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Gloria De Piero's Maiden Speech

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Welcome

Latest News

MP trials new iPads and tabelts at launch of The Tin Hat Centre's new tech suite

September 12th 2014

Local MP Gloria De Piero got to grips with the latest gadgets at the launch event of The Tin Hat Centre’s state of the art ‘Flexible, Rural, Advanced Technology Suite’ yesterday afternoon.

Ms De Piero has always been a vocal supporter of the popular community centre on Chapel Road, Selston, and she was keen to check out the brand new facilities available to residents as a result of a successful funding bid to the ‘Awards for All’ programme.

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Gloria's annual expenses

September 11th 2014

MPs annual expense claims have been published by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA).

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Gloria writes for the Chad

September 10th 2014

CONGRATULATIONS – Regular readers of my column will remember Kirkby lad Joseph Vanaman, who was due to compete at the Disabled Golf British Open but wasn’t allowed to enter the tournament because the European Disabled Golf Association didn’t recognise his disability. After Joseph’s father got in touch, I helped put pressure on the organisation and asked them to reconsider which they did. Well the news gets even better - Joseph has returned to Kirkby victorious with trophy in hand after an incredibly tense two day competition down in Suffolk. Ashfield already boasts its fair share of sporting heroes from Cricket legend Harold Larwood to swimmers Sam and Ollie Hynd and now Joseph Vanaman’s name can be added to the list. Well done Joseph.

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Ashfield MP votes against the hated Bedroom Tax

September 9th 2014

Last week Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero voted against the Bedroom Tax during a debate in Parliament.
 
Over the last few weeks the MP has been inundated with emails and letters from angry residents opposed to this policy.

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Gloria labels her jobs fair a huge success

September 5th 2014

Labour MP Gloria De Piero hosted one of the largest jobs fairs the local area has seen– with over 300 people rushing through the doors in just the first hour to grab a job.

The Ashfield MP pledged to tackle unemployment across the constituency by hosting a huge jobs fair for local people which saw almost 50 big-name businesses and organisations signed up with over 500 vacancies and apprenticeships on offer on the day.

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Gloria writes for the Chad & Eastwood Advertiser

September 3rd 2014

LOOKING FOR A JOB – then look no further than my jobs fair at the Festival Hall in Kirkby this Friday (5th September) between 10am-3pm. It doesn’t matter whether you are out of work or perhaps just fancy a fresh start or career change because I’ve got all bases covered. There will be some great local companies that have tonnes of vacancies up for grabs. With the number of adults aged 25 and over and out of work for more than two years rocketing by 325 per cent and the number of youngsters signing on for longer than 12 months up by a third in Ashfield since the last election it shows why action is needed.

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Gloria to join hundreds as they set off on NHS march through Ashfield

August 28th 2014

Local MP Gloria De Piero will stand side by side with hundreds of protestors as they set off from King’s Mill Hospital and march through Ashfield in a fight for the NHS.  

The protest is being led by a group of mums from Darlington who are angry about the the Government’s attempts to privatise parts of the National Health Service.

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Gloria De Piero writes for the Chad

August 27th 2014

When things go wrong at home its such a headache. One lady from Kirkby got in touch to tell me about the problems she’s been having since her boiler conked out. She went to stay with friends for two nights while it was being fixed and when she returned she found a large amount of black soot over her walls and furnishings. Metropolitan Housing organised for an engineer to make some minor repairs and passed the boiler as safe. However, she was so concerned she asked the council’s environmental health team to check it out. Low and behold they condemned it immediately but despite her best efforts, including paying for a cleaner, her house was still covered with soot marks. I got on to Metropolitan and they have now agreed to sort it out by arranging for a decorator to carry out the work to her satisfaction. I'm glad i was able to help.

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Gloria De Piero set to huge host jobs fair

August 21st 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has pledged to tackle unemployment in the area by hosting a huge jobs fair in the constituency on Friday 5th September and so far almost 50 big-name businesses and organisations have already signed up to reserve a stand.

Gloria’s jobs fair is shaping up to be one of the largest held in the area in recent years and the MP has admitted that she has been blown away by the response so far. Employers and jobseekers will be brought together at the Festival Hall in Kirkby between 10am-3pm and Severn Trent, E-On, Next and Ikea will be just some of major firms showcasing what jobs are on offer to local folk.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

August 20th 2014

Many of you tell me that you have real concerns about the impact of immigration and I agree it’s time certain rules are toughened up. I’m calling for changes so new migrants can’t claim benefits for the first six months. We should also stop people sending child benefit and tax credits to pay for kids who do not live in the UK. I also want to see a ban on agencies and employers advertising jobs solely abroad. We should double the fine on employers who flout minimum wage laws too. Non EU Immigration needs to be controlled better too with people counted in and out and a crackdown on illegal immigrants by reintroducing finger print checks and closing the loopholes on short-term student visitor visas. Every firm that hires from outside the EU should have to train up a UK apprenticeship so we are developing the skills here rather than just recruiting from overseas. And finally it should be a requirement for all publicly funded, public facing workers to speak English. So when people claim we can’t do anything about immigration, we can and these changes would help make it fairer for people in Ashfield and for fair to those who do come over here.

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Thousands in Ashfield face a struggle to see GP

August 19th 2014

Shock new figures from an official NHS survey have revealed that more than 27,000 people in Ashfield and Mansfield have had to wait more than a week to see a GP in the past year.

Across the area covered by Mansfield and Ashfield Clinical Commissioning Group, around one in six people said they were forced to wait at least seven days when they phoned for an appointment in the last year according to a NHS England CCG Report.

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MP checks on new Kirkby parking restrictions following residents' road safety concerns

August 15th 2014

Gloria De Piero visited the junction on Lindley’s Lane, Kirkby-in-Ashfield, to check on the newly installed double yellow line road markings following a number of residents’ concerns over road safety.

James Townsend of Bennet Drive, first flagged up the issue with highways bosses at Nottinghamshire County Council over a year ago but it wasn’t until he turned to Gloria for help that progress moved more quickly and much to his relief the work was finally completed last week.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

August 13th 2014

The true scale of the mis-selling of Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) has been enormous and if you haven’t been personally affected than i bet you know someone who has. It’s estimated that victims could be due a combined £9bn and as a result the financial ombudsman recently revealed it’s dealing with up to 5,000 new complaints a week. I’m continuing to take up lots of cases on the behalf of local folk BUT there’s no need to be tempted by one of those annoying phone calls – come and see me instead. I’ve just helped one man from Selston with his complaint after he kept getting knocked back by HSBC. In fact it’s fair to say he was treated pretty shoddily. With my help he went to the ombudsman and low and behold they awarded in his favour, meaning his bank has to pay his premiums back plus interest. Result.

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Ashfield MP backs plans to cut long-term unemployment

August 12th 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria de Piero has backed plans that would see long-term unemployed youngsters forced to take or job or face losing their benefits.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

August 8th 2014

The lovely head teacher at Brookhill Leys School emailed me to share a video of the Y6 farewell assembly. I even manage to make a cameo appearance in it. Mrs Sainsbury couldn’t speak highly enough of the kids and called them an “inspiration”. You can check out the video here http://vimeo.com/101342529

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Gloria writes for the Chad

August 6th 2014

The school holidays are in full swing and mums and dads will really be feeling the high cost of childcare. To make matters worse many parents tell me that the availability of childcare is plummeting which means trying to balance work and family life in the holidays is a struggle. New figures show that in the space of just four years the cost of childcare has spiralled upwards of 50 per cent – a whopping thirteen times faster than wages. That’s why I want to see an increase in free childcare for working parents with three and four year olds from 15-25 hours a week – worth £1,500 per child. It would be a real boost to parents struggling to pay for childcare throughout the year.

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Gloria: Government's British Business Bank is short changing businesses in Ashfield

August 1st 2014

Labour MP Gloria De Piero has uncovered new figures that show Ashfield’s small and medium sized businesses (SMEs) are being short changed by the Government’s own flagship British Business Bank when it comes to securing financial backing.

Gloria obtained the information after tabling a parliamentary written question asking how many businesses in Ashfield and Nottinghamshire had applied for and been granted loans by the British Business Bank compared to the rest of the country. The MP for Ashfield has visited numerous local firms over the last couple of years and has been struck by just how many business leaders have told her it is still a struggle to access cash despite Ministers claiming otherwise.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

July 30th 2014

John Vanaman from Kirkby wrote to me a few weeks ago after his son Joseph, aged 20, was told he wouldn’t be allowed to compete in the forthcoming disabled golf open because of a European Disabled Golf Association ruling which didn’t recognise Autism. I immediately pressed the president of the organisation and lobbied for a change in the rules but was disappointed with the initial response– but then they performed a remarkable U-turn. John’s dad told me this week that learning difficulties have now been recognised and as a result Joseph can now look forward to competing at the Disabled Golf British Open over August 28th & 29th. He’s goes with one major result in the bag and I’ll certainly be rooting for him as he looks to bring the trophy back to Kirkby. Come on Joseph!

WARNING – I’ve just received a tip off about a dodgy company pretending to be from Age UK calling on pensioners and claiming to have a special adviser in the area who can pop round and carry out a full financial check in order to help avoid paying any future care home fees. There’s the old adage that if something sounds too good to be true then it's usually because it is. If you do spot anything suspicious then contact the police and my office straight away. What’s more, if you have fallen prey to con artists like these please don’t be embarrassed to come forward. Help will always be on hand.

Finally regular readers of the Chad will know that in recent months residents of Alfred Street, in Kirkby, have been fighting a long running battle with a couple of neighbours from hell. It’s no exaggeration to say these yobs made a number of families lives a misery during their reign of terror on the street. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again - I’ll never tolerate anti-social behaviour in Ashfield and neither should anyone else. It might have taken longer than anyone involved in the case would have liked but I’m absolutely delighted to say that those responsible have been kicked out once and for all. It’s a victory for common decency.

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Ashfield MP warns of mental health postcode lottery amid rise in people seeking treatment

July 25th 2014

Patients in Ashfield are bearing the brunt of an alarming postcode lottery in mental health services as the number of patients in Ashfield rise, new NHS figures reveal.

The local data obtained by Gloria shows that Mansfield and Ashfield Clinical Commissioning Group spent 9.35% of its budget on mental health services last year, despite 14.1% of the local population having a mental health condition.

In addition to this, figures show that in Ashfield, the number of people seeking treatment for mental health problems rose by 16.6%, as the number of people in Nottinghamshire as a whole dropped by 33%.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

July 23rd 2014

Last week I had the pleasure of meeting three amazing women - Maria, Michelle and Rachel, who help run Patches Heart Group in Sutton, which offers parent to parent support to families of children who have heart conditions. The stress and worry of having a child with a serious heart condition is something that no parent wants want to deal with alone. Yet mum Maria Linfield found that help was not immediately on hand and decided to take action into her own hands by setting up a support group and it’s been a godsend to families across Britain ever since. The three women are real community champions and I was so impressed by all that they do to help others. Patches operates out of the Ashfield Voluntary Action office on Fox Street and there's a 24 hour helpline too on 07960868843. Help spread the word.

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MP warns ambulance delays are putting lives at risk

July 22nd 2014

New figures obtained by Ms De Piero’s office show that EMAS is the worst performing service in the country at responding to category A call outs – which includes cardiac arrests and stroke patients - taking 489 seconds to respond. Commenting, the Ashfield MP said; “EMAS need to get their house in order and quickly, because what is happening right now is simply not acceptable. Nationally ambulances are arriving at category A calls a minute later than they were three years ago, at EMAS that figure is 2.3 minutes. This increased time can be the difference between life and death and it makes me very angry.”

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Gloria writes for the Chad

July 16th 2014

Far too many people from privileged backgrounds work for MPs so I try to offer as many work experience placements to youngsters from Ashfield as I can. Sam Voisey, Paige Amos, Jade Keeling have all gained valuable experience over the last year and in the summer Alice Bates and Joe Parker will follow in their footsteps. I’ve just had a great lad from Quarrydale called William Booth spend a week in the constituency office at the recommendation of his excellent head teacher, Jon Crone. Will is really smart and his favourite subject is maths and when I asked him what he wants to do when he leaves school he said 'be an MP'. Good on you Will. Politics needs people like you.

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Gloria welcomes E-ON’s new Annesley apprentices

July 15th 2014

Last Friday, Gloria visited energy company E-ON’s Annesley offices and welcomed a new batch of apprentices as they completed their first full week on the job.

The firm is a major employer in the area and has recently recruited 15 youngsters to take up positions on a customer service apprenticeship scheme which is aimed at young people between 16-24 years old who are about to leave school or college, or currently not in education, employment or training.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

July 11th 2014

I was left flabbergasted by the behaviour of one ‘dad’, and I apply that term very loosely. His ex-partner has been completely worn down by his antics to avoid paying child maintenance. This absent father had just given his 26th 'change of circumstances', which is utterly ridiculous and means that the Child Support Agency (CSA) have to reassess him which can take anything up to three months to agree a new figure. He’ll then pay once or twice if his kids are lucky before doing the same thing over again. The mum reckons she’s spent more on phone calls to the CSA in the last six months than she has had from him in maintenance payments. He needs to take a long hard look at himself and pull his finger out and the CSA must clamp down on this sort of behaviour. It’s scandalous.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

July 9th 2014

Last week I had the pleasure of officially opening the new headquarters of Van Elle in Kirkby. They are the largest independent piling contractors in the UK and their new facilities were mightily impressive. But we need more successful businesses like them and we need more entrepreneurs Sophie Aspinall and Luke Davies who set up the Ashfield Technology shop and Vicky Mercer who runs Upper Cut Hair & Beauty Salon in Stanton Hill.

I’d like to see Ministers doing more to help at when average businesses have seen rates go up on by £1,500, so I’m campaigning to cut small business rates in 2015 and freezing them again in 2016 rather than going ahead with the Government’s corporation tax cut for the largest firms in the country.

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Gloria lends her support to the FareShare campaign at Sutton Tesco

July 7th 2014

Last Friday Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero joined hard working staff and community spirited customers at the Tesco Express Store in Sutton to donate a number of items of food as part of the ‘Neighbourhood Food Collection’ campaign in conjunction with the Trussell Trust and Fareshare.

By the time Gloria arrived at the local store on Alfreton Road the large collection point at the front of the store was almost overflowing thanks to the generosity of the store’s customers. The MP was greeted by store manager, Dot Ball, who was on hand to tell Gloria more about the collections and bosses at the store have since revealed that they have filled two large collection bins with all sorts of tins, pasta, biscuits and other goods with a long shelf life.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

July 2nd 2014

I was shocked when health bosses contacted me following an investigation into the former Pantiles Medical Centre which found that details on childhood vaccinations for around 50 Sutton kids have gone missing. I’d be furious! I’ve already been in touch with the NHS to get raise my own concerns and attempt to get to the bottom of this and I’ll keep any parent who gets in touch in the loop of the information I get.

HMRC have been up to their old tricks again by hounding a poor bloke from Sutton for over two years for unpaid income tax, over £4,000 and which turned out to be completely wrong. Having the taxman on your back would give most people sleepless nights especially when you were being chased for such a large sum of money. When I looked into the case, not only did he not owe a penny, HMRC actually owed him cash, £800 to be precise because of a tax OVERPAYMENT. Incredible. I’m pleased to say that not only is he now sleeping better, but he'll also be financially better off when he receives a cheque as compensation.

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Gloria backs residents' fight for Kirkby Road post box

July 1st 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has backed Sutton residents in their fight to get Royal Mail to reinstall a popular post box on Kirkby Road after it was taken out of a service a few weeks ago.

The post box is located right outside a retirement complex and the Ocean Blue Fish Bar and local business owner, Andrew Georgiou, who runs the chip shop is leading the fight back. In just a short space of time since the post box was blocked up, over 200 local folk have signed a petition demanding that it is returned to service immediately.

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MP officially opens Kirkby headquarters of the UK's largest independent piling contractor

June 30th 2014

Last Friday (27th June) Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero officially opened new offices and manufacturing facilities of one of the biggest names in ground engineering, Van Elle, after the firm completed the redevelopment of a major site in the heart of the Kirkby.

Last year Gloria visited the firm’s head office in Pinxton where bosses revealed a number of exciting plans, including the development of the old Charcon Tunnels and Tarmac industrial site on Summit Close, Kirkby. After investing over £1.5m, the development is now complete and includes brand new offices, a production facility and workshops which will help regenerate the area and lay the foundations for further growth.

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Women in Ashfield miss out as shock new figures reveal how the gender pay gap has grown

June 27th 2014

Forty four years after Labour Passed the Equal Pay Act, new analysis of ONS (Office for National Statistics) figures has revealed that women living Ashfield still earn on average just 81.5p for every pound earned by men.

The median pay gap between male and female employees in Ashfield by hourly earnings, excluding overtime, was 18.5 per cent, while the stats show that women’s median hourly earnings in the constituency was £8.39 compared to men who earn £10.29.

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Gloria praises Eastwood girl who has hair cut off for charity

June 26th 2014

Local MP Gloria De Piero has heaped praise on an Eastwood school girl who has raised over £500 for charity after having her long blonde locks shorn off last Friday (20th June) at Style 2000 on Nottingham Road.

Spring Bank Primary School pupil, Phoebe Bradley, aged 11, decided to have her waist length hair cut off right to the shoulders in order to raise cash and help send poorly children to Lapland to meet Santa Clause at Christmas time.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

June 25th 2014

Last week I voted for the introduction of a minimum six month jail sentence for repeat offenders of knife crime. I know one man from Ashfield who suffered terrible injuries as a result of one such attack. We need to send a strong message that carrying a knife is wrong so I found it unbelievable that the tough new sentences were opposed by ministers and their partners in Government, the Lib Dems. Luckily common sense prevailed and the vote scraped through because of the support from Labour MPs.

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Gloria blasts Government as King's Mill Hospital faces financial squeeze

June 24th 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has accused the Government of losing control of NHS finances as reports indicate that Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is now £17.91 million in the red.

The figures, obtained from Monitor, the Trust Development Authority and the House of Commons Library, show NHS finances have gone backwards in every English region since the General Election.

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MP warns that new taxi and minicab laws could put passengers in Ashfield at risk

June 23rd 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero is opposing changes to taxi and private hire vehicle law because of concerns they could put passengers inAshfieldat risk. The reforms are included in the Government’s Deregulation Bill which will be voted on by MPs today.

The Government’s proposed reforms to the taxi and minicab trade will enable people without a minicab license drive one when it is “off duty”, end annual checks on drivers’ licences, and allow minicab operators to subcontract bookings to firms in other areas.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

June 18th 2014

The World Cup is well underway and I know lots of you will be glued to your television sets over the next few weeks following every pass, dribble, shot and goal. Let's remember that it’s grassroots football where all of the superstars first started kicking a ball about. Last week, the coach of newly created Quarrydale Under 12s got in touch with me to see if anyone in the community might be willing to support them and help kit out the young lads. They are a close bunch from Kirkby and Sutton and they play every Saturday and Sunday and are really desperate for a new kit and equipment. If anyone in the area thinks they might be able to help, drop Neil an e-mail on neiljbrown@yahoo.co.uk. You never know you could be backing the next Wayne Rooney.

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Gloria and Council Leader present Fair Deal for local services petition to Downing Street

June 16th 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero and Nottinghamshire County Council Leader Alan Rhodes delivered a petition to 10 Downing Street calling on the Government to rethink the size of the cuts that Nottinghamshire has faced compared to other more leafy and affluent areas.

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A-level students put MP under the spotlight

June 15th 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has been quizzed by students at West Nottinghamshire College about politics and the representation of women in the media.

A-Level students Michael Breen, 16, and Charlotte Swindells, 17, secured an interview with the Shadow Minister for Women and Equalities as part of a project focussing on increasing youth engagement in politics.

