April was been another busy month, so I’ll try and give you a flavour of what I’ve been up to.
On the 10th April I was honoured to join the prime minister when she visited Addenbrooke’s Hospital. Theresa May spoke to staff, learnt about our pioneering cancer research and treatment work and also launched a £75 million nationwide fund to improve research into innovative ways of combatting prostate cancer.
I am so proud of the hard-working, dedicated commitment of our NHS staff and the prime minister’s visit showed how important Addenbrooke’s is, not only to us locally, but also at a national level. She was briefed on the hospital’s wish to build a cancer hospital on the campus.
This would develop our world-leading reputation for cancer diagnosis and treatment and also free up valuable space for more general hospital work. Mrs May grasped the potential of the proposals and I am pleased to report suggested I discuss the proposals in more detail with her special advisor. I’ll keep you posted.
April also saw Lord O’Shaughnessy, the health minister, visit Royal Papworth Hospital. I invited him so he could hear from the world-leading experts there and see the innovative work they undertake.
Papworth is seeking sustainable funding for their DCD (donation after circulatory death) transplant programme – essentially the use of hearts which would not traditionally make the grade. Lord O’Shaughnessy left impressed and promised to follow up to see what might be possible.
And now for something completely different – and less welcome.
In the last few weeks we have seen a large number of Travellers take up residence on land on the A505 at Thriplow. Although increased powers are now available to local authorities to deal with unauthorised caravan sites, the government is reviewing the powers available and looking at what more needs to be done.
Unauthorised encampments continue to be an issue locally and I hope you can spare a few minutes to take part in the consultation – please click here for the link.
Supporting local communities is an important part of my role in South Cambridgeshire and in the last month, I have been pleased to support a number of local events and campaigns, including prize giving at the Cambourne 10k run (thank goodness they didn’t make me do it, I’d be hopeless!) and meeting with residents in Stapleford who are campaigning to see The Tree public house turned into a community asset (I have more skill here!).
If you would like more information about the Stapleford community’s efforts to create a community hub and their crowd funding efforts, please visit The Tree website.
Trains and buses
This month sees a new timetable for Great Northern trains and I know many of you contributed to the train timetable consultation last year.
The result is a new timetable from 20th May onwards which affects all Great Northern routes. Every train from every station has been changed with the intention of providing a more reliable service for passengers and increasing capacity. Details of the changes are available here.
Although I am pleased the operator listened to the majority of concerns raised by residents (and the original proposed timetable generated a lot!), there are still some services from Royston and Ashwell and Morden which require further attention. I will continue pushing for these amendments and will keep my website updated with progress.
I have also been coordinating efforts with stakeholders to ensure a viable future for the Whippet X3 service which serves Cambourne, Papworth and the surrounding area.
Working with Whippet, Royal Papworth, Astra Zeneca, Addenbrooke’s, the County Council and Greater Cambridge Partnership, I am very hopeful some kind of sustainable service to benefit everyone can be preserved. Again, I will keep you updated.
If there is anything you would like to talk to me about, I will be holding a 'by appointment' surgery at my Sawston constituency office on Friday, 18th May between 1.00 and 3.00 pm. If you would like an appointment, please give my office a call on 01223 830 087.
I will be holding my next 'drop in' surgery on the Saturday, 9th June between 11.30 am and 1.30 pm at The Plough, St Peters Street, Duxford, CB22 4RP where no appointment will be necessary.
Details of future surgeries can be found on my website – www.heidisouthcambs.co.uk Surgeries.
Looking ahead, my diary is already filling up fast. I have a further meeting with the prime minister soon to discuss modern slavery. Locally, I have meetings about local education provision, transport and visits to local schools and businesses.
I’ll be sure to share details in my next newsletter – in the meantime, if you would like to contact me, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can also phone my Westminster office on 020 7219 5091 about national issues or my constituency office on 01223 830 037 for local concerns.
See you next month!
Heidi Allen MP
82A High Street
01223 830 037
Voting record in Parliament