This has been a very different run up to Christmas from usual. So this is going to be a rather different Christmas message from the ones I usually write for the Mercury. After all, the last time we had a General Election in December was 109 years ago.
So I would like to include in this message a thank you, an announcement, and a personal apology.
Firstly, I would like to thank the 34,844 residents in the Lichfield Parliamentary constituency (which, of course, includes Burntwood and all the surrounding villages) who decided to put their cross by my name in the General Election. You represented 64.5% of all those who voted. My heartfelt thanks!
Secondly, I would like to say that I am not ‘the Conservative MP’ for our area, but the MP for our area. Regardless of your party affiliation, I am here to help if you have a problem. But, as I said at the hustings held in Wade Street Church on the Monday before the election: the House of Commons has a ferocious spam filter so please do not attempt to email me direct. Your email may be lost. Always use the webform here or you can write to me at the House of Commons, London SW1A 0AA.
My job is to serve you all – regardless of Party.
Although the five rough sleepers in Lichfield District are visible, there are others who are homeless sleeping on friends’ couches and elsewhere. We have neighbours who may be cold or lonely over the Christmas period. Try and think of them and do something to make their Christmas more enjoyable.
And thirdly, my personal apology.
Like so many others, I usually send a multitude of Christmas cards at around this time to my friends. Because of the election, I have had no time to write them (and I am not allowed to send House of Commons cards when Parliament is dissolved) and the run up to Christmas will be busy in Parliament preparing for Brexit and other legislation. So my apologies: No cards from me this year. I hope I will be forgiven. But thank you to everyone who have sent me cards!
And finally, all that remains is to wish all Mercury readers – including all the candidates who stood in the Lichfield constituency election – a very Merry Christmas and a healthy and happy New Year!