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MP welcomes Framework's anti-social behaviour action plan

June 14th 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has joined forces with the police and other local organisations, including Framework, in an effort to rid a Sutton Street of anti-social behaviour.

The local MP met with a group of fed up residents outside their homes after they were forced to turn to Gloria for help in an attempt to stop the behaviour which they say has plagued the street in recent months.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

June 13th 2014

I popped into Style 2000 - my local hairdressers the other day - and as I handed over a tip to Amy, she told me that all the team had been handing over their tips the last few weeks to raise money for Jay Martin & Hayley Ruddy who are regular customers and whose son, little Joey, has leukaemia. They will soon have a fundraising page up and running but if you’d like to donate, Style 2000 already have a tin so why not pop in. The money raised will go towards little Joey and the kids on ward E37 at the QMC.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

June 11th 2014

Over the past couple of weeks I’ve been inundated with emails, phone calls and tweets from desperate Ashfield folk who have had problems getting their passports in time for travel. Despite following the guidelines to a tee and submitting applications in good time for processing and in some cases even paying for the fast check service at the Post Office they’ve faced totally unacceptable delays and have faced the prospect of not being able to travel at all. Getting everything ready to go away can be stressful enough at the best of times, especially if you’ve got young ones to look after so Government Ministers really need to get a grip before this chaos that ruins the summer holidays. The latest case I’ve dealt with was far too close for comfort with a mum from Sutton who only got the passport back on the day of travel - and that's only because I got involved! If you’ve got a similar problem pick up the phone and give my office a call and we’ll do our best to make it as stress free as possible. I’ll do the nagging so you don’t have to.

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Ashfield School pupils grill local MP

June 9th 2014

Last Friday local MP Gloria De Piero was put through her paces by a bunch of enthusiastic students from Ashfield School when she faced a series of hard hitting questions the youngsters put together as part of their work looking at the Parliamentary system.

Almost twenty pupils from Year 7 honed their interviewing techniques when they quizzed the Labour MP and shadow women & equalities minister on a wide variety of topics, both local and national, in an attempt to find out more about her day to day life as a busy MP.

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MP visits local patients and staff at City Hospital's chemotherapy suite

June 6th 2014

Locall MP Gloria De Piero visited the chemotherapy suite at the City Hospital site of Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust to meet patients, many of whom are constituents, as well as chatting to staff at the site.

Gloria was asked to visit the department a few weeks ago by Brinsley lady Janet Enever, who lives in the MP’s constituency and who is currently undergoing chemotherapy at the hospital. Mrs Enever wanted her MP to see firsthand the brilliant work all of the doctors, nurses and NHS staff do to help and support patients with cancer.

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Local heroes honoured in Parliament by Labour leader Ed Miliband

June 5th 2014

Yesterday evening (4th June) Gloria De Piero welcomed some of Ashfield’s very own local heroes to Westminster at a special reception hosted by the Leader of the Labour Party, Ed Miliband, to honour the achievements of unsung people from across the UK.
 
The event was put on to shine a spotlight on some of the fantastic heroes in communities up and down the country and Gloria was keen to ensure that some of the people who have really made their mark on Ashfield were recognised on the night. Gloria introduced Jon Crone, head teacher at Quarrydale Academy, Carol Rigby from Westwood and Michelle Noble and her law student daughter Jessie from Sutton to Ed Miliband who was really struck by each of their stories.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

June 4th 2014

I’m busy organising a jobs fair because I’m so concerned that long-term unemployment in Ashfield has shot up by 40% since May 2010, while the number of adults out of work longer than 2 years is up by a shocking 350%. But rather than just being angry I decided to do something about it. I know there’s no shortage of talent here which is why I’ve called companies like E-on, Caunton Engineering and Severn Trent and asked them if they’ll come along and take part and recruit locally. If you or your kids would benefit from this event then pencil the 5th September in your diary now. It will be held from 10am to 3pm at the Festival Hall in Kirkby and more details will follow soon.

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Gloria backs stronger minimum wage to help people in Ashfield

June 2nd 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has backed Labour’s plans to strengthen the national minimum wage to ensure that people in Ashfield who do a hard day’s work are rewarded for doing so.

Those on the lowest pay are at the sharpest end of the cost-of-living crisis. Families are on average £1,600 a year worse off since David Cameron became Prime Minister and the value of the national minimum wage has declined by five per cent over the same period.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

May 28th 2014

I’m sure Chad readers will have noticed that it’s becoming harder and harder to get a GP appointment. I’ve had unhappy constituents getting in touch with me to make this exact point, after all, when you are ill or your little one is coming down with a temperature you just want to get it sorted. If people need that reassurance and can't get an appointment, they sometimes turn up at King’s Mill which puts pressure on A&E services. I'm calling on the Government to guarantee that people in Ashfield get a GP appointment within 48 hours and for those patients who feel their problem requires immediate attention, there should be at least a phone call with a nurse or doctor and if it’s urgent, a face to face appointment on the same day.

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Gloria puts school dinners to the taste test at Kirkby Woodhouse Primary

May 23rd 2014

Gloria joined kids at Kirkby Woodhouse Primary on 22nd May as they tucked into their school dinners and was served up her very own tasty hot lunch-time meal.

The head teacher, Mrs Maddison, wrote to the local politician a few weeks ago to invite Gloria to the school as a special guest and on arrival Gloria was met by Jessica, Jacob and Jenny. The school on Main Road prides itself on the quality of its dinners and almost 200 children and staff enjoy them every day and the visit gave Gloria the perfect opportunity to have a chat with staff, meet the pupils and put the menu to the all important taste test.

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Eastwood MP visits booming engineering firm

May 22nd 2014

Eastwood MP Gloria De Piero visited booming local business, Caunton Engineering, to meet staff and learn more about its in house apprentice training academy and bosses also revealed more about exciting plans for the future.

The visit also included a guided tour of the site which gave staff who are sometimes too busy the chance to meet their local MP and discuss any issues they might have.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

May 21st 2014

I get so angry when residents tell me of their suffering from anti-social behaviour. Whether its noisy and inconsiderate neighbours who need sorting out or aggressive and nasty yobs, one thing is for certain - it makes people’s lives a misery and no one has the right to do that. One retired couple from Sutton have just won a six month long battle with a neighbour, who together with a group of youths, had been terrorising them in the flat they lived in. I was absolutely delighted when I heard the news because Mr & Mrs Harvey have been to hell and back. They are a lovely couple and I’m made up that they finally have the peace and quiet they deserve and can relax in the comfort of their own home after the ringleader was evicted by Ashfield District Council. I’d like to say a big thank you to Council Leader Chris Baron and Cllr Steve Carroll, who have been instrumental in the case and without their efforts it probably wouldn’t have been possible. Cheers guys!

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Gloria helps Huthwaite residents win road restriction fight

May 20th 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero joined in the celebrations with a couple of determined residents from Huthwaite when she checked out newly installed weight restriction road signs which have just been installed along Chesterfield Road in the village.

Many local folk had been campaigning for years to get Nottinghamshire County Council to agree to impose a weight limit along the road because of safety concerns and the problems caused by HGV Lorries travelling along the busy stretch of road at all times of the day and night.

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Kirkby catering students showcase their culinary talents to MP

May 19th 2014

Last week local MP Gloria De Piero visited one of the hospitality and catering sectors leading training providers, Charnwood Academy based at Ashfield School and met with staff, students and ex star apprentices who created a brand new dish as they performed a special culinary demonstration in front of a watching audience.

During her visit, Gloria was given a tour of the academy which boasts state of the art facilities before meeting with two recent successful apprentices. Nathan Byrne from Selston and Dan Martin of Rainworth are now chefs at The Derbyshire Hotel and they were on hand to showcase their skills to a group of Year Ten and hospitality and catering students from Ashfield School and Gloria.

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Gloria: shock new figures show more people in Ashfield need housing benefit to meet rent

May 17th 2014

Local MP Gloria De Piero has hit out at the Government and accused Ministers of failing to get to grips with the benefits bill after new stats have revealed there are now more working people relying on housing benefit in Ashfield to help pay their monthly bills than at the time of the last election.

In Ashfield alone, the number of hard working people now claiming housing benefit has increased by a staggering 94 per cent since the Conservatives and Liberal Democrat coalition came to power over four years ago.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

May 16th 2014

Every time you contact me with a problem, it matters. If it's important enough for someone to take the time to write to me, call or drop by my office then it means they have a problem which they want sorting out and it’s my job to try and do just that. Take for instance the case of a lady who wrote to me at the start of the month in the hope that I could help her on what she said was ‘her minor crusade’ to get a street light repaired outside her home on Engine Lane. She told me how she had been phoning the county council every fortnight since November last year to get it fixed but to no avail and she wasn’t the only one. Her neighbours had both complained too. She was rightly annoyed because the street she lives on is dark and is used by walkers at all times of the night, young and old and the council had more than enough time to sort this out. I shouldn’t really have to give bosses at the Highways Department a nudge but it just goes to show asking your MP to get involved really can help because this week an engineer was sent out to repair the lamp and also check on this street on his next patrol as well.

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Ashfield MP welcomes fall in unemployment but warns that young people must not be left behind

May 15th 2014

Gloria De Piero has welcomed the latest official Labour Market Statistics which show there has been an overall fall in the number of people out of work in Ashfield compared to the previous month but the local MP has warned more needs to be done to ensure the area’s young people aren’t left behind.  

The latest stats released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) reveal there was a slight drop, with 89 fewer people claiming Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) last month (April) compared to the previous month (March) when 2,034 were unemployed. Closer analysis of the stats also shows that 585 of those signing on at the Job Centre last month were young people aged 18-24 years old.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

May 14th 2014

Following hot on the heels of last week’s column and the great victory I told Chad readers about after successfully taking up one Sutton’s man case with the taxman, two more results have swiftly followed. One was an almost identical case to last week’ and involved the familiar story of HMRC hounding a Sutton family for an overpayment of tax credits which they had incorrectly calculated. Low and behold HMRC eventually backed down and also awarded the family compensation.

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Gloria wins decisive victory for Sutton OAPs in housing battle

May 12th 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has won a decisive victory for a group of Sutton pensioners who had been locked in a battle with a housing association after originally being told that they would have to move out of their homes.

The pensioners, who live at Sherwood House Flats, just off Willowbridge Lane, were left devastated and upset at the prospect of losing their homes when the owners announced plans to close down the 30 bedroom retirement complex last June because the flats were in need of investment and couldn’t offer any assurances on their future.

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Gloria backs new childcare pledge

May 10th 2014

Children and families in Ashfield could benefit from new measures put forward by Labour this week in an attempt to ease the cost of living crisis. Childcare is one of the most expensive costs for working parents in Ashfield and childcare costs in the East Midlands are up by 16% for nursery care and 13% for childminder care.

For some families paying for childcare can be as much as having a second mortgage and childcare costs can be a major barrier to getting into work and making ends meet. At the same time, childcare places have fallen by 3,023 across the East Midlands and ministers have cut support to help make childcare affordable through tax credits for 4,900 families in the region.

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Gloria leads call to take on Ashfield's debt cowboys

May 9th 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has spoken out about the growing personal debt crisis gripping the country as new research shows 2 in 5 people are struggling to make it to payday.

Millions of people are now turning to payday lenders just to cope with the cost of living and debt repayments. In Ashfield and the rest of the region the latest research has also revealed that 39% of people have said they were in personal financial difficulty. 

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Gloria writes for the Chad

May 7th 2014

New research shows in Ashfield almost 5,500 people rent the property they live in from a private landlord. It’s gone up by a whopping 25% in the last decade. Many people face unstable short-term lets and high letting agent fees every time they move. It’s not fair and it’s time for it to stop and that’s why I want new laws to ban letting fees for tenants. I'd also like a guarantee of three year leases after a six month probation period and a cap on rent rises. Generation rent has been ignored for too long but there is a solution and it’s time to take action and deliver a fairer deal.

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Gloria celebrates opening of new community cafe in Sutton

April 25th 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero joined staff, learners and key partners at a Sutton college to celebrate the official opening of a new café which is serving delicious homemade and affordable food right in the heart of the local community.

The A.T.T.I.C Café occupies what was once a disused youth centre, fondly known as ‘The Bunker’ area at Sutton Community Academy. Former Assistant Head and now Governor, Mary Rutter, is behind the name which is derived from the Academy Transformation Trust (ATT), and combines it with one of the college’s core values of being In (the) Community.

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Gloria raises a toast to the Fountain Bridge

April 24th 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero joined local publican, Michael Perry at The Fountain Bridge in Sutton-in-Ashfield to find out how he and his partners have turned around the pub’s fortunes. Since taking it on just over a year ago, they have made it one of the most successful pubs in the area.

Trade had tailed off at the pub, but thanks to their hard work and a complete refurbishment of the interior and exterior of the pub on the back of £245K investment from Star Pubs & Bars, Heineken’s pub division, Michael and his partners were able to put the Fountain Bridge on the map and achieve their first year business targets three months early.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

April 23rd 2014

We have some fantastic businesses across our region and Sutton firm Crystal Martin fall right into that category. For the last three years staff have been encouraged to donate Easter eggs which are then handed out to different charities and organisations in the area. This year they’ve gone past the 1,000 mark after a bumper collection brought in over 300 eggs. It’s a really lovely gesture and one that I know goes down a treat with those on the receiving end of the donations.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

April 18th 2014

Are you struggling with transport to work? I've never forgotten Jen Clarke from Underwood who came to a surgery last year to complain that a lack of rural bus services was preventing her from being able to work late and night shifts at a hotel in Nottingham she had been offered a job at. So my ears pricked up at one of my recent advice surgeries when I met local man Liam Russell who runs an organisation called Wheels to Work and behind it is a really simple but effective idea. If you’re struggling to get to work, training or college because of transport problems and live in Selston, Underwood or Brinsley then they could have just the solution for you. They offer a Moped loan service for up to 6 months for people aged over 16 who live in Nottinghamshire. To find out more contact wheelstowork@rcan.org.uk

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Gloria writes for the Chad

April 16th 2014

This month marked the one year anniversary of the introduction of the Bedroom tax and to mark that dubious landmark I’ve pledged it should be scrapped. I’m sure most Chad readers will have heard about it because it has hit 1,178 people in Ashfield and over half a million nationally. People care because it forces some of the most vulnerable people into more debt and into situations where they find themselves relying on food banks. Sometimes in life it is easy to see when something is right or wrong and on this occasion it couldn’t be any clearer. We can’t afford another year of this cruel and costly tax on bedrooms which is why I hope ministers hold their hands up and just admit they got this one horribly wrong.

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Ashfield MP concerned after hospital misses A&E Winter waiting time target in each of the last three years

April 15th 2014

Figures obtained by Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero have revealed Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which runs King’s Mill Hospital has missed the official A&E waiting time target at its major casualty unit during crucial winters months in each of the last three years.

The increase has come to light after Gloria asked statisticians from the House of Commons Library to monitor precisely how many patients had to wait longer than four hours to be seen in Quarter 3 and Quarter 4 in the last couple of years.

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MP's action helps pensioner get garden fence back

April 11th 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero visited the home of a Kirkby pensioner to check on the brand new fence she had successfully installed to block off an electricity substation behind the property.

Mr Duffield of Diamond Avenue originally sold off land at the bottom of his garden to the National Grid who promised that the land of the subsequent fencing would always be maintained.

However, in recent years the fence blew down in a storm and after contacting Western Power Distribution, the firm now responsible, a poor quality replacement fence was installed. This collapsed not long after being put up and the pensioner was left with the unsightly substation in full view and broken fence littering his garden.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

April 9th 2014

I recently launched the ‘Why I love Ashfield’ competition with the Chad and it’s the perfect way to show off some of the talented kids we have in the area. This month I’m handing you over to Alfie Parker, aged 11, from Hillocks. ‘Firstly there’s the library. There’s nothing like a nice book to read after a long, hard day at school to relax with. Heaven to me. Then there’s the school. While other schools are a bit boring, Hillocks is the place to be. The teachers are kind, the food is good and luckily for me, a no bullying policy. But the best bit is the friends you make. I don’t make many friends but I have tons of friends here and one is right next to me as I write, Luke, so that’s good. There’s only one word that describes Sutton. That word is …awesome!!!!!!!’

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Gloria and Police & Crime Commissioner join forces to tackle anti-social behaviour hotspot

April 7th 2014

Last Friday Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero and Paddy Tipping Nottinghamshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner joined forces and held a summit with fed up residents of Alfred Street in Kirkby and local police officers in a bid to stamp out anti-social behaviour.

Local residents turned to the MP for help after reaching the end of their tether after their lives were blighted and made a misery by crime and anti-social behaviour for months and months on end despite complaining to the police and council.

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MP officially opens new 6th Form Study Centre at Eastwood Comprehensive

April 4th 2014

Local MP Gloria De Piero joined teachers, governors and sixth formers at Eastwood Comprehensive School to cut a special red ribbon and officially open the new state of the art Sixth Form Study Centre.

As the school prepares for conversion to Academy Status it recently completed a £70,000 transformation of an area within the school and converted it into a new Sixth Form Study Centre for Post 16 students. The work took six weeks to complete and now sixth formers can benefit from a dedicated study area study area, which also boasts a modern ICT suite and a socialising hub exclusively for their use.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

April 2nd 2014

Last week I had the pleasure of visiting Morven Park Primary School and got the chance to see real community heroes in action. The Kirkby school decided to do something a little bit different for this year's Sports Relief - rather than the kids and teachers giving a few pound coins they teamed up with Kirkby Food Bank and donated a mountain of tinned food  instead– 263 of tins to be precise! It was an unbelievable effort and they inspired me too. I made a donation but I’ve also got a food bank collection point permanently in my office now thanks to Louise Webber, one of the amazing co-ordinators. Louise told me that they are always looking for more donations, so if you have any tins or boxes of breakfast cereal please feel free to pop in and help make a difference.

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Ashfield MP celebrates the re-opening of Skegby pub following major makeover

April 1st 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero visited the Rifle Volunteer Public House in Skegby to show her support to landlady Diane Wharmby who was celebrating getting it back to business following a major makeover after already transforming the pub’s fortunes.

The popular pub on Forest Road was closed for two weeks as it underwent a refurbishment worth almost £85,000 and it has now been transformed with new lightings and furnishings, an upgraded function room and most importantly of all a brand new bar.

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MP marks Mother's Day by calling for more support for families as she meets mums at the school gates

March 31st 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero marked Mother’s Day in her own way last weekend by dropping in at St Andrew’s C of E Primary School gates in Skegby on Friday afternoon to talk to mums about the issues that matter the most to them.
 
The local politician was on hand to chat with parents during the busy afternoon school run and discuss a whole host of issues and concerns that cropped up, both locally and nationally. Mums and dads were particularly scathing about the amount of dog mess on the streets in and around the school and the MP pledged to write to the council and ask that they sort the problem.

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A happy day for equality

March 30th 2014

It’s not every day you get to make history by doing something that people do every day. But today couples across England & Wales will do just that by becoming some of the first people in the UK to enter into a same sex marriage.

Opening up marriage to couples of the same sex who love each other and want to make that commitment is an important moment for equality in Britain and comes after decades of progress for LGBT people.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

March 26th 2014

THE BUDGET VERDICT - It had nothing to help get the 125 young people who have been out of work in Ashfield for more than a year back to work. It had nothing to say to the 290 adults in Ashfield who have been out of work for more than 2 years. It did nothing to improve wages for women who are now paid £26.60 less a week or the men who are paid £59.90 less a week than they were in 2010. But I think what made me most angry was the front cover of the London Evening Standard on the night of the Budget which said 'Osborne’s Budget boost for London’. London is the one place in Britain which doesn't need a boost. I won't be happy until I see a headline which says 'Budget boost for Coalfield Communities or 'Budget boost for the Midlands''..... I don't want to be too ungenerous though - I was pleased to see a penny off a pint but when you do the maths you'll see - for every 300 pints you drink, you’ll get one free.

