Earlier this week I was knocking on doors in Walney doing some canvassing. One homeowner on Ocean Road politely listened to my questions and responded by saying that “there’s too much politics going on at the moment.” It’s hard to disagree.
That said, we’re leaning into a constitutional crisis - with the courts being brought into parliamentary business, and parliament refusing to act rationally. At stake is not just Brexit, but democracy itself. If we don’t respect the result of the EU referendum, and the general election that followed, I fear that the consequences for our country and democracy will be grave.
That’s why I believe the PM is right to give laser-focus to getting us out of the EU by the end of next month. We have to get on and past it, in order to forge a positive future for the country and get back to focussing on the matters which impact families across Furness every single day.
Closer to home, we’ve seen a bumper month of good news for our local area. Barrow has been successful in its bid to Historic England to help restore Duke Street to its former glory, and has also been shortlisted in the Future High Streets Fund to improve and develop Dalton Road and the shopping streets off it. Full credit to the teams in the BID and Barrow Council for successfully putting those applications together.
Defence Secretary Ben Wallace has also visited Barrow, stating not just the Government’s support for the Dreadnought programme but also for our area as a whole - I’ll be working with his office and the teams from the Communities and Transport department to translate that into positive improvements across Furness.
I visited The Well in Barrow earlier today. For those that don’t know it, it’s a drug and alcohol rehabilitation centre run as a not-for-profit in Cumbria and North Lancashire. It’s an astounding place, and talking to the staff and volunteers there, it was stark what a big difference such a small team could make - to individuals’ lives, but also to the wider community, and to their users’ families and friends. There philosophy is simple and rather beautiful: “we love people until they know how to love themselves.” For many of their clients, that means literally walking them from death’s door, or a pit of addition, and turning them into advocates for abstinence and clean living. The packed room we attended spoke eloquently to their success.
Half-way up the staircase in The Well hangs a picture of Churchill. Our greatest PM once spoke about the kind of society which he wanted to build - one of aspiration but complete with a safety net though which no one would be able to fall. It strikes me that The Well is providing that, quietly and rather elegantly, in the centre of Barrow. We are very lucky to have them in our community and should support them and their aspirations.
Finally, I’d like to thank everyone who has helped delivering surveys and leaflets on behalf of the team - it’s a mammoth effort and as the weather begins to turn, I know it gets harder and harder to do. But it is really appreciated and come the next election it could make all the difference.
Thank you again.