Since the news broke that several of Cornwall’s leisure centres were under threat, fellow Cornish MPs and I have been making the case to GLL and Cornwall Council both in public and private, meeting with members of both Launceston and Wadebridge Town Councils and their Cornwall Councillors at County Hall. I have made it quite clear to the Cabinet Member and Council Officer responsible for leisure centres that my constituents want their centres to stay open and my colleagues and I in Parliament are working with all stakeholders to ensure the leisure centres are accessible for the community. I have also had a meeting with Swim England to get a better understanding of the bigger picture. Ultimately, the contract to outsource the leisure centres to GLL was put in place by the previous Cornwall Council administration run by the Lib-Dems and Independents, and the current Conservative-led administration is somewhat constrained by what has already been signed. I am of the view that the contract was terribly put together and has too many “get out of jail” clauses in it, which is what GLL are using to try and remove these loss-making leisure centres from their books. With enough support from everyone involved, hopefully, it will be possible to safeguard Cornwall’s leisure centres for the long term.
I recently had the pleasure to visit Stoke Climsland Primary School and Altarnun Primary School as part of UK Parliament Week. At both schools, I spoke about my role as an MP, what elements the job includes, my daily responsibilities and how parliament can function to the benefit of our community. Following the talks, I answered questions from the students ranging from issues revolving around how a Parliamentary law is made to my favourite football team, Plymouth Argyle of course! A group of Year 6 students at Stoke Climsland Primary school also asked me a number of no political questions (although some people may disagree as I was asked if pineapple should be a pizza topping or not) for one of their regular podcasts. I also had the privilege to visit a local business in Launceston, TFP Hydrogen. They manufacture and develop essential materials to reduce the cost of green hydrogen production, a key element of our net-zero ambition. The visit was even more special as I was able to congratulate the team at TFP Hydrogen on their recent awards with the latest one being received only the night before the visit.
Before I sign off, I would like to thank Devon and Cornwall Police for their support not only for me but for all members of parliament and their staff since the murder of David Amess.