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MP joins campaigners to see new Westwood school road safety measures

March 25th 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero visited Westwood Infants & Nursery School after being invited to see the new road safety measures by local Grandparent Carol Rigby who helped lead the successful campaign.

Concerned parents, relatives and teachers finally got their wish last month when Nottinghamshire County Council installed a new safer crossing and a barrier outside the village school amid concerns it was only a matter of time before a child was involved in a serious accident.

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Gloria visits ambitious Eastwood business which has global market firmly in its sights after winning two major contracts

March 24th 2014

Last Friday (21st March) local MP Gloria De Piero visited Eastwood based software and electronics firm, Microlise after being invited to the headquarters by the Executive Director Bob Harbey to find out more about what has been a hugely successful couple of weeks for the business.
 
When Gloria popped in bosses were able to brief her on the brilliant news that the Eastwood firm had just won two massive contracts with both Tesco and French giant, Carrefour, the world’s second largest retailer.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

March 21st 2014

Being able to make a difference, no matter how small, is why I went into this job in the first place so it was an absolute pleasure to be able to help one of Eastwood’s newer businesses. The owners of the Grand Siam Thai Restaurant on Nottingham Road were having no end of problems with their British Gas meter which then led to billing problems further down the line. Despite trying to resolve the issue amicably they just weren’t getting anywhere and it wasn’t through a lack of trying. I want our local high street to be a vibrant and thriving hub of the town so when I stepped in I made it clear just how unacceptable the situation had become. It must have worked because British Gas have since apologised for the way it had been handled and have even handed out compensation and put procedures in place to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

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Ashfield MP: This Budget proved you're worse off under this Government

March 20th 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has slammed the Government for a budget that does nothing for families in Ashfield.

The Chancellor boasted about how well things are going, but it was totally out of touch with hardworking people in Ashfield who are facing a cost-of-living crisis.

After nearly four years of the Liberal Democrats & Tories, hard-working families are on average £1,600 a year worse off and not feeling any economic recovery at all.

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Gloria: Three month rise in unemployment in Ashfield exposes Government's complacency

March 19th 2014

Labour MP Gloria De Piero has hit out at the Government after figures released today (19th March) by the Office for National Statistics have revealed that unemployment in Ashfield has risen for the third successive month in a row.

Despite an overall fall in unemployment nationally, the local politician has repeatedly warned Ministers that they couldn’t afford to be complacent when it came to unemployment in Ashfield after the constituency witnessed a worrying spike in the number of people signing on in the previous two months.

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Gloria's Chad column

March 18th 2014

I’ve been your MP for almost four years now and I’ve met so many brilliant people in all walks of life that I can honestly say that there are definitely some stars in the making. One of those is Steven Alexander, from Sutton. Like everyone else in Ashfield, I’ve been rooting for Steven as he competed for a spot in the final three of the BBC live final of The Voice and he was so unlucky to have narrowly missed out. Steven you’ve done Ashfield and your friends and family proud and as my Youtube history testifies, I’m a big fan.

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Ashfield MP urges Secretary of State for Health to plug funding gap

March 17th 2014

Following a visit last Friday (14th March) to local hospital, King’s Mill, Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has written to the Secretary of State for Health, and urged him to help the Trust which runs the hospital to plug a funding gap caused by a badly negotiated Private Finance Initiative (PFI) in 2005.

As part of a new series of quarterly meetings, Gloria met with the Chief Executive Paul O’Connor and Chair Sean Lyons to review current issues and concerns and check on the progress the hospital is making. The bosses briefed Gloria on the steady progress the Trust was making under their leadership but highlighted a cash shortfall as one of the biggest causes for concern.

The Trust’s recent financial problems have been well documented and the PFI deal which covers a whole host of new buildings, refurbishments, facilities, services, equipment and capital investment equipment costs is expected to run until March 2043. However, next year could see a funding gap of between £12m and £20.5m per year.

With the Secretary of State for Health, Jeremy Hunt, due to visit King’s Mill Hospital this week, Gloria is determined to keep the pressure up by urging the Department of Health to conclude negotiations and agree to an on-going subsidy.

Gloria said; “I’m urging Jeremy Hunt to agree a deal so that everyone at the hospital can focus on patient care instead of worrying about the financial future of the Trust.” 

During her visit last Friday, Gloria also found time to join nurses as they carried out their Care and Comfort Rounds on Ward 14. The new rounds were introduced following recommendations by an independent review.

Speaking afterwards, Gloria said; “It was obvious just how much the patients I met valued the new Care and Comfort Rounds. They couldn’t speak highly enough of the staff or the care they received and what suck with me was when one lady told me she had been beautifully looked after. Another patient called Christine told me how much of a difference it made knowing who the nurse is each day and who was looking after her and as the local MP it was so reassuring to hear.”

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Gloria writes for the Chad

March 12th 2014

I launched the ‘Why I love Ashfield’ competition with the help of the Chad and I’m going to be showcasing the best entries from kids in our local schools in my column each month. I’ve already got two winners, both from Hillocks Primary School and they are Alfie Parker, 11, and Tianey Brearley, 11. This month you can read Tianey’s and next month Alfie’s - ‘Sutton lawn is one of the many places you can go. On Sutton lawn you can feed the ducks, go fishing and take your dog for a walk. You can also go to the outside gym, play football or go skate boarding. At our library there are lots of books for you to choose from. If you have a little one you can choose one of our many children’s books and then you can take them home and read them. We even have our own radio station. How lucky are we? At the leisure centre you can go, ice skating, to the gym, in the swimming pool and you can even go to get swimming lessons or ice skating lessons. If you’re between 10 and 15 you can go to the ice skating disco. There is no place I would rather live than here.’

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Gloria brings her 'What Women Want Tour' to an end in Eastwood

March 10th 2014

Last Friday (7th March) local MP and shadow spokesperson for women, Gloria De Piero marked International Women’s Day by holding a special listening event with a group of young women at Eastwood Comprehensive.

Gloria brought her nationwide ‘What Women Want Tour’ to a close last week and the event at Eastwood Comprehensive gave almost young women from the 6th form the chance to not only to quiz Gloria but also talk their day to day lives, their dreams, hopes and aspirations and also their worries.

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Mums tell Shadow Women & Equalities Minister exactly what they want

March 7th 2014

Shadow Women & Equalities Minister, Gloria De Piero and Sherwood’s Parliamentary Candidate Léonie Mathers held a joint listening event with a group of mums in Newstead to mark International Women’s Day and heard them talk candidly about their day to day lives and the struggles they face.

Gloria was joined by a dozen mums and the candidate for Sherwood at the Newstead Centre on Tilford Road. The event gave the women the chance to be as honest, open, brutal and frank as they wanted and they didn’t hold back – telling them exactly what they thought, especially when it came to the future of their local nursery which is facing closure.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

March 5th 2014

RESULT – Last year I promised to help mums, dads and grandparents who were campaigning to get the pavement widened outside Westwood School amid fears it was only a matter of time before a child was involved in a serious accident. I took up their fight and wrote to council bosses and I’m pleased to say they listened and agreed to act. It was great to get the confirmation that the footpath will be widened and the road narrowed to the width of one vehicle. Parents have already told me they are absolutely over the moon now the safety measures are in place and have invited me down to take a look for myself. I’m just happy I've been able to help. See you in a few weeks!

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Gloria helps get alleged police rape case reopened 33 years on

March 4th 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero's intervention has helped get an alleged police rape case reopened 33 years on.

It means so much to Michelle to get her case reopened and as her MP I'm glad to do what I can to support her," she said. "Its all down to Michelle for refusing to take no for an answer."

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MP backs Council's disability support event

March 3rd 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero dropped in at a special event at the Mill Adventure Base in Sutton to find out more about the work that is going on to help people with disabilities and mental health issues back into work.

The event which aimed to raise greater awareness of the benefits of employing local people who have a disability took place throughout the day and had been organised for local employers by partners from the Job Centre, Nottinghamshire County Council, Portland College, Remploy and the Shaw Trust.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

February 26th 2014

Last month I warned the Government not to be complacent when it came to unemployment after we witnessed a spike in the number of people signing on in Ashfield despite an overall fall nationally. My warning should have acted as a wakeup call to ministers as this month’s figures also reveal an alarming rise of 167 - an increase for the second month in a row. This is a pattern that cannot be allowed to continue and ministers can’t just turn a blind eye to places like Ashfield. It’s galling to hear them say the good times are back when you consider that back in 2008 immediately before the financial crash only 20 women had been out of work longer than a year in Ashfield. There are now 225 women in the same position, which just goes to show there’s still a very long way to go yet.

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Gloria helps Sutton war veteran's widow secure Arctic Star Medal

February 22nd 2014

A widow from Sutton has finally received an Arctic Star medal for her late husband’s war efforts - more than 70 years after the conflict ended after the intervention of Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero.

Betty Barlow’s husband, Mr Douglas Barlow, was a Second World War hero who served in the Royal Navy on the Arctic Convoys with distinction. Seventy years on surviving veterans and their widows and relatives were finally meant to have received a medal to honour their service and sacrifice but after applying for the award for her late husband, Mrs Barlow heard nothing back.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

February 21st 2014

Getting elected as Eastwood’s MP back in May 2010 was one of the proudest moments of my life and I can’t believe how quickly it has gone. I made one simple promise that day which was to work as hard as I could and you’ve all certainly made sure I’ve kept to my word. It’s been an exceptionally busy start to the year and although we are only half way through February I’ve already dealt with 150 enquiries but I’m sure there’s still plenty more I can do. If you’ve got a problem with a pothole, anti-social behaviour or troublesome neighbours, Income Tax or Tax Credits or simply want advice or have ideas about how to improve our area then get in touch and let me see if I can make a difference.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

February 19th 2014

I’d like to start this week’s column by saying a massive thank you to a couple of Year 6 pupils from Kirkby Woodhouse Primary School who are stars of the future. Jodi, Aaliyah, Abby, Jessica, Lucy and Jack from Mrs Butler-Mallender’s class were so fed up with the state of the public footpaths next to their school they decided to write to the authorities themselves. It’s great to see such a ‘can do’ attitude in young people and it must have made the people in charge sit up and take notice because Nottinghamshire County Council have now cleared up the mess. In my job I send out lots of letters every week and I can honestly say yours were well and truly up to the standard required. In fact if you carry on like this I wouldn’t be at all surprised if you go on to be caseworkers, councillors or even MPs when you are older. Keep up the good work and have fun over half-term!

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Ashfield MP calls for fair funding for Council

February 17th 2014

Local MP Gloria De Piero has called on ministers to stop hitting the most deprived communities in the country the hardest with cuts and demanded Ashfield District Council get a fair deal when it comes to funding from central Government.

The Labour MP was outraged when she learnt the full extent of the funding cuts the area will be subjected to in 2015/16. New figures from the latest local government finance settlement reveal the local council is seeing cuts in funding in double figures while more leafy and affluent areas like Surrey and Guildford in the south are actually seeing increases in the funding they receive.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

February 12th 2014

We've all experienced an annoying cold call from a company desperately trying to sign you up to the latest all singing, all dancing deal. It doesn’t matter how many times you say no they still persist and sometimes a line is crossed. One household name should be deeply ashamed of their actions. The daughter of an 82 year old lady from Sutton who suffers from Alzheimer’s recently contacted me after a company signed her mum up to an iPhone contract after cold calling her. The family’s plea to cancel the contract fell on deaf ears. I was livid and made my feelings known to the chief executive who immediately apologised and cancelled the contract.

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Ashfield folk see fall in wages

February 9th 2014

The avereage weekly earnings for both men and women in Ashfield has fallen in the past three years according to figures Gloria obtained from the Government after tabling a Parliamentary Written Question.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

February 5th 2014

WARNING – Keep your eyes peeled for men from a ‘company’ and I use that term in the loosest possible sense, who have been going from door to door in and around Kirkby offering Green Deal surveys. These rogue traders had the nerve to rip off one local couple who’d been promised a survey after handing over £300 only for them to disappear into the sunset and never be seen again. I’ve been in touch with the authorities and been advised there are some scammers operating so please, please, please keep your wits about you. Obviously not every company is dodgy but if you do see something that doesn't quite look right - report it.

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Gloria goes back to school to take up casework for the parents at Brookhill Leys

February 3rd 2014

Last Friday afternoon local MP Gloria De Piero dropped visited Brookhill Leys Primary School to chat to parents on the busy school run and trial another new way of meeting constituents who are sometimes too busy to attend her regular surgeries and coffee mornings.

Every parent was sent an invite to the event by the school and Gloria and the head teacher, Jacquie Sainsbury hosted the informal drop-in for mums and dads half an hour before the school closed for the day.

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Ashfield MP visits ground-breaking Kirkby firm

January 31st 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero was today invited on a guided tour to meet staff and see ground-breaking Kirkby firm Brightwake Ltd’s high-tech production facilities and research and development centre in action.

The business, which is based on Lowmoor Road Business Park, exports its specialised wound dressings across the globe and counts economic powerhouse, China, as one of its major clients and now has its eyes set firmly on the developing markets as it continues to invent brand new state of the art medical equipment.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

January 29th 2014

WIN OF THE MONTH – there were quite a few candidates to choose from but in the end I had to opt for a case which came to my attention just before Christmas. I’d been in touch with a lovely lady who runs the Alfreton Road Residents’ Association. The people involved up there are good people and they do all sorts of brilliant things for others - organising outings and events for older people and those with disabilities. The issue was that they needed a meeting room once a week where they could all get together. I asked the landlord at the Staff of Life pub if they could help out and it turns out their good work hadn’t gone unnoticed. They now meet every Wednesday at a room in the pub and thirty odd people turned up last time to chat, do a quiz and play games. One good turn for another and another great example of why I love Ashfield.

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MP congratulates regulars at Skegby pub after they raise over £700 for air ambulance campaign

January 27th 2014

Last Friday (24th January) Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero paid a ‘flying’ visit to the Forest Tavern in Skegby to congratulate fundraisers at the pub who have helped raise a whopping £752 for the Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire Air Ambulance over the last couple of months.

Charity conscious staff and pub goers responded to the Chad’s call to arms last year to help to help keep the vital air ambulance service flying over the Ashfield skies and their efforts have helped swell the coffers as the campaign attempts to reach its £300,000 target.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

January 24th 2014

One couple in Newthorpe who live on a private road got in touch with me a few weeks ago because they were absolutely fed up with the poor state of the road. It was so bad that every time there was a heavy downpour the uneven surface caused flooding nearby. This was an unusual case because the road was owned by a business rather than the Council but to be fair, once I got onto them the troublesome road was fixed within four days. Thank you Maplebeck Holdings.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

January 22nd 2014

I received a heart-breaking email this week from a man who told me how he and has partner were finding it harder and harder to get by each day. This isn’t someone who is on benefits; he’s a grafter who regularly does 60 plus hours a week to provide for his family. His partner who is desperate for a job has been looking for two years but just can’t find anything that fits around school hours. They’ve not had the heating on for months because they simply can’t afford it and they are up to their eyes in debt because they’ve used payday loans to buy their food. I couldn't stop thinking about this man and I told Ed Miliband about him. Ed personally gave him a call and talked about him in a speech last week. This isn’t about party politics though - it’s about the scandal of the working poor. It’s about a real cost of living crisis facing people in our own community. It’s why I’ve demanded ministers take urgent action to freeze energy bills. It’s why I’ve been campaigning to expand free childcare for working parents with 3-4 year olds from 15-25 hours per work and it’s why I believe providing employers with an incentive to introduce the Living Wage is so important. I’m now in touch with the gentleman and am doing all I can to help. I know there are more people out there. Please get in touch if you need me.

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MP discovers local NHS Trust has handed out an eye watering £3.5m in pay-offs to managers

January 21st 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has uncovered the NHS Trust which runs King’s Mill Hospital in her constituency has paid out an eye watering £3.5m in exit packages to non-clinical staff in the last three years.

The Labour MP was shocked when she discovered the full extent of the sums of money involved after submitting a Freedom of Information Request to Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. A breakdown of the FOI reveals the Trust, which has been hit by financial problems in recent years, forked out exactly £3,550,583.18 in settlements to non-clinical staff, likely to include executives and senior managers between 2010-2013.

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Ashfield MP helps Sutton firm secure compensation from major bank

January 20th 2014

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero was invited to visit D&S Storage, a small family run business based on Coxmoor Road,Sutton in Ashfield, last Friday  (17th January) after helping secure compensation from a bank who admitted mis-selling the firm an interest rate swap agreement.

The local business which provides blast freezing and cold storage facilities to companies across the East Midlands involved in the food and confectionary trades, employing eighteen people in the process came to the MP for help to speed up its claim for compensation and assist its cash flow.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

January 15th 2014

I’m always saying that our area deserves more lottery funding. Although we have some great facilities in Ashfield there’s always room for improvement and I’m sure everyone could name a gym, a park or a community centre which has seen better days and is need of some TLC. That’s why I'm so pleased that Mansfield Hosiery Mills Sports & Social Club, just off Huthwaite Road had been awarded a grant of £50,000 from the Football Stadia Improvement Fund. The good news means they will be able to construct a brand new changing room pavilion. There's cash out there - apply for it. Look on the National Lottery website to find out how.

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Gloria goes on tour to West Notts College to hear womens' views

January 13th 2014

Last Friday (10th January) Ashfield MP and shadow spokesperson for women, Gloria De Piero, held a special listening event with a group of women who are enrolled on hair & beauty courses at West Nottinghamshire College.

At the end of last year, the local MP was promoted to the shadow cabinet and in her new role she is planning to meet with a whole host of different groups of women from across the country and talk candidly about some of the issues that matter most to them. Over the coming weeks these groups will include; expectant mums, Muslim women, dancers, high flying city workers and women footballers to find out what issues motivate them and whether they feel politics connects with them and their lives. 

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Gloria writes for the Chad

January 8th 2014

I’d like to start my first Chad column of 2014 by wishing everyone in Ashfield a slightly belated but very happy New Year. Last year, I made a very simple new year’s resolution which was to never to take no for an answer and looking back over the past year I think it stood me in good stead as I managed to secure some great victories for local folk. I'm sticking with the same resolution this year. Though I can’t promise that I’ll win every battle you have my word that I’ll always give it my best shot, so if you’ve got a problem or an issue that needs resolving, no matter how big or small then don’t’ hesitate to get in touch.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

December 27th 2013

CAN YOU HELP? – For several years now Eastwood man Andrew Lings has been involved in a brilliant project in the African country of Burkina Faso, which according to the charity Christian Aid is the third poorest country in the whole world. I’ve got to know Andrew really well since becoming the local MP and through blood, sweat and tears at home and abroad he has helped play a part in the construction of a small school in a village near Bobo Dioulasso. Although the school currently has two classrooms, the aim is eventually build twelve but each costs around £5,000, so there’s a long way to go! In the meantime they are desperately trying to get enough money together to pay for essentials like new chairs and desks for the kids. If you are interested and want to find out more e-mail burkinafasoschool@outlook.com

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Gloria writes for the Chad

December 18th 2013

Over the last couple of weeks I've received more complaints than usual from residents about overgrown trees and hedges around their homes and gardens. Margaret, a pensioner from Sutton, is the latest person to get in touch to tell me that she was fed up with the large overhanging tree that is not only unsightly but has also damaged her property. She did get in touch with Ashfield Homes herself and although they promised to tackle the problem they said work wouldn’t be carried out until late next year. I politely asked bosses to speed up the process and low and behold the troublesome tree was cut back last week. Thanks Ashfield homes for sorting this. If anyone else has a similar problem then please let me know.

