwall. The charity does such amazing work every day and saves so many local lives. With more space the new base will also be used to help involve the local community more and I am proud to have it in the constituency. It has brought together the helicopter, operational, fundraising and administrative teams onto one site and on land the charity owns for the first time, securing its future. The ceremony was extremely well attended, highlighting the local support and appreciation that Wiltshire people have.

In other news, well done to Bradford Town YFC on receiving a £4,400 grant from the Premier League & FA Facilities fund. It’s fantastic news and I look forward to seeing the new goalposts and floodlights.

It was also lovely to attend the community carols at Sheldon Road Methodist Church in Chippenham. The event was truly a great afternoon as well as a welcome break from Brexit! The community event got people together with carols by pupils from Ivy Lane School and the Allsorts choir. Community is part of the church’s vision, which is why the Beacon Centre was built for all the community to use.

Christmas is a time that can be very stressful and put a lot of pressure on families and escalate mental health problems. It can also leave many feeling lonely and isolated. Christmas should be a time when everyone is able to share in the festive spirit and so whilst I wish all residents a very Merry Christmas, my first thoughts always go to those who are lonely or vulnerable at this time of year.

Here are some useful points of contact for support – Samaritans (01225 460888), Wiltshire MIND (01225 706532), Wiltshire Age UK (01380 727767), Alcoholics Anonymous (0800 9177 650), AWP crisis team (mental health emergency) 01225 362700, Doorway (01249 445385), Shelter (0808 800 4444) and Crisis (0300 636 1967).

I have a number of surgeries coming up across the constituency in January. If you would like an appointment please call 01249 704465 or email michelle.donelan.mp@parliament.uk.