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MP picks Abbey Hillschool girl as Christmas card competition winner

December 12th 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero visited Abbey Hill Primary and Nursery School in Kirkby l and surprised one lucky pupil when she revealed the winning design of this year’s Christmas card competition.

As soon as Gloria became MP she broke with the tradition of using the standard Parliamentary Christmas card and instead decided to showcase the talent of local school children from across the constituency. Six weeks ago the local MP invited every primary and infant school in Ashfield & Eastwood to take part and help design her personal Christmas card and she has since been inundated with cards in the post.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

December 11th 2013

An Englishman's home is his castle or so the saying goes and it's one that certainly seems to ring true with many of you. When I'm out door knocking I can see how much pride and care people take in the appearance and upkeep of their homes and gardens. That's why I empathised with Peter, from Kirkby, when he told me he was sick to the back teeth with overgrown and overhanging shrubs, brambles, weeds and even rubbish outside his property. No one should have to put up with that, so I was more than happy to give Nottinghamshire County Council a nudge. It must have worked because days later, Peter emailed to say he was delighted with work carried out by the council, sending a glowing report back about how it was much tidier, oncoming traffic could see round the corner, he could see out of his drive and even his kitchen is much lighter. It's the little results that make the job worthwhile.

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Ashfield MP gets into the festive spirit at The Tin Hat centre's Christmas Fayre

December 9th 2013

Last Saturday (7th December) local MP Gloria De Piero got well and truly into the festive spirit when she visited the Tin Hat Centre’s annual Christmas fayre in Selston.

Each year the popular community centre puts on a big Christmas fayre and staff and volunteers throw open the doors to everyone in the village and the surrounding area and begin the countdown to Christmas.

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Gloria shows her support for Ashfield's small businesses

December 7th 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero visited small businesses to celebrate their contribution to the local economy.

The visit formed part of the UK's first ever 'Small Business Saturday' intitiative.

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Ashfield MP discovers local NHS Trust shelled out nearly £5m to management consultants at king's Mill Hospital

December 5th 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has discovered the NHS Trust which runs King’s Mill Hospital in Sutton, has shelled out almost £5 million on external management consultants in the last three years.

After submitting a Freedom of Information Request last month the Labour MP was shocked when she uncovered the full extent of the extravagant level of spending on management experts by Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

The FOI reveals the Trust, which has had well documented financial problems, paid out precisely £4,836,875.19 to external management consultants between 2010 and 2013.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

December 4th 2013

I’m campaigning to expand free childcare for working parents with 3 & 4 year olds from 15 to 25 hours per week because the cost of a nursery place is now at its highest in history. A typical parent in Ashfield, doing a part-time job would have to work from Monday until Thursday just to cover the costs of childcare. On top of this, 578 Sure Start Centres have closed nationally since 2010, despite promises from the Prime Minister this wouldn’t happen. I know parents in Kirkby and Huthwaite are up in arms about plans to withdraw services at Sunny Days at the Summit Centre and Huthwaite Childcare. If parents want to tell me what this means to them please drop me a line on gloria.depiero.mp@parliament.uk so I can raise it with the PM. I understand Nottinghamshire County Council are in talks to secure a replacement provider at the Summit Centre and will keep you in touch when I get more info.

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MP and council highways chief check on the state of Ashfield's roads

December 2nd 2013

Last Friday local MP Gloria De Piero invited the Director of Highways at Nottinghamshire County Council, Andrew Warrington to Ashfield to check on the state of the roads in the constituency.

When she was first elected back in 2010 the Labour MP was shocked at how widespread the problem of potholes was in the area and in that time many residents have raised the issue with her as part of her regular casework.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

November 30th 2013

The school run can often be a nightmare, whether that is for parents, the school or local residents and often there’s never an easy solution that suits all parties. The head teacher at Brookhill Leys Primary School mentioned to me that there's an ongoing parking issue. She's asked me to let you know that the school understands the concerns of residents and is working with parents to ensure there’s no inappropriate parking on Chewton Street. If anyone affected does have concerns then please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me so I can pass it on.

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Gloria pledges to tackle cost of childcare crisis for working families in Ashfield

November 29th 2013

This week Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has pledged to help working families cope with the rising cost of childcare.

Childcare is a huge expense for working parents, with families in Ashfield paying up to £104 for childcare. For some families this can be as much as having a second mortgage and can be a major barrier to getting into work and making ends meet. 

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Gloria writes for the Chad

November 27th 2013

Moment of the Month – it’s never nice when bills land on the doormat. Your heart sinks and you start to guess what each one is and how much it will be before you even open it. What’s even more unpleasant is when you receive a bill from the taxman and debt collectors and angry follow up letters month after month demanding a payment when you’ve always paid your taxes on time and followed the instructions to the letter of the law. This is what happened to one Sutton man and it would start to take its toll on most people, especially when you’ve already explained there must be a mistake. Big organisations aren’t always great when it comes to customer service but I’ve found they usually reply to a letter from me. HMRC have since sent a full apology, a tax rebate and cheque of £30 to the gentleman in question. If anyone else has a similar story then get in touch and I’ll do my best to help.

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Ashfield MP appalled after official figures show a 36% increase in winter deaths locally

November 26th 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has hit out at the Government after shocking new figures released today (26th November 2013) by the Office of National Statistics revealed that there has been a 36% increase in the number of excess winter deaths recorded in the region compared to the previous year.

The latest ONS stats for the East Midlands paint a bleak picture and show that 2,700 people died unnecessarily last winter, up from 2011/12 by a massive 36% when the number of excess winter deaths stood at 1,980 and far higher than the national rise which is up by 29%.

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MP writes to planning ministers following local house building meeting

November 25th 2013

Last Friday local MP Gloria De Piero called a meeting between Brinsley Parish Councillors, Milan Radulovic the leader of Broxtowe Borough Council and Trevor Watson the Service Director at Ashfield District Council to discuss the Ashfield Local Plan and the impact it may have on neighbouring Brinsley which sits in Broxtowe.

Over the last year or so many people have contacted Gloria to raise their objections to  house building on green belt land and Brinsley residents  are particularly concerned about plans to develop a narrow strip of land between Underwood which borders the village. Local parish councillors fear that if the development is given the go ahead it will mean the village will in effect merge into a larger conurbation with the neighbouring villages Selston and Underwood in Ashfield and lose its independence and identity.

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Gloria helps decorate D.H. Lawrence Birthplace Museum's Fairy Grotto ahead of the big light switch on

November 22nd 2013

Local MP Gloria De Piero got into the Christmas spirit and pitched in with volunteers and staff to prepare the D.H. Lawrence Birthplace Museum’s Fairy Grotto ahead of the Eastwood Christmas light switch-on event tomorrow evening (26th November).

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MP angry at A&E cash snub and demands Ashfield gets its fair share of additional funding

November 21st 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has today written to the Secretary of State for Health to demand that Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust which runs King’s Mill Hospital gets a slice of £150m additional funding announced yesterday.

The Government announced that an extra £150m was to be handed out to NHS trusts on top of £500m already earmarked to help relieve pressure on accident & emergency wards this winter and avoid a repeat of last year’s A&E crisis.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

November 20th 2013

The whole of my column this week is dedicated to some real results I've achieved for our community. Huthwaite residents have told me about the problems caused by traffic problems on Chesterfield Road for some time. I've pestered the council constantly and I've now received an email from the highways department at Nottinghamshire County Council which mean new rules introducing weight restrictions for driving up chesterfield road will be in place by the end of the year. If this doesn't happen - please let me know so I can pull them up but this looks like good news - Together we've done it!

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Gloria writes for the Chad

November 13th 2013

It's time to move beyond the minimum wage. People need a living wage because poverty is becoming a grinding reality for those families who work too. I know we can't force firms to implement it but we can give them a cash incentive so they'd pay a bit less tax if they did put their workers on the living wage. In the UK over five million people are paid less than the living wage of £7.45 an hour and in Ashfield a staggering one in four of you earn less than that.

I spoke at an event last week to mark national Living Wage Week and met 43 year old mum Cate who lives locally and who's a catering assistant at Nottingham University. She told me that her family haven't had a holiday for four years and that saying 'no' to her kids has become a daily fact of life. It's a story which far too many hard working parents will recognise especially in the lead up to Christmas. 

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Ashfield MP joins energy campaign

November 11th 2013

Last Saturday (9th November) local MP Gloria De Piero joined energy campaigners and Labour Party activists at the launch of a constituency wide petition calling on the Prime Minister to freeze energy prices.

The Labour Party declared a national day of action at the weekend to tackle the cost of living crisis with events taking place up and down the country and the Ashfield and Eastwood MP joined campaigners at a special street stall in Eastwood before taking the campaign on the road to meet shoppers in Kirkby and Sutton town centre as well.

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Gloria promises to tackle anti-social behaviour for retired Sutton couple

November 7th 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has promised a retired Sutton couple that she will do all that she can to tackle the anti-social behaviour which has made their lives a misery.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

November 6th 2013

I meet many amazing people in Ashfield but sometimes I meet someone extraordinary who displays such courage that they humble me. People like Gary Thrall who got his life and business back on track after a vicious knife attack, or hero and family man, Kris Harrison, from Huthwaite who served his country for over six years as a soldier. Recently, I’ve met someone else I’d like to add to that list - Michelle Noble - soon the truth will out but for now I want to say that I have nothing but admiration for you Michelle. You are a remarkable woman.

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MP takes roving surgery to Eastwood

November 5th 2013

This Friday (8th November at 5pm) local MP Gloria De Piero is bringing her roving surgery to The Sun Inn in Eastwood. Gloria is keen to build on the success of similar events she has hosted over the last few months.

Gloria is determined to stay as approachable as possible and the relaxed and down to earth manner of the previous pub surgeries across the constituency at the Dog & Quayle, Masons Arms, The Junction and The Staff of Life  have proved to be extremely popular with constituents.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

November 1st 2013

When I was flicking through the national newspapers the other week one story really jumped out at me - for the first time since World War Two the Red Cross are handing out food parcels in Britain this winter. The very same week another charity, the Trussell Trust said it handed out supplies to over 350,000 people since April. That means the number of people in this country resorting to help to feed their families has more than tripled compared to the same period last year and sadly this crisis is hitting our community too with the Eastwood Volunteer Bureau reporting a 400% increase in demand. I’ve given my backing to the donation campaign already but the Advertiser deserves a lot of credit for bringing the plight of many to the front of our minds. I’m sure I don’t need to say it again but if you do have any food going spare at all that you can afford to give away then please give them a call. This should be a wake-up call to Government Ministers who need to face up to the fact that families, including many in Eastwood, are really struggling.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

October 30th 2013

It’s not until you do this job that you realise just how brave and determined some people are and it really is an honour to be their local MP. Tracy Hart from Kirkby tragically lost her brother in a rail accident at King’s Mill level crossing and she and her family have been campaigning to tackle safety concerns with Network Rail ever since. Last week MPs from across all parties met as the Transport Select Committee heard oral and written evidence from families who have also been affected by similar tragedies and how more safety measures are needed at crossings. I personally submitted evidence and questions from Tracy to the chairwoman, Louise Ellman MP because it’s essential the family have their voice heard.

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Rural bus services and planning top the agenda at busy Selston coffee morning

October 29th 2013

Last Saturday local MP Gloria De Piero hosted yet another coffee morning, this time for Selston residents at the popular café at The Tin Hat Centre and bus provision and planning topped the agenda.

Many residents were quick to tell Gloria how hard it is for folk who can’t drive to get out and about because of the lack of bus services in the parish and the MP has once again written bosses at Nottinghamshire County Council and two of the companies who operate in the patch, Trent Barton and Doyles to raise villagers concerns again.

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Local MP drops in at the Council offices to meet bosses and staff

October 26th 2013

Last Friday Eastwood MP Gloria De Piero dropped in at the head quarters of Broxtowe Borough Council and met bosses and workers from across departments to discuss some of the topical issues affecting the area.

The Leader of the Council, Milan Radulovic was eager for the local MP to meet staff and Gloria managed to find space in her busy diary to fix up the tour last week. A large amount of the constituency casework she receives on a daily basis is council related with planning, house building and the protection of green spaces as well as anti-social behaviour often right at the top of the list of residents concerns.

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Gloria joins the fight against breast cancer

October 25th 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero was proud to join fight against breast cancer by taking part in Breast Cancer Campaign’s biggest (and pinkest) fundraiser, wear it pink day.

Over the last 10 years wear it pink has raised a staggering £23 million and on Friday 25 October 2013 people from across the constituency came together in schools, colleges and businesses throughout the country to raise vital funds for Breast Cancer Campaign’s lifesaving research.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

October 23rd 2013

I was truly honoured to have been able to help the widow of a Second World War hero from Kirkby who served in the Royal Navy on the Arctic Convoys. Seventy years on surviving veterans and widows were finally meant to have received a new medal but after initially applying for the award for her late husband, Betty Barlow heard nothing back. A seven decade wait was long enough, so I chased officials at the Ministry of Defence and I’m delighted to say that she’s at last received the medal in recognition of her husband’s bravery. Betty your husband and men like him did our country proud and I’m proud to have helped you.

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Gloria delivers talk to Shirebrook Academy as part of national Speakers for Schools Initiative

October 21st 2013

Ashfield MP and shadow women & equalities minister Gloria De Piero was the special guest at Shirebrook Academy as part of the national Speakers for Schools initiative.

Gloria is just one of hundreds of eminent and famous people from across the arts, politics and the professions to have signed up to the ground breaking initiative. The charity was launched by the BBC’s journalist Robert Peston to give talks at schools in some of the most deprived areas of the country and broaden young people’s horizons and raise aspirations.

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Gloria meets the leaders of tomorrow at Quarrydale Academy

October 19th 2013

Last Friday Gloria De Piero joined year 11 students at Quarrydale Academy as they were put through their paces working on a series of tasks which had been designed to mimic how businesses and other organisations operate in the world of work.

Each year the Sutton school hosts ‘Enterprise Day’ where ambitious youngsters work alongside business leaders and representatives from local organisations including the MP’s office and Ashfield District Council to develop and promote skills to help make them the leaders of tomorrow in business and the wider community.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

October 18th 2013

It’s a real honour to have been asked to serve as the spokesperson for women & equalities in the shadow cabinet. It’s a fantastic role and over the last three years I’ve met plenty of strong minded women in Ashfield who haven’t been afraid in coming forward to tell me exactly what they’d like to see ministers doing or not doing as the case may be. I want to hear a lot more from you in the coming months so keep the ideas flowing. If there’s something you think I need to be shouting about, let me know because I want to take the views and concerns of women right to the heart of politics in my new role.

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Time to let me get on with my job

October 17th 2013

Yesterday I learned that a news agency claiming to be acting on behalf of a national newspaper have offered several thousand pounds to obtain topless pictures I posed for when I was a teenager. The offer was made to the owner of a building in Bradford. I understand that he was offered money for access to the building and a further payment if the pictures were found.

I have talked about why I posed for these pictures in interviews before. I thought at the time it was a way of improving my circumstances. This is part of my story and part of who I am. I can’t change it now but this happened over twenty years ago.

It is now time to call off the hunt for these pictures and let me get on with the job I was elected to do, representing the people of Ashfield and serving in the shadow cabinet.

I don’t think anyone wants politics to be open only to those people who were planning their political careers in their teens. I would like to see a politics that represents our country, including many more women from all walks of life, and that is something I am passionately committed to help bring about.

No one should have to worry that something they did when they were young might prevent them from serving their community or getting involved in politics at a local or national level.

Gloria writes for the Chad

October 9th 2013

Given the serious and well documented financial issues facing King’s Mill, I was furious when I found out how much two interim bosses at the Trust were paid last year. I find it hard to comprehend how the huge salaries can be justified so I’ve written to the Health Secretary to demand answers. I want to know;

*Who authorised these salaries and if anyone in his department had knowledge beforehand. 

*Does he think these salaries are justifiable at a time when the NHS is having to make unprecedented savings, especially when the Keogh review found “significant concerns around staffing at both King’s Mill and Newark” and when 5,500 nursing jobs have been lost nationally.

As soon as I hear back I’ll let readers know. We all care deeply about the future of our local hospital but it’s my job to ask the difficult questions as well as report praise when things go well.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

October 4th 2013

You don't need me to tell that some big companies don't always do the right thing - the banks and energy companies come in for much public criticism and it’s not hard to see why. I’d like to start this month’s column by saying a big thank you to two businesses who have been doing their bit for charity - both Warburtons and Greggs have recently donated to the Eastwood Volunteer Bureau which is just as well because the local charity has reported a steep rise in demand for food parcels over the last year.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

October 2nd 2013

I know that the cost of living is a real problem for many people in Ashfield - I know because you tell me that family budgets just don’t seem to stretch as far as they used to and prices are always going up but wages are frozen. People are working harder, for longer, for less, year after year and it is taking its toll in different ways. Recently, I had a call from a grandfather in Sutton who had bought his grandson a school jumper for £9 but was unhappy the same jumper was available at a discounted price on the internet. As he rightly told me, not everyone has the luxury of the internet and he also pointed out the same jumper could be bought in a supermarket minus the logo. Now I’m a big fan of school uniforms but costs should be kept to a minimum, particularly at a time when families are really hard-pressed. After a lengthy campaign at least the penny finally seems to have dropped with ministers conceding change may be needed. It’s long overdue and I’ll be keeping a close eye on it.

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Gloria launches annual school Christmas card competition

October 1st 2013

Gloria De Piero has once again launched her annual school Christmas card competition and the local MP has invited every primary and infant school in the constituency to pick up their pens, pencils, crayons and paint brushes and help design her personal Christmas card this year.

As soon as Gloria became MP she broke with the tradition of using the standard parliamentary Christmas card and instead decided to showcase the talent of local school children from across the constituency instead. In December a panel of local judges will be given the tough task of having to pick out this year’s winning card.

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MP helps raise awareness of Guide Dogs campaign

September 30th 2013

Last week Gloria De Piero saw the fun side of the Labour Party Conference by visiting staff and volunteers from the Guide Dogs at the special street clutter mini golf course to help raise awareness of their ‘Streets Ahead’ campaign.

Street clutter, such as shop advertising boards and wheelie bins can sometimes be a real inconvenience for blind and partially sighted people on streets up and down the country, including those in Ashfield.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

September 25th 2013

In the job I do you never go very long without answering a call or email, it’s just part of the job and I always try to respond or resolve a problem as quickly as I can. It’s a shame the same can’t be said for some of the big companies I deal with on behalf of fed up constituents. One older couple from Kirkby were so frustrated with the amount of expensive calls they had to make just to cancel their TV subscription. Each time they thought it had been cancelled they were surprised to find yet another direct debit payment. I got involved and they’ve now got their money back and their account has FINALLY been cancelled too!

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Local MP gives thumbs up to Ashfield jobs fair

September 20th 2013

Yesterday afternoon (19th September) local MP Gloria De Piero gave her backing to an ambitious jobs fair at Kirkby’s Festival Hall Leisure Centre which had been organised to help fight unemployment in the area.

Mansfield & Ashfield District Council and a number of other organisations hosted the huge jobs fair for Ashfield folk as part of the ‘Getting Mansfield and Ashfield Working campaign.’ Throughout the day there were apprenticeships, job vacancies and all sorts of free advice and help on offer and during the afternoon Gloria got the chance to chat to some of the jobseekers, employers and charities and hear more about their own personal experiences.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

September 18th 2013

Ashfield never ceases to amaze me. The place we call home is also home to a fair share of talented sports men and women. This week a little birdy told me about the fantastic achievements of 16 year old Caelidh Ross from Sutton. To those that haven’t heard of her yet, she is this year’s British Champion under 17 girls 800m runner. Over the summer she competed against some of the UK’s top adult women including full internationals in London, coming 5th in the race despite being at least four years younger than her competitors. Her time of 2:06:63 was faster than Olympic Gold Medallist, Dame Kelly Holmes ran at that age and she followed this up at the beginning of the month with her biggest win to date at the AAA’s Championship. All in all not a bad year then for someone described as a wonderful young lady who never shouts from the rooftops or even talks about her achievements much. She might not but I will. Well done Caelidh! It’s great to see a girl from Ashfield making a name for herself.

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MP tests the temperature of parents at Jeffries Primary School

September 16th 2013

Last Friday afternoon (13th September) Gloria De Piero stood in the playground to meet mums and dads as they picked up their children from Jeffries Primary and Nursery School. Gloria was trialling another new way of meeting constituents who are sometimes too busy to attend her regular surgeries and coffee mornings. 

Gloria is determined to be as open and accessible as possible and recognises that not everyone is always able to take time out of their busy day and to meet her – so the MP is making it her mission to visit them instead.

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Gloria plays the part of an Edwardian servant to celebrate this year's D.H. Lawrence Festival

September 13th 2013

Local MP Gloria De Piero joined in the celebrations at the D.H. Lawrence Birthplace Museum by donning fancy dress and playing the part of an Edwardian servant dressed to tackle a number of backbreaking domestic chores.

During her visit to the Birthplace Museum, Gloria got the chance to immerse herself in the world of Lawrence and his family and learn more about the day to day life of people from his hometown as well as taking part in the Edwardian Chores Tour and tasks included; emptying a chamber pot, darning, repairing a rug and stocking the pantry.

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MP decorates office with pupils charity artwork

September 12th 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero was joined by six charity conscious and arty pupils from year eight at Quarrydale Academy who helped decorate her constituency office with special artwork as part of the ‘Send My Friend to School’ campaign. 

Send My Friend to School brings together thousands of children across the country to speak up for the right to education and remind world leaders of their promise that all children should get the chance to go to school, no matter what their personal circumstances are.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

September 11th 2013

As kids across Ashfield returned to school it became clear there’s a growing crisis with primary school places. Almost half of England’s school districts will have more pupils than places within two years. If that isn’t bad enough, some local areas face a 20% shortfall in places by 2015 according to analysis of official data. I've already heard from some concerned parents but I'd like to hear from everyone so I can get an idea of the scale of the problem. If you've struggled to get your little one in to the school of their choice or if they are in a temporary classroom or perhaps you've noticed their class size is getting close to having 30 pupils in it, let me know.

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Poor conditions of roads tops the agenda at busy coffee morning

September 10th 2013

Last weekend Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero hosted yet another busy coffee morning, this time for residents in Huthwaite and the surrounding area at the local leisure centre and the state of the roads topped the agenda.

Lots of those who attended told the MP they were fed up with the poor condition of many of the roads in the area and Sutton Road and Huthwaite Road were singled out as having the worst maintained surfaces locally.

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Energy companies' £3.3bn uplift in profits while over 6,000 households in Ashfield in fuel poverty

September 9th 2013

Shocking new figures have revealed that 6,168 households in Ashfield are in fuel poverty, and thousands more are facing a cost of living crisis – at the same time as Britain’s big six energy companies have enjoyed a £3.3 billion uplift in profits since May 2010. The average family’s energy bill has increased by more than £300 a year since the last election.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

September 6th 2013

I know that for many people in the area potholes are a recurring problem and it is an issue that comes up time and again whenever I meet folk or open up my letters and e-mails. Lots of Brinsley residents have been particularly concerned about the conditions Brynsmoor Road and since it was brought to my attention I’ve been on to Nottinghamshire County Council. I’m pleased to say bosses in the Highways Department have now confirmed this problem road is set to be resurfaced between the 9th-13th December. Result.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

September 4th 2013

I try to get about the constituency as much as possible because it’s the best way to stay in touch and find out what matters most to you. Last week I found myself talking to residents on Chesterfield Road in Huthwaite and every single door I knocked on mentioned the enormous HGV Lorries which hurtle up and down the busy road every day. I was nearly blown off the pavement myself by one. I want residents to know this is something I’ve been writing to Nottinghamshire County Council for a considerable number of months now and bosses have told me there is a Committee Meeting with the Transport and Highways Department scheduled for October, where a decision should finally be made. It is quite clear the current situation is unacceptable and I will continue to lobby and support residents in the hope that common sense prevails and a weight limit is introduced.

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MP's pub surgery still has spaces left

September 2nd 2013

This Friday (6th September at 2pm) Gloria De Piero will host the second in a series of roving surgeries, this time at the Masons Arms on Unwin Road, Sutton-in-Ashfield, and continue with a new way of keeping in touch with Ashfield residents.

The MP is constantly on the lookout for new and innovative ways to connect with her constituents and stay as approachable as possible. Following on from the successful and busy surgery at the Dog & Quayle pub in Underwood a few weeks ago, she has decided to hold this week’s surgery in Sutton.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

August 28 2013

When you have any work carried out on your home you just want it done as quickly and most importantly with as little hassle as possible. Sheila Weaver,72, from Huthwaite, was delighted to get a new heating system fitted under the Government Boiler Scheme, that was until the engineers who fitted it left a whopping great hole in her ceiling and told her it was not their ‘responsibility’ because it was classed as ‘re-decoration’. Sheila was understandably angry when she came to me for help and I wasted no time at all in telling the manager at Valley Services that the situation was downright unacceptable and needed fixing fast. Within 24 hours, Mrs Weaver was back on the phone to tell my office the hole had been repaired. It’s surprising the difference an MP’s letter or phone call can sometimes make.

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Gloria joins angry campaigners as they hand over bus U-turn petition to bosses

August 27 2013

Yesterday afternoon, local MP Gloria De Piero joined campaigners who are angry about the recent decision to scrap a vital bus route as they presented a petition to bosses at Yourbus head office, urging them to reconsider.

Gloria first raised concerns over the plans to scrap the Y29 bus service, which currently serves Eastwood residents and provides a life line link between the town and the Queens Medical Centre in Nottingham at the beginning of the month after worried passengers alerted her to the plans.

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MP urges communities in Ashfield to apply for Lottery funding to mark the centenary of the First World War

August 23 2013

With a year to go until we mark the centenary of the UK entering the First World War, Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero is urging people and groups from across the constituency to consider applying to the Heritage Lottery Fund for Community projects to learn more about the First World War.

The Heritage Lottery Fund is making at least £1 million a year available until 2019 as part of the First World War; then and now programme for small community grants. It will provide grants of £3,000 - £10,000 enabling groups across the country to explore conserve and share their First World War heritage and deepen their understanding of the impact the conflict had in their local communities.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

August 21 2013

Lots of ex miners are continuing to get in touch with me about UK Coal going into administration and the affect this could have on pensions and concessionary fuel entitlements. Ashfield is a proud ex mining community with a rich industrial heritage and unlike more leafy areas this is something that many people, including widows, still rely on to heat their homes. Any loss will hit many people hard. I’m in contact with all the mining unions who are copying me in to anything they receive, which I’m then passing on immediately to concerned residents. I’ve also written to the Minister in charge, Michael Fallon, to get some clarity but I’m yet to hear back. Understandably, this is causing real worry and the Government should do all they can to minimise any impact on pensions and concessionary fuel. If you’d like to be added to the mailing list for updates on this issue, please e-mail me on
gloria.depiero.mp@parliament.uk or call the office on 01623 720 399.

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MP: Working people in Ashfield set to lose thousands by 2015

August 19 2013

Local MP Gloria De Piero has revealed new research which shows the full scale of the cost of living crisis now facing families in Ashfield and across the rest of the region.

According to recently released House of Commons Library figures, working people in the East Midlands are on average £1,404 worse off than they were at the time of the last General Election in May 2010 - a huge fall of 6.5 per cent in real terms. The average decrease across the UK is £1,350, meaning that, in real terms, workers are on average earning today the same as they made in 2001. But the stats also show that people in this region are even worse off, earning £54 less than the average loss.

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Local foodbank in need of donations

August 16 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero is appealing to members of the local community to support the foodbank at St Mary Magdalene in Sutton after volunteers made a desperate plea for donations.

The foodbank has been in operation for the last ten months and the number of users has continued to rise at a steady rate, with over seventy people turning up for help each week.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

August 14 2013

Last week I had a really productive meeting with the new chief executive and chair of King’s Mill. It’s no secret that all hasn’t been well at the Trust but the new bosses seem determined to turn that around and I’m confident that the hospital is now in safe hands. They both told me they are in it for the long haul, which is incredibly important as stability has been lacking for so long. Most importantly after previous horror stories they reassured me that above average mortality rates have now been brought well under control. Since I've been your MP I've had to deal with many complaints - some of those complaints went unanswered for months on end but since the new bosses have taken control I'm getting responses to your concerns in a couple of weeks. Chris and Paul told me they were determined to deliver the first class health service that the people of Ashfield need and deserve. This was music to my ears. They want the hospital to be one of the best in the country and although it may take time, as the local MP it's my job to make sure they deliver.

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MP concerned over loss of vital bus service in Eastwood

August 12 2013

Local MP Gloria De Piero has raised concerns over the decision to scrap the Y29 bus service and ultimately said the Government are to blame after cutting funding for non profitable services. The route currently serves Eastwood residents and provides an important transport link between the town and the Queens Medical Centre.

A number of worried residents who regularly use the service have contacted Gloria in the last few days after initially being told by drivers on the route to brace themselves for the service being withdrawn in as little as five weeks time.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

August 7 2013

Over the last few years it's pretty much impossible not to have noticed the rise in the number of legal payday loan companies which have sprung up on our high streets. Newly released figures from one national charity, StepChange Debt Charity really brought home the depressing severity of the payday loan problems locally to me. Their stats show that last year, Ashfield folk owed an average of £1,455 on payday loans when they turned to the charity for help - that's a whopping increase of 65% compared to just two years ago. Urgent action is now needed to grip the regulation of the payday loan industry, as the number of cases and misery and hardship are growing rapidly because of pressures on living standards and personal finance. I’d like to see the Ministers announce real steps to prevent vulnerable customers from being unfairly fleeced. 

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Gloria writes for the Chad

July 31 2013

After three years in the job I’m now certain that Ashfield has some of the busiest and most active residents in the country. Over the last few weeks the number of letters, e-mails and postcards I’ve received from people opposing the full privatisation of the Royal Mail has steadily grown and I enjoyed meeting a couple of local posties in Parliament to listen to their concerns. I’m a passionate supporter of the Post Office and Royal Mail and I fought tooth and nail to make sure that Kirkby got a permanent Post Office on Lowmoor Road and I will continue take a great deal of interest as to what happens to this great national institution. I want some guarantees that this privatisation doesn't end the same way as the privatisation of our utility companies or rail companies because it is ordinary Ashfield taxpayers who will lose out.

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Kirkby is putting itself back on the map with town centre regeneration

July 25 2013

"I’m incredibly proud to be the town’s MP and I’m certainly much happier when I’m back in Ashfield than when I have to be down in London for Parliament. Local folk are without doubt some of the friendliest and kindest people I’ve ever met and who make you feel instantly at home and this goes a long way to making the town so special and there is more to it than first meets the eye.“
 
“It has an industrial heritage to shout from roof tops about and it helped power Great Britain for years, employing thousands in the process BUT that doesn’t have to mean the town’s best days are behind it. Far from it. Standing still isn’t an option and the local Council have put forward exciting plans to revitalise our town centre and the surrounding area.  If the plans can make the town more appealing to shoppers and boost trade for existing businesses, attracting new ones at the same time and improving leisure opportunities then it will be a good thing. Like every Kirkby resident, as the local MP I want to see Kirkby flourish.”

READ THE FULL STORY

Gloria writes for the Chad

July 24 2013

Last week King’s Mill was placed in ‘Special Measures’ following the publication of the Keogh Review. I’ve seen firsthand the delays in responding to complaints made by patients, and like many Ashfield residents I’ve had some concerns over the quality of care. I’ve met with some people who have been deeply unhappy with the treatment they have received and met with some very distressed people who have lost their loved ones. I welcome the report and I hope that the new chief executive can provide the leadership that has been lacking in recent years. Most importantly he has assured me that he will implement all the recommendations. I'm pleased the report acknowledged that 'this was a Trust on an improvement journey’ but I was concerned that it found ‘significant concerns around staffing levels. The Trust has lost over 200 nurses since 2010 and last week I stood up in the Commons to ask the Secretary of State for Health if we could have them back!

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Gloria joins key local stakeholders at Ashfield & Mansfield Youth Summit

July 19 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero joined a number of key local stakeholders at a summit at Eastbourne Centre in Sutton-in-Ashfield which looked at ways of tackling youth unemployment in the area.

The Mansfield and Ashfield Strategic Partnership (MASP) was behind the youth summit designed to bring to together influential local political leaders, officials, community representatives and other organisations from across both districts to raise awareness of the growing problem of youth unemployment.

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Gloria joins key local stakeholders at Ashfield & Mansfield Youth Summit

July 19 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero joined a number of key local stakeholders at a summit at Eastbourne Centre in Sutton-in-Ashfield which looked at ways of tackling youth unemployment in the area.

The Mansfield and Ashfield Strategic Partnership (MASP) was behind the youth summit designed to bring to together influential local political leaders, officials, community representatives and other organisations from across both districts to raise awareness of the growing problem of youth unemployment.

READ THE FULL STORY

MP calls for greater awareness of PTSD after meeting Sutton-in-Ashfield Forces veteran

July 15 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero paid an emotional visit to an army veteran from Sutton at his family last Friday (12th July) to find out more about the help and support that is on offer to ex and serving armed forces personnel.

READ THE FULL STORY

Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

July 12 2013

I’m worried the Government is getting itself into a right mess with the planning rules. First councils were told to get their local development plans in place within a year. In places where they haven’t managed to do this in time because they’re still talking to local residents or awaiting formal approval – developers can now appeal to the inspectorate to get plans approved even though they haven’t gained local support. This is where I take a rather different view. I believe communities can make these decisions for themselves. It’s the difference between having a say and having it done to you. If the planning system doesn’t have the support of the public it just won’t work.

READ THE FULL STORY

Gloria writes for the Chad

July 10 2013

I was out door knocking in Kirkby the other day and although it’s summer now, one lady on Chartwell road grabbed me to tell me how each winter is a struggle to get off the road because there’s no grit. Last winter she even had to take three days off work to clear the snow herself. She called Nottinghamshire County Council and was told they were sorted. I’m going to take this up for you Julie and demand Notts County Council show some grit and fix it and I’ll send you the replies as soon as I get them.

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Gloria welcomes very special guest to Parliament

July 9 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero welcomed a very special guest down to Parliament. Twelve year old James Morley from Sutton-in-Ashfield, who has a rare form of leukaemia, was one of ten youngsters chosen from different children’s charities and hospices in the UK which the Sporting Bears Motor Club has supported.

On arrival in Parliament, the local MP met James, his little sister Adele, aged seven and Mum and Dad, Pam & Martyn in ancient Westminster Hall. Gloria chatted with James and his family before they embarked on a guided tour of the Parliamentary estate, taking in the Terrace, Central Lobby, the House of Lords and the House of Commons. Gloria also paid a quick visit to the gift shop, buying James a teddy and mum, Pam, a big bottle of red wine.

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Local posties lobby Ashfield MP in Parliament over controversial Royal Mail Plans

July 5 2013

This week postal workers and CWU members from Ashfield and Nottinghamshire got the chance to lobby local MP Gloria De Piero and Labour’s Shadow Minister for Postal Affairs, Ian Murray in Parliament over fears of the full privatisation of the Royal Mail and concerns over pay and pensions.

Kirkby postman Linford Gibbons was one of many Post Office and Royal Mail staff from across the country that made the trip down to the Houses of Parliament to meet their respective MPs. The mass lobby had been organised by the Communication Workers Union as part of the ongoing campaign to oppose the full privatisation of the Royal Mail.

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Community spirited mums proudly show off renovated park to local MP

July 2 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero paid a visit to Westwood Recreation Ground and met community spirited local mums, child minders and children who played a pivotal role in securing almost £50,000 to renovate the park. 

Local mums and childminders, Katrina Halliday, Vicky Clarke and Dawn Farrow were among those who got together after becoming fed up with the state of the park so they decided to contact local councillor, Liz Mayes and with her help they set up a petition calling for the renovation of the much loved but tired looking park.

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Anti-social behaviour tops the agenda at summer coffee morning for Kirkby residents

July 1 2013

Last weekend (Saturday 29th June) local MP Gloria De Piero hosted yet another busy coffee morning, this time for Kirkby residents at the Bentinck Miners Welfare and anti-social behaviour topped the agenda.

Residents told the MP that they were sick and tired of anti-social behaviour ruining the quality of their lives, with Lindleys Lane and Portland Park identified as particular hot-spots of yob behaviour.

READ THE FULL STORY

Anti-social behaviour tops the agenda at summer coffee morning for Kirkby residents

July 1 2013

Last weekend (Saturday 29th June) local MP Gloria De Piero hosted yet another busy coffee morning, this time for Kirkby residents at the Bentinck Miners Welfare and anti-social behaviour topped the agenda.

Residents told the MP that they were sick and tired of anti-social behaviour ruining the quality of their lives, with Lindleys Lane and Portland Park identified as particular hot-spots of yob behaviour.

READ THE FULL STORY

Gloria writes for the Chad

June 26 2013

What I really love about being the MP for Ashfield is that local people of all ages are so passionate about our community. One little girl from Annesley Woodhouse recently popped a letter into my office because she was so worried about the environment. Cerys Beet, wanted me to write to the Government and ask them to stop cutting down so many trees, her letter was brilliant and the drawings of plants, trees and birds really made her plea come to life. Cerys, if you ever want to meet you and have a chat about this I’ve written back and asked your mum or dad to give me a call to arrange this.

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Gloria donates bottle of Commons wine for Macmillan charity raffle

June 24 2013

Last Saturday afternoon local MP Gloria De Piero popped down to the Sun Inn in Eastwood to take part in a special raffle draw as part of Macmillan Charity Week and helped raise a whopping £800.

The town’s MP was the guest of honour for the afternoon raffle and she did her best to help raise as much money as possible by donating a bottle of House of Commons wine to the draw.

READ THE FULL STORY

Ashfield MP officially opens new Medical Centre in village

June 22 2013

This weekend (22nd June) Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero officially opened a brand new medical centre in Huthwaite.

The MP was asked to do the honours and cut a ribbon over a special plaque which declared Brierley Park Medical Centre on Sutton Road open to members of the public.

READ THE FULL STORY

Gloria writes for the Chad

June 19 2013

I’m worried the Government is getting itself into a right mess with the planning rules. First councils were told to get their local development plans in place within a year. In places where they haven’t managed to do this in time because they’re still talking to local residents or awaiting formal approval – developers can now appeal to the inspectorate to get plans approved even though they haven’t gained local support. This is where I take a rather different view. I believe communities can make these decisions for themselves. It’s the difference between having a say and having it done to you. If the planning system doesn’t have the support of the public it just won’t work.

READ THE FULL STORY

MP attends exciting meeting to develop D.H. Lawrence vision in Eastwood

June 17 2013

Gloria De Piero attended a specially convened meeting at the D.H. Lawrence Heritage Centre, which attempted to build on some of the ideas that came out of the ‘Tourism Summit’ which she hosted last November.

Just over six months ago, Gloria pulled together a number of high profile people and organisations and persuaded them to take part in an effort to boost tourism in the area and the town’s famous links with the literary heavyweight. Representatives from Visit England, English Heritage, Arts Council, Experience Nottinghamshire, East Midlands Museum Service, Nottingham University, Broxtowe Borough Council and D.H. Lawrence Heritage management all attended.

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MP meets staff at Sutton based clothing giant

June 16 2013

Last Friday afternoon Gloria De Piero held an informal discussion with staff from another leading Ashfield business during a visit to Sutton based clothing giant, Crystal Martin International.

Despite the tough economic climate, Crystal Martin remain one of the largest employers in Ashfield and are a real local success story, maintaining a large workforce of around 650 people, which in turn provides a huge boost to the local economy.

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Ashfield MP officially opens £1m electronics manufacturing facility

June 15 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero officially opened a self contained state of the art electronics manufacturing facility at Standard Motor Products Europe Ltd’s Annesley based warehouse.

In recent months the successful automotive firm has made no secret of its desire to expand operations before finally deciding to invest almost one million pounds developing a specialised electronic manufacturing plant within its current warehouse premises in Annesley.

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Gloria writes for the Advertiser

June 14 2013

POTHOLE RESULT - I’m out and about door knocking whenever I can and it is one of my favourite parts of the job because it’s a great chance to find out what’s on local people’s mind. I recently met two residents in Eastwood on the doorstep and they both told me how fed up they were with potholes on Walker Street and Kirby Road and I can certainly understand why. One of the potholes actually damaged the springs in one of the ladies car and cost her over £160 to repair. I got in touch with bosses at Notts County Council straight away and I’m pleased to say that both roads have been inspected and should be repaired within 28 days, with Kirby Road treated as a priority.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

June 12 2013

I’ve had almost a hundred letters from passionate Ashfield folk about the proposed cull of badgers. Bovine TB is a terrible disease and last year resulted in 28,000 cattle being slaughtered, with the estimated cost to the taxpayer likely to reach £1bn in the next decade. However, the decision to proceed with a cull is absolutely the wrong one and the science simply does not support the decision. A cull would be bad for badgers, bad for farmers and bad for us, the taxpayer and that is why I voted against the Government plans.

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Local MP congratulates Ashfield's star apprentices at prestigious ceremony

June 10 2013

Local MP Gloria De Piero met a couple of high flying apprentices from Ashfield after they were honoured for their achievements at a prestigious reception hosted in the House of Lords.

For the second year running West Nottinghamshire College staged the ‘Celebration of Apprenticeships’ event in Westminster and the ceremony showcased thirty outstanding apprentices as they received awards in front of their proud families and employers. The youngsters were selected by the college from its crop of 12,000 apprentices in recognition of their talent dedication and contribution to their workplace.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

June 5 2013

POST OFFICE RESULT – I couldn't begin this week's column with anything else. I’m sure lots of readers will know I've spent the last two years moaning, shouting, arm twisting and quite frankly being a constant pain in the backside of bosses so I’m delighted that the new permanent branch in Kirkby has finally opened its doors. At times it felt like we were never going to get there and I’m really grateful to everyone who has been in touch with me – together we've got our Post Office back. It just goes to show why you should never give up and roll over.

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MP parises Kirkby mum for standing her ground and winning Ombudsman case

June 3 2013

Last Friday (31st May) Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero paid a visit to a Kirkby mum who recently won a case with the Ombudsman after being left with a faulty sofa which injured her daughter, then aged only ten months old, for almost a year and a half.
 
Mum, Rebecca Ashley, originally brought the brand new leather sofa from furniture giant SCS in Mansfield, but after only a couple of weeks she became aware of a fault in the suite after her daughter  suffered cuts and grazes to her arm and wrist whilst reaching round the back of the sofa for a dummy.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

May 29 2013

There's no better feeling than getting a win for someone. A lady from Sutton who had bravely served her country in the armed forces came to see me a few weeks ago. She and fellow veterans who had served with her wanted a space to meet and talk and provide support to each other to deal with the consequences of combat stress. I decided to write to Ashfield District Council on her behalf to see if they could provide such a place. Within days the Council had sourced a generous offer of a room from Portland College who work closely with military personnel. I’m pleased to have been able to play my part and I wish the group well.

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Kirkby students quiz local MP Gloria De Piero in Parliament

May 24 2013

Almost thirty Year Ten students from Kirkby College travelled down to London as part of a special educational visit to the Houses of Parliament and got the chance to quiz Gloria on life as an MP.

The local pupils, all aged between 14 and 15, were given a guided tour of the Parliamentary Estate and got to see democracy up close and in action when they visited Westminster. During their trip, the teenagers were also given a talk about the history and the role of Parliament before getting the chance to grill the Ashfield MP.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

May 22 2013

CAN YOU HELP - Community spirit is something we hear about all the time and I think we have it in abundance in Ashfield. This was no more apparent to me than when I recently met with staff, volunteers and local residents who are all fighting to keep the Tin Hat Centre open. They are desperately seeking financial help and support, no matter how big or small, which would tide them over and secure the long term future of the centre. If there are any local businesses out there that might be able to help or perhaps even become a corporate sponsor then please do get in touch with Paulette, the manager, on 01773 864510. Save our Tin Hat Centre and become a community hero.

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Eastwood MP spots D.H. Lawrence in Parliament

May 21 2013

Local folk are being urged to keep their eyes peeled and stay on the lookout for one of the most celebrated authors of the 20th century, as the number of reported sightings of D.H. Lawrence, continues to grow in locations across Eastwood, Kimberley, Broxtowe and beyond.

Earlier on today (21st May) the writer even made a surprise appearance in London, turning up alongside Eastwood MP Gloria De Piero. The Eagle eyed MP spotted the town’s most famous son taking a quick lunch time break on the riverside terrace at the Houses of Parliament.

READ THE FULL STORY

Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

May 17 2013

I was sad when I read in the Advertiser that Nottinghamshire County Council believes more than 1,400 children in the county are not getting the free school meals they are entitled too. A good school dinner can set kids up for the rest of the day and they should never be frowned upon. One of the things I’ll never tolerate is an outdated view that getting free school meals is a barrier to any future success. As a former free school meal kid myself I know this is nonsense. What better evidence to back this up than when I recently went to one local school and discovered how those receiving free school meals are going from strength to strength and in fact receiving some of the best results in the whole school.

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KARA members shows local MP what Kirkby could lose if development is given the go ahead

May 14 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero joined Liz Shirley of Kirkby Area and Residents’ Association (KARA) on a short walk through countryside which could be affected by a major new housing development.

Earlier this year Nottinghamshire based developers Westerman Homes announced plans to create a major new development in Kirkby and if they are given the green light the Mowlands scheme could include up to 1,800 new houses across almost 170 hectares of land.

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Gloria's Tin Hat Centre intervention secures meetings with local council chiefs

May 13 2013

Last Friday (10th May) Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero joined local campaigners and volunteers at the Tin Hat Centre in Selston to show her support for the struggling charity.

Following an intervention from the MP last month the charity now has two important meetings set up with local council chiefs to discuss its future in the next few weeks. From July the community hub will run out funds to pay for their core costs and the trustees are desperately seeking funding in order to tide them over. They need approximately £3,000 every month to cover the four staff salaries and save the Centre.

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Gloria's expense claims for December 2012 - January 2013

May 11 2013

MPs expense claims have been processed for December 2012 - January 2013 and published by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA).

READ THE FULL STORY

Gloria: Instead of supporting people suffering from the blight of ASB the Government is proposing to weaken powers

May 9 2013

Gloria De Piero MP, Labour’s Shadow Home Office Minister, commenting on the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime & Policing Bill, said:

"This is a Government with no answers to the big challenges facing Britain. Instead of supporting people suffering from the blight of anti-social behaviour (ASB) the Government is proposing to weaken powers and make victims wait for the help they deserve.

"Theresa May proposes to abolish the ASBO and replace it with the weaker IPNA. Breach of an ASBO was a criminal offence. Breach of the new IPNA will not be. The new Community remedy must not be a substitute for court action in serious cases and the Government has failed to heed the advice of the police, dog charities and other campaigners to introduce the Dog Control notice which would help to prevent attacks. Local authorities and enforcement agencies need powers to intervene in cases where they feel they can prevent incidents.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

May 8 2013

One of the things that makes me most angry is when I receive letters from residents about the failure of local agencies to act quickly to deal with nuisance neighbours and anti-social behaviour. It makes my blood boil when I hear that a victim feels THEY are the ones who have to move when it should be the perpetrator. A series of Freedom of Information Requests have revealed that there were 4,770 incidents of anti-social behaviour in Ashfield in the last year and roughly speaking that works out around 40 incidents for every thousand people. The authorities should always act quickly to reduce this serious problem but the Government is turning the clock back with plans to scrap the ASBO and replace it with a weaker power which carries no criminal sanction for a breach.

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Ashfield MP uncovers 255 per cent increase in A&E waiting times and missed targets

May 1 2013

Figures obtained by Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero show that the number of patients waiting more than four hours in A&E departments at Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which includes King’s Mill Hospital, has increased dramatically compared to the same time last year.

The huge increase came to light after Gloria tabled a Parliamentary written question to the Secretary of State for Health to determine how many patients had to wait longer in the accident and emergency wards of Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust for the week ending 14th April 2013 compared to the week ending 15 April 2012.

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Gloria urges Nottinghamshire County Council to get house in order

April 30 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has urged Nottinghamshire County Council to get their house in order after complaining about the length of time she has to wait for a response to her letters sent out on behalf of constituents.

The local MP resorted to e-mailing the chief executive’s office yesterday in an attempt to chase up a response to her own complaint about the delays, which was originally sent by letter, last year and dated 10th December 2012.

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Shadow Minister for Care & Older People meets Ashfield residents to discuss health and care concerns

April 29 2013

Last Friday (April 26th) Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero was joined by Liz Kendall, Shadow Minister for Care and Older People, as she hosted a small discussion to talk about the provision of care for older people.
  
The Shadow Minister and Gloria heard from brother and sister, Andy Pye and Val Doughty who told the two politicians about their eighty year old mum, Ms Pye’s time in a Sutton care home. After just three and a half years the bill already stands at a massive £45,000 and after selling the family home they are increasingly worried about how they will be able to afford to pay for her care over the next few years. The cost of the care has been self-funded so far but the two siblings are now worried as their mum’s savings have now fallen below the £23,250 threshold which should mean now be entitled to financial support from the council. Despite contacting the council weeks ago neither has heard anything back and Gloria is now taking up the case with council bosses.

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Anti-social behaviour is still a problem in our area

April 24 2013

Local MP Gloria De Piero has urged the Government not to scrap the ASBO and called for faster action to help tackle anti-social behaviour in Ashfield.

A detailed breakdown obtained by Freedom of Information Requests from the Shadow Home Office Minister and research by statisticians from the House of Commons Library has revealed new figures, which show in Ashfield there were 4,770 anti-social behaviour incidents recorded by the police in 2012.

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Anti-social behaviour tops the agenda at Gloria's coffee morning

April 22 2013

Last Saturday (20th April) saw the return of Gloria De Piero’s popular coffee morning for Ashfield constituents at the Anchor Centre in Skegby and anti-social behaviour topped the agenda during the hour long chat.

A new round of residents’ surveys was also rolled out to coincide with the first Ashfield coffee morning of the year and dog fouling, road safety and speeding were also brought to the attention of the local MP.

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Shadow Business Secretary visits Ashfield success story

April 19 2013

On Friday (19th April) Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero took Chuka Umunna, Shadow Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills to see leading local firm Synseal
 
Originally set up in 1980 the company is now the largest British owned PVC systems company, contributing significantly to the local economy by employing over seven hundred members of staff and recording a turnover of more than £90 million last year.

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Gloria raises concerns over bus service in rural areas

April 15 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has taken up the cases of two Underwood residents who came to see her at this week’s advice surgery to complain about the lack of evening and weekend bus services available.

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Ashfield pensioner puts her concerns directly to spokeswoman on energy prices

April 12 2013

A Sutton pensioner who previously raised energy prices with local MP Gloria De Piero had the chance to put her concerns directly to Caroline Flint, Shadow Secretary of State for Energy & Climate Change.

The Ashfield MP arranged for Caroline Flint to meet with Mrs Riley at her home on Gilcroft Street, Sutton and they spent half an hour chatting about the ever increasing cost of energy bills over a cup of tea. The spokeswoman for energy was then shocked to find out that Mrs Riley’s latest quarterly energy bills came to over £500, adding to the pensioner’s worries about the cost of heating her home. 

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Shadow Secretary of State for DEFRA joins Gloria in Eastwood

April 11 2013

Gloria De Piero was joined by Mary Creagh, Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. During a busy afternoon the two MPs paid a visit to a food bank run by the Eastwood Volunteer Bureau before finding time to have a chat with the owner of popular Hilltop butchers, Hand & Son.

Gloria arranged for the shadow DEFRA spokeswoman to visit the food bank after being impressed by the work of the manager, Sue Bagshaw and volunteers during a previous visit late last year. Back then the local MP had promised she would invite Mary up to Eastwood to witness for herself the excellent work going on in the in the area and to ask if she could offer the charity some advice given her extensive brief covers the issue.

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MP raises Eastwood lady's concerns over welfare reforms with Iain-Duncan Smith

April 10 2013

Yesterday afternoon (9th April) local MP Gloria De Piero attended a special advice session organised by the Eastwood People’s Initiative and chatted with a number of residents who have been affected by the recent Government welfare reforms.

Gloria was invited to attend one of the Initiative’s first sessions since a raft of new welfare reforms were introduced at the beginning of this month and the MP was on hand to listen to firsthand accounts of how some of the Eastwood residents have been personally affected.

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Gloria visits Eastwood ambulance station following reprieve

April 5 2013

Yesterday (4th April) local MP Gloria De Piero went to Eastwood Ambulance Station to meet staff following the recent announcement by East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS) that the station will be saved from closure.

During the visit Gloria met Leigh Smith, from Giltbrook, who is the clinical lead and has been with the service for over twenty four years. Leigh actually began his career in the control room before becoming a frontline member of staff in 1991 and he told the MP how relieved all of the staff were when it was finally announced that the town’s station was to remain open.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

April 3 2013

Being an MP is about being able to fight the corner of people who come to see me for help or advice. I don’t always win but it never stops me taking up a case. Last week a Sutton pensioner came to see me after he caught a TM Travel bus. His free pass wouldn’t swipe properly so the driver charged him £5 return. On his way back, a different driver told him that shouldn’t have happened and he should have been issued with a £0 concession ticket. The gentleman rang TM Travel to ask for his £5 back and in response they did confirm the first driver was wrong BUT said they have a policy of not issuing refunds so he can’t get his money back! I’ve since written to the chief executive to try and get his money back and I’ll let you know how we get on. Fingers crossed.

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Gloria's expenses

March 28 2013

MPs' latest expense claims have been published by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA).

READ THE FULL STORY

Gloria writes for the Chad

March 27 2013

I was at King’s Mill last week and I was shocked to see a sign that revealed 30,000 people missed an appointment last year and didn’t bother to cancel at a staggering cost of £3m. To put it another way – that money could be used to hire another 125 nurses! We all love our NHS and rightly demand the highest standards of care but love means having respect. If we have to miss a hospital appointment we should do all we can to give the hospital a call to let them know the day before so they can offer the appointment to someone else.

When people do talk to me about healthcare the first thing they usually mention is the kindness of the staff. If you'd like to submit a nominations for the Sherwood Forest Hospitals “People’s Award” to recognise an outstanding hospital employee who provides exceptional service above and beyond the call of duty then email thepeoples.awards@sfh-tr.nhs.uk

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Gloria shows her support for Eastwood attraction during English Tourism week

March 22 2013

Gloria De Piero visited the D.H Lawrence Heritage Centre to show her support for the award winning local attraction as part of English Tourism Week.

The weeklong national initiative has been designed to promote and support attractions throughout England and this week the Birthplace Museum and Heritage Centre have had special themed tours where children can dress up like a Victorian, design bunting and flags and even make their very own Queen Victoria peg doll – Queen Pegotoria!

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Gloria's guest column for the Chad - A Budget Special

March 21 2013

Budget day is a big box office event in the House of Commons. Whereas Prime Ministers Questions is normally the main Parliamentary event of the week, it’s very much relegated to a warm up act on Budget day as MPs are itching to hear what the Chancellor has to say. I was lucky enough to get called for Prime Ministers Questions last week - I say lucky because it’s a total lottery whether or not you are picked to ask a question and though I enter each week my name has only been picked 4 times in nearly 3 years - it really is the luck of the draw. I asked the PM how he planned to spend his millionaires’ tax cut. A bit cheeky I know but I thought it made the point - the PM shouted something rude back. The truth is that I couldn't tell you exactly what his response was because the noise levels are so high inside the Commons Chamber that you genuinely miss large chunks of what's being said - it’s much, much louder than it appears on the TV. On budget day MPs are even more boisterous. The Speaker does his best to calm the atmosphere quipping that the panto season isn't due to start for 8 months and so MPs should stop auditioning. In truth the forecasts for whether things are going to pick up were pretty bleak - I genuinely hope those forecasts are wrong because they aren't just raw numbers and data - its peoples’ lives.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

March 20 2013

One of the most common problems constituents raise with me is the dreaded pothole and it seems as though as soon as one is fixed another one pops up. That’s why I wasn’t surprised when a report this week found that ‘one in three roads are poor, very poor or terrible’. I know it’s an issue that drives motorists crazy because of the number of times it comes up when I meet people on the doorstep. I regularly write to bosses at Notts County Council to complain on behalf of fed up folk so if you’ve got a pothole problem near you then get in touch and I’ll ask when they plan to sort it.

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Gloria drops in Kirkby work-club session to find out what is being done to tackle unemployment

March 18 2013

Last Friday morning (15th March), Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero dropped into one of the special work club sessions that are run from Kirkby Library every Friday morning to find out more about the role it is playing in giving people the skills and confidence necessary to get back into work.
 
The work clubs which are run by Nottinghamshire County Council offer people searching for work in the area guidance on all manner of work related topics; including top tips on CV writing, interview skills and techniques, training opportunities as well hosting guest speakers from local businesses who offer firsthand advice and expertise.

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MP joins in the fun at Kirkby school for Red Nose Day

March 15 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero joined in the fun with pupils and staff from Jeffries Primary and Nursery School as they dressed up to raise as much money as possible for Comic Relief 2013 this afternoon (15th March).
 
This year staff and children of all ages donated £1 to come into school with crazy haircuts, wigs and red noses. Over 200 pupils attend the school on Vernon Road, Kirkby, and the head teacher, Helen Bent, revealed the school managed to raise a fantastic £210, eclipsing the previous amount raised last year.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

March 13 2013

My parliamentary inbox and postbag are always brimming with letters and e-mails from constituents on all manner of different subjects. One of my main jobs each day is to go through them and decide how I can help. Last week, a lady from Sutton wrote to me complaining about the behaviour of MP’s during Prime Minister’s Questions and I have to agree - it isn't our finest hour. I've always felt that the braying Punch and Judy type of politics is one of the things that puts people off politicians and politics in general. I wish it was in my gift to change it. Sadly it isn't so I’ve written to the Speaker on her behalf to let him know exactly what she thinks. I’ll let you know when he replies. It doesn't matter what issue you've got or who it is with, if you have a concern then I’ll always try to raise it with those in charge, politicians included.

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MP urges Government action to speed up recovery

March 11 2013

Last Friday afternoon (March 8th) Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero met with bosses at Pinxton based construction firm Van Elle to discuss plans for expansion in Kirkby after the firm recently acquired a new site in the town.

The local ground engineering contractor is going from strength to strength and during the meeting the company revealed ambitious plans to open a new site by the end of August, which will create several jobs in the area and boost the local economy.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

March 6 2013

POST OFFICE UPDATE – Those of you who read my column will know that I’ve been constantly badgering Post Office bosses in an effort to secure a permanent branch in the precinct area in Kirkby. It’s been hard work and there have been a couple of false dawns but after writing to them once again the Regional Network Manager has now told me we are on the verge of having a service to be proud of in the town. A public consultation will begin on March 7th and they are looking at having a branch open towards the end of May. It’s taken much longer than any of us would have liked but it just goes to show perseverance pays off. Thanks again to everyone who has contacted me and helped keep up the pressure - together it looks like we’ve finally got a result.

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Crisis looms as demand for advice from Eastwood CAB increases ahead of welfare reforms

March 4 2013

Last week Eastwood MP Gloria De Piero met with Sue Maslowska, District Manager of Broxtowe Citizens Advice Bureau to learn more about some of the most common and pressing issues facing Eastwood users of the service this year.

Both service managers at the Eastwood CAB were also present during the meeting, as the MP set about finding out why bosses at the charity are concerned they are starting to see a steady increase in the number of users at the Bureau in Wellington Place.

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MP donates much needed items during visit to local food bank

March 1 2013

Gloria De Piero visited the new storage unit used by Ashfield Voluntary Action in Sutton to find out more about their latest work, which now includes running a busy food bank to support people in Ashfield who are in crisis.

During her visit to the depot, Gloria met with Janet from Ashfield Voluntary Action and Steve the food bank manager, as well as a couple of volunteers who help ensure that the food parcels reach those people most in need, before donating her very own supply of tinned and preserved foods.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

27 February 2013

King’s Mill Hospital has been in the headlines again after it was reported that the trust had higher than average mortality rates. I know people will be concerned and anyone who wants me to raise the case of a loved one with hospital bosses should contact me. I am pleased that there's going to be an independent inspection because Ashfield deserves the best healthcare available. I read in last week’s Chad that hospital chiefs have said we have no need to be afraid and I that steps have already been taken which have resulted in improvements. I’ll be monitoring the situation closely.

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Gloria writes to Secretary of State over Pension reforms as Ashfield women set to lose out

25 February 2013

Local MP Gloria De Piero has written to Iain Duncan-Smith, the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, after House of Commons Library research recently revealed that around seven hundred women in Ashfield are set to lose out following the government’s pension reforms.

The Ashfield MP asked local women who will be affected to get in touch with her office so that she could raise their cases directly with the secretary of state and highlight the injustice of the reforms. Several women have since been in contact with Gloria and she has promised to raise their specific cases with Iain Duncan-Smith.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

22 February 2013

The horsemeat fiasco has made us all feel a bit queasy. I stopped eating meat for a bit in my teens when mad cow disease was dominating the headlines - back then it was farmers who were to blame. Today it’s many of the ready meal manufacturers who are in the firing line. One positive to come out of all this will be that we return to buying meat from our local butchers. Philip, owner of Ken Hand & Son Butchers at Hilltop says he has seen a big increase in sales over the last week or so: “We might not be able to compete with supermarkets but we can reassure our customers that we can trace anything they buy right back to farm it came from. We’ve used our suppliers for thirty years and sales of stewing steak and mince have gone through the roof”. It’s also good news for those people who cook their own food rather than rely on the 'prick, prick' and a ping of the microwave to deliver a ready meal. There's a lesson in there for all of us.

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MP hosts informal drop-in session with workers at Sutton based factory Crown Aersols

20 February 2013

Last week Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero was at Sutton based firm Crown Aerosols after being invited to visit the site by staff earlier in the year.

This event marked a new way for Gloria to listen to constituents and each time she visits a workplace she will now ask bosses to set aside time and space for her to meet with staff as she has always put a high premium on being an accessible MP who listens.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

13 February 2013

Pensions are a complicated business at the best of times and few of us understand the ins and outs of each and every detail, so when the Government announced a new flat rate £144 pension for everyone in 2017 I was interested. Unfortunately, I’ve now learnt that around 700 women in Ashfield born in 1952 or 1953 won’t be eligible when it comes into effect and they will be nearly £2,000 worse off than their husbands, brothers and other men born during the same period. If you’re one of the women affected I’d love to hear from you so I can raise this directly with government ministers.

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Local pupils tell their MP what their priorities are for Eastwood

11 February 2013

Last Saturday (9th February) saw the return of Gloria De Piero’s popular coffee morning and the first one of the New Year for Eastwood constituents which took place at Beauvale Methodist Church Hall.

A new round of residents’ surveys was also rolled out to coincide with the event and Gloria said; “It was a great turn-out, packed full of people who are were so passionate and enthusiastic about their local community. These events give residents of all ages the chance to tell me what they really think about where they live, both good and bad and hopefully by coming together we can try and make a real difference”.

On the back of Gloria’s own residents’ survey, one young community spirited girl, Paige Amos, from Coach Drive, Eastwood, decided to conduct her own survey among fellow Year 10 Pupils at Eastwood Comprehensive. The 15 year old’s questionnaire was made up of five questions; what would you like to see introduced in Eastwood for teenagers, are there enough activities available in Eastwood, are there enough entertainment facilities in Eastwood, are there enough performing arts facilities in Eastwood and finally do you have any other suggestions to improve Eastwood.

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MP becomes landmark member of Friends of Portland College Scheme

8 February 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero became the landmark member of the Friends of Portland College Scheme after the College invited her to sign up and become the 1,500th member of the exciting initiative.

During the visit the MP was presented with a specially designed oversized membership card by the College principal, Dr. Mark Dale and students, Daniel & Marcus to celebrate the college reaching the amazing milestone. The Friends of Portland scheme is a free membership scheme which enables members of the Portland community to keep in touch with College news together with providing opportunities to get involved at events. Current members include former students from the 63 years of the College’s history, family and friends, college staff, governors and a wide range of other enthusiastic supporters from the local community and beyond.

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Eastwood school children teach local MP how to blog

4 February 2013

Local MP Gloria De Piero was the special guest in the Year 5 Class at Eastwood’s Brookhill Leys Primary School last Friday morning (February 1st) and during her trip she discovered more about their popular interactive online student blog.

On arrival Gloria was given a guided tour of the school by head teacher Jacqui Sainsbury and Governor Brain Griffin before being introduced to the thirty boys and girls who make up the Year 5 class, affectionately known as the Armadillo’s. The computer whizz-kids help maintain and run the online blog under the expert guidance of their teacher, Mr Bradley, who is also the ICT co-ordinator at the school and during the busy visit they taught Gloria exactly how their blog works and revealed some of the secrets of its recent success. The class even let the Eastwood MP write and upload her own message on to the blog which can be viewed by going online and following the link - www.thearmadillos.wordpress.com

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Gloria writes for the Chad

30 January 2013

I was chatting with my pal, Labour politician and Dancing on Ice Star, Oona King about her partner on the show, Kirkby’s very own Mark Hanretty. She had this exclusive message for Chad readers; “He’s not just a local hero, he’s a national hero. To perform on TV with a dislocated shoulder proves he’s both courageous and professional. More to the point, you couldn’t find a nicer man, or a more beautiful ice skater. In fact one of the sad things about leaving Dancing on Ice was the circumstances of my last dance with Mark – for nearly 3 months we had a laugh together most days. I just wanted one last enjoyable dance with him during the show, but it didn’t work out that way. Instead I thought I nearly killed him but I’m thrilled he’ll now be a hands-on dad from the very beginning with his new baby, so Mark and his lovely wife Kathy might even thank me for tripping him up!” Oona told me she'll be coming to visit Mark soon. We look forward to welcoming you to Ashfield Oona.

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MP meets trainee mechanics at West Nottinghamshire College's Ashfield Centre

28 January 2013

Last Friday (January 25th January) local MP Gloria De Piero went to the Ashfield Centre, which is part of Vision West Nottinghamshire College, to chat with students aged between 16 and 19 who are doing Entry & Level 1 Motor Vehicle BTECs. The MP wanted to find out how the youngsters are benefitting from this unique centre designed to engage young people who otherwise would be at risk of not being in education, employment or training (NEETs).
 
Gloria had been eager to visit the site and discover what one of the country’s largest providers of education and apprenticeships is doing to help tackle unemployment and youth disengagement after official figures released last week revealed that long term youth unemployment in Ashfield is now up 120 per cent since the General Election in May 2010.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

25 January 2013

I’m hoping 2013 is the year we see good things happen to our high street. Broxtowe Council say it’s a priority to offer good terms for new businesses to start up and I applaud their efforts but I also think we can do our bit too because new businesses like Dunn-Lite need our support so they can grow and provide jobs. We need to nurture businesses like this so this week I’d like to single out a few I use regularly. Thank you to the Sun Inn for making my friends comfortable when they came to visit in December, to Geoff at the framers and arts shop, next door are Katie and the team at Style 2000 who look after my hair and it’s great to have a dry cleaners and the shoe heeling shop a little further down Nottingham Road. You will no doubt have your own favourites, so to all our local independent retailers who provide jobs as well as a fantastic service - we don't know what we'd do without you!

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Eastwood MP speaks out in Parliament over closure threat to ambulance station

23 January 2013

On Monday during a debate in the House of Commons, which focused on East Midlands Ambulance Service, Eastwood MP Gloria De Piero raised the possible loss of the town’s ambulance station with Health Minister and Broxtowe MP Anna Soubry.

During the Commons clash Gloria said; “The loss of ambulance stations in semi-rural areas is a particular concern. The town of Eastwood in my constituency faces the loss of its ambulance station. Does my hon. Friend agree that closing an ambulance station cannot help already poor response times?”

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Funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund helps Notts Ex & Retired Miners set up website

22 January 2013

Funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund has helped the Notts Ex & Retired Miners set up a brand new website which celebrates their fantastic heritage. Why don't you take a look.

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Gloria urges greater Lottery spending in Ashfield

18 January 2013

This afternoon Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero visited the Carousel Under 5’s Nursery in Sutton to take a look at two recently completed graffiti themed murals, which were designed by at least two youngsters from each of Ashfield’s secondary schools.

Last year the North Ashfield Schools Behaviour and Attendance Partnership (NASBAP) based at the S.P.A.C.E Centre in Kirkby was awarded £9,500 as part of the Awards for All grant from the Lottery and the money was used to set up the community art project. All of the young people involved had been identified as being at risk of social exclusion or anti-social behaviour and the grant allowed the group to create the fantastic murals following a series of art sessions that last six weeks and included a special research trip to Nottingham.

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Mums' say hats off to Tin Hat and Active Ants

17 January 2013

This afternoon (17th January) Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero hosted a discussion that focused on the future of childcare and it gave a number of local mums the opportunity to tell their MP what they would like to see from Labour’s future childcare and education policy.

The event took place at the sports hall opposite the Tin Hat Centre in Selston and a number of women who use the Sure Start centre at the Tin Hat and the services at the neighbouring sports hall attended. The busy mums took time out from the afternoon session of ‘Active Ants’ to chat to their MP about some of the most difficult challenges mums in Ashfield face and what more can be done to help.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

16 January 2013

I’d like to start my first Chad column of the year by wishing everyone a very happy New Year. I’ve decided that my New Year's resolution is to never take no for an answer. It worked in getting our walk-in-centre back, it worked when the Post Office were reluctant to put a temporary post office in the precinct in Kirkby and I have to say it worked for Peter Jankiwskj from Huthwaite who I was reading about in the Chad over Christmas. Peter got his money back after complaining to furniture store SCS after his new sofa fell apart within weeks. SCS initially offered Peter a 50 per cent refund which he rightly turned down. Well done to Peter for standing his ground and good work from the Chad once again for taking up the case.

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MP will continue to raise residents' concerns

14 January 2013

On Tuesday 22nd January a decision will be made by Nottinghamshire County Council reagrding the proposed development of land at Two Oaks Farm, Derby Road, Mansfield by the Mansfield Sand Company. The proposal includes the extraction and processing of silica sand and the provision of a new site access road, landscaping and screening bunds.

Although Nottinghamshire County Council are no longer taking representation I have been contacted by a number of constituents about the impact the development may have on the surrounding area including concerns surrounding possible air pollution and traffic congestion. If other people who live nearby have similar concerns then please don't hesitate to get in touch with my office this week and I will still write to the Council to make sure they are aware of the strength of the feeling on this issue.

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Gloria hosts hard hitting discussion on unemployment

12 January 2013

Last Friday afternoon (11th January) Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero met with a number of young unemployed adults to hear their emotive and firsthand accounts on a variety of hard hitting issues including; unemployment, homelessness, health and education and training.

Four young adults who have been out of work for a long period of time had been invited to take part and let the local MP know exactly what problems they have encountered and some of the challenges they face as they strive to get on and make a success of their lives. Hayley and Jay were graduates with degrees in animation and design whilst Darren and Dan have both been to college before struggling to find work or being unable to work for a variety of different reasons.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

11 January 2013

I’d like to start my first Chad column of the year by wishing everyone a very happy New Year. I’ve decided that my New Year's resolution is to never take no for an answer. It worked in getting our walk-in-centre back, it worked when the Post Office were reluctant to put a temporary post office in the precinct in Kirkby and I have to say it worked for Peter Jankiwskj from Huthwaite who I was reading about in the Chad over Christmas. Peter got his money back after complaining to furniture store SCS after his new sofa fell apart within weeks. SCS initially offered Peter a 50 per cent refund which he rightly turned down. Well done to Peter for standing his ground and good work from the Chad once again for taking up the case.

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Gloria's expenses - August 2012 - September 2012

10 January 2013

MPs' expense claims processed in August 2012 - September 2012 have been published by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA).

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Gloria urges action to stop Ashfield pub closures and gives Bagthorpe's Red Lion a plug in Parliament

10 January 2013

Yesterday afternoon (January 9th) during a debate on a statutory code of practice for pub companies in the House of Commons, local MP, Gloria De Piero, urged cross-party action in an attempt to prevent further pub closures in Ashfield.

Speaking in the Commons, Gloria told fellow MPs that; “The debate is not about playing party politics but about agreeing a course of action to save our pubs. In the past five years, we have lost nine pubs in Kirkby and Sutton and I do not want to lose another nine in the next five years, so I am pleased the House has come together to agree measures”.

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Gloria presses Notts County Council over hold up in post box replacement

9 January 2013

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has written to bosses at Nottinghamshire County Council to urge them to grant permission to Royal Mail so that a new post box on Kirkby Folly Road, Sutton, can be installed as soon as possible.

The original post box was damaged by a lorry last summer and is yet to be replaced because Royal Mail are still waiting for Nottinghamshire County Council to grant them permission for work to be carried out. The Chief Executive’s office at Royal Mail has since told the local MP that they first submitted their request back in September last year and chased it up again in November, but they are still waiting for the Council to give them the go ahead.

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Gloria picks Abbey Hill school girl as Christmas card competition winner

17 December 2012

Ashfield MP, Gloria De Piero, visited Abbey Hill Primary and Nursery School in Kirkby and surprised one lucky pupil when she revealed the winner of her annual Christmas card competition.

The judging took place last Friday and it took Gloria and representatives from the Chad and local firm Crystal Martin almost an hour to choose year 4 pupil, Jenifer Loyns, aged nine, as the overall winner of the annual card competition.

At the beginning of the first lesson, Gloria surprised Jenifer in front of the rest of her class, staff and her proud mum by declaring her as this year’s winner before presenting the nine year old girl with a House of Commons Teddy Bear and a special certificate to celebrate her fantastic artwork.

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Gloria raises Community Hospital ward closures in Parliament

13 December 2012

Yesterday afternoon during a heated debate on the NHS, Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero raised the issue of the ward closures at the community hospital in Kirkby-in-Ashfield.

During the Commons clash Gloria said; “In Ashfield, there are proposals to close down wards at the community hospital. If the closure goes ahead, the situation will be particularly difficult for some patients who suffer from severe dementia, as their relative will have to travel 17 miles to see them. Does the hon. Gentleman agree that that is unacceptable?”

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Gloria writes for the Chad

12 December 2012

When I’ve been back home in Ashfield I’ve got well and truly into the festive spirit. The events in Kirkby and Sutton really started me off and I have to say that all of the volunteers really pulled out all of the stops. Not only did the stalls have some great gifts but they were raising cash for good causes as well. I bought my Mum and Dad a beautiful Christmas card from a stall in Sutton Centre and a cake recipe book from Teversal Football Club’s stall in Portland Square, whilst the wine and water game was an absolute revelation too. It was £1 a go and you chose a wrapped bottle which was either wine or water. £8 later I finally got what I wanted!

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Gloria grilled by radio stars of the future at Sutton based Takeover Radio

10 December 2012

Last Friday (7th December) Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero was interviewed live on takeover Radio on the Boo & Bob show by two local sisters who have their heart set on a career on the airwaves. The two budding radio presenters, Lily aged nine and Lucy aged fourteen, are currently honing their skills at the Sutton based station and they quizzed the Ashfield MP about the area, her job and what she likes doing in her spare time.

After her live appearance on the Boo and Bob show, Gloria then took part in a pre-recorded interview with John and Darren. The two young men joined Takeover Radio earlier this year as part of a work experience scheme and they had prepared a number of challenging questions focusing on life in Westminster and Gloria’s achievements as MP.

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Ashfield MP gets into the Christmas spirit

7 December 2012

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero joined the crowds in Kirkby and watched on excitedly as the town began the countdown to the big Christmas tree lights switch on.

Earlier on in the afternoon the local MP made her way to the Festival Hall which was decked out in decorations and filled with craft and activity stalls as part of the Kirkby Town Centre Christmas Festival.

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MP seeks meeting with Chancellor

6 December 2012

Yesterday afternoon during a debate on the Autumn Statement, Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero challenged the Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, over the failure of the Regional Growth Fund in Ashfield. This came about after a recent Parliamentary written question tabled last month by the Labour MP revealed that no projects in the constituency had been selected to receive funding. 

During the Commons clash, Gloria told the Chancellor the Government’s flagship scheme had so far ‘not delivered a penny in Ashfield, and local business leaders across the East Midlands are saying that the scheme is just not working’. Gloria then demanded to know what changes the Chancellor was going to make to ensure that her constituents benefit from the Regional Growth Fund as well.

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Gloria writes for the Advertiser

5 December 2012

Public life comes with its own stresses and strains as local Councillor Milan Radulovic will testify. It’s not very nice when someone who you have worked with and respect is portrayed as a benefit cheat but that's exactly what happened to Milan earlier this year. BUT last week officials at the DWP admitted they had made a mistake and have now apologised for the ‘clerical error’. The Judge at the Crown Court who was dealing with the matter told Mr Radulovic he “could leave court without a stain on his character”. Milan, you have served your community well over the years - I hope this terrible episode does not deter you from continuing in public service.

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MP backs Ashfield Allstars fundraising efforts

4 December 2012

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero visited Ashfield Allstars Cheerleading Squad in Selston an effort kick-start an appeal for extra funding that will make it possible for the youngsters to take part in national competitions next year.

The cheerleading squad was originally set up in March this year by Caroline Wilson, Ali Stothard-Brown and Lisa Dalley from Selston, who decided it would be a great activity for youngsters to get involved with, helping them keep fit and at the same time keeping them out trouble.

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Gloria cuts birthday cake as The Tin Hat centre celebrates 10th birthday

2 December 2012

Yesterday Gloria De Piero cut a special birthday cake to mark the 10th anniversary of The Tin Hat Centre in Selston.

To celebrate the 10th anniversary of the popular community centre and given that Saturday was the first day of December the Tin Hat Centre decided to throw a Christmas Fayre. The event included a number of stalls, pampering, a Santa’s Toy Box Grotto by Selston High School and festive home-made food, tea and coffee will be served in the café. There was something for all of the family and the local Sure Start group which uses the building also put on a number of activities to keep the younger visitors entertained as well.

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Ashfield MP joins the festive sun in Sutton

1 December 2012

Earlier today Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero was at Portland Square as the town celebrated the start of the festive season and the countdown to the big light switch on.

This year the celebrations had been organised by members of the Sutton Town Centre Group and a special two day event began yesterday.

Gloria was invited by Liz Barrett, from the group, to come to the town centre and discover what festive treats were on offer as well as chatting to some of the local people behind the event. A variety of activities took place throughout the day, including; a Christmas quiz, a dance off and live singing before Paralympic hero Ollie Hynd switched on the lights just after 4pm.

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Eastwood MP kick-starts Christmas food parcel appeal

30 November 2012

Today Eastwood MP Gloria De Piero visited the Eastwood Volunteer Bureau and donated number of items including festive biscuits, tins of food and also soup which will now be packed into festive food parcels and distributed locally the week before Christmas.

In recent months the Eastwood Volunteer Bureau has seen a sharp increase in the number of food parcels distributed locally and the charity are now donating thirty parcels a week to people who need a helping hand. As Christmas rapidly approaches the Bureau are appealing to generous members of the public for any items that can be used in their special festive food parcels and which will go out alongside the normal parcels.

To be able to reach their target and deliver enough Christmas food parcels the Bureau estimate that they need almost double the amount of food they usually use. Any items donated will be sorted into food parcels with about a dozen items in each.

During the visit the local MP also had the chance to chat to Eastwood resident Marlene, a volunteer, to find out more about the appeal that she runs with the help of Robert and Carol and the other staff and volunteers at the Bureau.

Speaking after the visit Gloria said: “Times are still quite tough for some people and the demand unfortunately doesn’t seem to be showing any signs of slowing down any time soon. Christmas is a special time of year and this is a special appeal and I’m hoping that Eastwood folk will rally to the challenge and help out by donating whatever they can to this worthy cause. It doesn’t matter whether it is just one tin or a couple of mince pies all of it will make a huge difference this Christmas”.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

28 November 2012

What a farce the Police Commissioner election was. Turnout was low and only about 1 in 7 of you bothered to vote. Time and again on the doorstep people told me either they didn’t have enough information, didn’t know the elections were happening, didn’t support them or didn’t want to go out in the dark to vote. The Government spent £100m on these elections. That money could have been spent on 3,000 police constable jobs and protecting front line services which is what everybody wants.

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Local MP urges Eastwood folk to respond to ambulance proposals

26 November 2012

Eastwood MP Gloria De Piero has urged residents from Eastwood and the surrounding areas who have yet to respond to take part in the East Midlands Ambulance Service ‘Being the Best’ consultation which is asking the public for their views on the future of the service.

Under the proposals the town’s ambulance station could close along with every other station in Nottinghamshire - with the exception of one in the city and one at king’s Mill Hospital in Sutton-in-Ashfield. Instead 131 community ambulance posts, standby points and hubs will replace the existing 66 stations across the region. Whilst Eastwood is on the list to base an ambulance in the form of a community ambulance post an exact location is yet to be decided.

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School pupils tell MP what their priorities are

22 November 2012

Gloria De Piero went to Greenwood Primary and Nursery School in Kirkby as part of Parliament Week, an exciting initiative designed to explain how and why Parliament matters to everyone in every community.

The Ashfield MP spent half an hour with forty five pupils from the year six class at the school – some of whom asked questions about why Gloria became an MP, what was the longest debate in Parliament and who kept MPs in order in the House of Commons chamber and what she thought of Nadine Dorries MP, time in the jungle on ‘I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here'.

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Gloria writes to Health Secretary and regulator over changes to Community Hospital

21 November 2012

Earlier this week Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero wrote to the Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt and the health regulator, Monitor, over the proposals to close and move the four wards currently located at the Community Hospital in Kirkby-in-Ashfield elsewhere.

The changes are likely to see the Community Hospital’s 16 bed stroke rehabilitation ward and the 20 bed Shelley Ward for dementia patients transferred to King’s Mill Hospital. The Chatsworth, a 16 bed in-patient ward for short stay injury rehabilitation is likely to be moved to Mansfield Community Hospital and the 10 bed Bronte Ward for dementia patients will go to a facility at Highbury Hospital in Bulwell.

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Gloria to host tourism summit in Eastwood

20 November 2012

Eastwood MP Gloria De Piero is to host a specially organised tourism summit in the town at the end of next week (Friday 30th November). Gloria has pulled together a number of high profile people and organisations and persuaded them to take part in an effort to boost tourism in the area and the town’s famous links with D.H. Lawrence are expected to be at the forefront of the agenda.

Representatives from Visit England, English Heritage, Arts Council, Experience Nottinghamshire, East Midlands Museum Service, Nottingham University, Broxtowe Borough Council and D.H. Lawrence Heritage management are amongst those who have agreed to take part.

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Gloria visits Springbank Primary School to show her support for Children in Need

19 November 2012

Last Friday (16th November) local MP Gloria De Piero joined children and staff at Eastwood’s Springbank Primary School to show her support for their fundraising activities for this year’s Children in Need.

On the afternoon of the famous fundraising day, Gloria visited the charity minded pupils as they donated 50p and donned fancy dress instead of coming to school in their usual uniform and there was no shortage of willing kids ready to dress up and celebrate the great cause.

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Gloria backs calls to show respect to shop workers

16 November 2012

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero visited staff at the Co-Op store in Selston to help highlight the shop-workers union, USDAW’s ‘Freedom of Fear’ campaign.

Gloria was delighted to give her public backing to the campaign and even donned a special t-shirt alongside staff to help promote the campaign which is calling on shoppers to show respect to all retail workers across the sector. During the visit the local MP was met by Sharon Sheriff, Operations Manager, Belinda Adamiec, Senior Risk Manager and staff from the shop floor and also given a short guided tour of the site.

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MP takes boss of new partnership to meet with local businesses

13 November 2012

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero took the boss of the new partnership tasked with helping drive economic growth in the area to meet with Kirkby business owner Zoe Thompson.

At the beginning of the morning Gloria met with Peter Richardson, Chair of the region’s new Local Enterprise Partnership, D2N2 and discussed plans for the economic development of the constituency. The meeting had been set up at the request of the local MP who was eager to discuss ideas as well as finding out what the new body can do to support much needed economic growth in Ashfield.

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Gloria to vote for delay in fuel duty increase

12 November 2012

Later on this evening (12th November) Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero is to vote for a delay in fuel duty increase at least until April in the House of Commons and give some much needed relief to millions of motorists.

The crippling 3p per litre rise is due to come in at the start of the year but Labour has put forward a Commons motion calling for a three-month freeze in the levy and the Ashfield MP will vote alongside colleagues to postpone the increase.

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Gloria: Government's promise on the NHS counts for nothing

8 November 2012

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has slammed the Government for cutting 550 frontline nurses in the East Midlands. The Government came into power promising to protect frontline NHS jobs but the evidence against that claim is stacking up, not just in the East Midlands but across the country.

Statistics released by the Health and Social Care Information Centre this week show that the number of qualified nursing, midwifery and health visiting staff employed by the NHS has fallen by 6,191 since Cameron became Prime Minister in May 2010.

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Gloria launches school Christmas card competition

5 November 2012

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has launched her annual school Christmas card competition and the local politician has invited every primary and infant school in the constituency to take part and help design her personal Christmas card this year.
 
Rather than using the standard parliamentary Christmas card, Gloria wants to showcase the talent of local school children in the area instead. On December 7th a panel of local judges will then decide the winning card and one lucky child will see their very own design printed on the front of Gloria’s Christmas cards.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

2 November 2012

The loss of nearly 150 jobs at local firm Beamlight Automotive is a devastating blow to the area - some have worked for the vehicle and train seating maker for nearly thirty years. To be told you have no job to go back to through no fault of your own must be incredibly hard but to be told you’ve still got to wait a couple of weeks until you receive last month’s wage is just wrong. After the company went into administration I wrote to bosses to say how concerned I was about the situation and I’m even more concerned now. Though Beamlight isn’t in my constituency I know a lot of my constituents worked there. If you’ve been affected and would like support please do get in touch with my office and I’ll do all I can to help.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

31 October 2012

In recent weeks I've been talking to people about why they hate politics and politicians. Thank you to those at Jacksdale Miners Welfare bingo night for giving me their views. I was struck by the comments about some politicians being out of touch and a feeling that too many politicians don't understand their lives. I'm a hundred per cent determined that I never become one of those out of touch politicians that people complain about. I think one of the biggest problems with politics is that it’s not open enough. I remember 32 year old Frank who I met that night saying he thought that people needed qualifications to become politicians. I think too many think going into politics is a career like the law or the media. I disagree - it’s a passion for standing up for people that matters and a desire to stand up for your community and your country - they are the only qualifications needed for the job. We need more people from normal backgrounds in politics - politics shouldn't be the preserve of a small elite club - having more secretaries and builders and posties and dinner ladies in there would absolutely transform the place for the better.

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Anti-social behaviour top concern among Sutton residents

29 October 2012

Last Saturday (27th October) Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero hosted her final coffee morning of the year for Sutton residents) at The New Cross Community Hall. A new round of residents’ surveys was also rolled out to coincide with the event and once again the information provided some extremely useful information which the MP has now promised to act on.

Anti-social behaviour and problems caused by traffic were once again right at the top of the agenda and the results from the completed surveys revealed residents wanted to see action taken as soon as possible to try and tackle some of the recurring problems.

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Gloria takes up fight against breast cancer

26 October 2012

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero is backing the fight against breast cancer by taking part in the Breast Cancer Campaign’s award winning fundraiser ‘wear it pink’ day and she now wants constituents to join her.

Now in its 10th year, ‘wear it pink’ on Friday 26th October will see supporters from all over the country in schools, colleges and businesses embracing the event’s the event’s new theme – superheroes. The theme stems from the charity’s belief that everybody who joins the fight from people affected by breast cancer, to Breast Cancer Campaign scientists and all ‘wear it pink participants – is a superhero.

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Gloria lends helping hand at chairty auction

23 October 2012

Last weekend Gloria De Piero turned auctioneer and lent a helping hand at a local charity auction which had been organised by the Eastwood Volunteer Bureau in an attempt to raise some much needed funds.

Gloria had been asked to be the guest auctioneer at the special event by Sue Bagshaw, manager of Eastwood Volunteer Bureau and the local MP did her best to start a bidding war as she helped auction off several prized items including paintings and pottery at Our Lady of Good Counsel Catholic Church Hall in Eastwood.

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Ashfield MP backs campaign to end loneliness

22 October 2012

Gloria De Piero has given her support to Nottingham & Nottinghamshire Age UK’s campaign to ‘End Loneliness’. The campaign has been set up to ensure that as many people as possible in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire are doing all they can to tackle the factors that cause loneliness.

Gloria said: “I wholeheartedly support the campaign to end loneliness. Through small acts of kindness we can make a difference and alleviate loneliness in older people’s lives. My mum and dad are getting on now and I make sure I ring them at least once a week. It doesn't take much to check on our neighbours and loved ones”.

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MP interviewed by local school girl

20 October 2012

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero was put through her paces when she was interviewed by local school girl Sophie Gregson who is part of a year six team who run the school newspaper at Greenwood Primary School.

Sophie who is ten years old, arranged to interview the Labour MP at the end of Gloria’s most recent coffee morning which took place at the Homesteads in Kirkby-in-Ashfield on Saturday. The budding reporter had come well prepared and had a number of tough questions she was ready to ask Gloria.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

18 October 2012

Recent events at King’s Mill hospital suggest there's been a catastrophic failure of governance and current investigations must be full and thorough. New hospital bosses need to find a solution to fears over the long term financial future of the hospital and they need to ensure checks are in place to avoid a repeat of the blunders with breast cancer treatment. We need stability, ambition - we need the best management the NHS has to offer. One lady who has been affected came to see me last week. She and her husband are understandably worried and angry but they want answers too. They want to know why these errors took so long to come to light, and why when they did, it took so long for women like her to be contacted. I’ve written to the new chief executive who started on Monday to find out.

If any other women who have been affected would like to talk to me in confidence and ask me to raise any points about their own care with the hospital I'd be very happy to do so. I’ll be meeting the new chief executive and chairman very soon so please call my office on 01623 720399 or email me at gloria.depiero.mp@parliament.uk if you'd like to pass on any information.

I was encouraged when new King’s Mill chairman, Chris Mellor said last week, 'it is my absolute priority to take swift action to bring about improvements in the Trust’s performance’. Together we'll keep him to his word.

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MP opens new community shop in Stanton Hill

15 October 2012

On Saturday 13th October Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero was at the Ashfield Community Sign Post in Stanton-Hill with local Police and Crime Commissioner candidate Paddy Tipping to officially open the brand new community shop.

The local MP completed the formalities and declared the shop officially open with Mr Tipping by cutting a ribbon across the doorway. Gloria had been asked to do the honours by local volunteers who after weeks of hard work thought it would be a fitting way to declare the shop officially up and running.

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Gloria donates tins and bulbs during visit to Brinsley Primary School

12 October 2012

On Friday local MP Gloria De Piero paid a visit to Brinsley Primary School to donate a number of items including tins of food for the school Harvest Festival as well as garden bulbs which will be used in a special community project the school are working towards entering.

Speaking just afterwards Gloria said: “All of the staff and all of the kids at the school are carrying out some great work in the local community. It’s brilliant to see so many enthusiastic people who are determined to make a real difference on their own door-step and they are certainly doing Brinsley proud. It was lovely to meet everyone and I couldn’t help but come away feeling very impressed. Keep up the good work guys and I look forward to hearing more about your projects in the future”.

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Gloria urges folk to nominate local businesses for the 'Rural Oscars'

8 October 2012

The eighth annual Countryside Alliance Awards are now open to public nomination and Gloria is urging the local community to get nominating local businesses.

The Countryside Alliance Awards nicknamed the ‘Rural Oscars’ were borne of a need to support and promote rural communities. They celebrate people going the extra mile to ensure that rural Britain’s food and farming industry, small businesses, traditional skills and forward thinking enterprises can flourish.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

5 October 2012

We received some furniture vouchers from friends as wedding gifts so we decided to get rid of some old furniture. Rather than put it on e-bay or throw it in the skip we called our friend Sue Bagshaw who runs the Eastwood Volunteer Bureau and asked if this was the kind of thing they needed. Absolutely! She said. We phoned on the Friday and a few days later a van with some men arrived to take the furniture away in no time at all. I know that the Bureau will make sure that the furniture goes to a family that needs it. Unfortunately Sue told me they never enough stuff so if u r having a clean out instead of getting a fiver for an old chest of drawers why not call the Eastwood Volunteer Bureau on 01773  535255 and do a good deed. It will be the most satisfying clear out you have!

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Gloria writes for the Chad

3 October 2012

We often here about young people being louts or trouble makers - I say that's a massive generalisation. I recently paid a visit to Quarrydale School and met some brilliant young women. Since that visit one girl, Lauren Noble has got in touch with me to tell me about a 13,000 ft tandem skydive she is doing the day after her 18th birthday on October 13th. It’s in memory of her friend’s mum who sadly passed away from cancer this year and Lauren would like to raise as much money for Nottingham Universities Cancer Charity. Let's support her! If you’d like to donate to a great cause then visit www.justgiving.com/Lauren-Noble . Good luck and stay safe Lauren you are truly an inspiration!

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Local business leaders call on young people to get into manufacturing

1 October 2012

On Friday 28th September Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero was invited to meet with local business leaders and representatives to discuss plans for the economic development of the constituency.

The issues at the top of the agenda were the willingness of banks to lend to small businesses and the skill shortage amongst young recruits - especially those in the engineering sector locally.

One other issue which members were eager to highlight as a real cause for concern was the difficulty local businesses have had securing funding from the Regional Growth Fund. The £2.4 billion fund has been operating across England since 2011 and is meant to support businesses and projects with significant potential for economic growth that can create additional and sustainable jobs in the private sector.

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Gloria: Priority should be keeping people safe on the streets

25 September 2012

Labour's Gloria De Piero has slammed Liberal Dermocrat Crime Minister Jeremy Browne for slapping more red tape on CCTV.

Local authorities and police forces will be forced to prove they are using cameras "proportionately" under a new code of practice that is set to be introduced.

The move was quitely slipped out in a Statement in Parliament by Mr Browne last week on the new Protection of Freedoms Act which will alow people t challenge the use of CCTV in public areas.

Shadow Home Office Minister Gloria De Piero said that mr Browne's priority should be keeping people safe on the streets. Gloria added:"It says a lot that mr Browne's first priority in his new job is to regulate CCTV".

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Traffic and anti-social behaviour at the top of the agenda following Gloria's survey

24 September 2012

Labour MP Gloria De Piero hosted the fourth of this year’s regular coffee mornings for Ashfield constituents at Huthwaite Leisure Centre last Saturday (22nd September). The latest coffee morning differed from previous events as Gloria launched a brand new questionnaire to coincide with the event.

The local MP is always looking for new ways for voters to tell her what they want her to focus on and now constituents have returned their surveys Gloria has a picture of just how satisfied residents are with their community.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

20 September 2012

Over the last two months many of us have been captivated by the Olympic and Paralympic Games. The politicians have been talking about what the games mean will mean in the long term by way of a sporting legacy. Here in Ashfield we’ve got our very own sporting heroes in Sam and Ollie Hynd. After their amazing success these two lads are going to inspire a whole generation of future Ashfield Olympians. That is a sporting legacy they should be proud of!

Staying with sport I was delighted when Martyn Goodfellow from Underwood Villa FC got in touch and told me that the club had been successful in securing funding towards its changing room pavilion project from Sport England. I was more than happy to write a letter of support - it’s another example of what your MP can do for you.

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Gloria asks Government Minister to look into Sutton man's case

19 September 2012

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has written to the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Iain Duncan-Smith and asked him to personally look into the tribunal case of a Sutton man with a number of major health issues.

The local man is unable to claim Disability living Allowance - despite winning his case at a tribunal. He was undergone surgery for bowel cancer and has suffered a heart attack but has been unable to claim after being told by the Disability and Carers Service was to appeal the judges unaminous decision.

Gloria said: "This is a man who has worked all his life and never claimed a penny. I have now asked the Government Minister to personally look into it. I have read the appeal judgement and it says he is open and honest and his condition is unlikely to imrpove. This looks like an open and shut case so why is the Government wasting taxpayers' cash appealing again. he has been through enough and I won't give up until justice is done".

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Gloria to launch constituents surveys at next round of coffee mornings

18 September 2012

Local MP Gloria De Piero will host the fourth of this year’s regular coffee mornings for Ashfield constituents this Saturday (22nd September). The latest coffee morning will differ from previous coffee mornings as the MP has launched a brand new questionnaire to coincide with the event.

Gloria said: “I know not everyone can get to my coffee mornings but I still want to know what people think about the area and what they want me to focus on locally so all future coffee morning areas will get a questionnaire”.

Every Huthwaite resident will have received an invite and survey through the letter box to this Saturday’s (22nd September) event and it will take place at 10:30am-11:30am at Huthwaite Leisure Centre. For residents that can’t make the coffee morning but still want to return a completed questionnaire, a special ballot box has been installed at the entrance of the leisure centre. This is available to use up until 11:30am on Saturday (22nd September).

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Gloria backs campaign on free heating help for those who can least afford their bills

17 September 2012

Local MP Gloria De Piero is backing an awareness push from Consumer Focus, Citizens Advice, Age UK and National Children’s Bureau on help getting free heating for low income households from Warm Front, a government-led scheme. Gloria is urging those in Ashfield worried about paying their energy bills this winter to find out if they are eligible for free heating and insulation from Warm Front.

Gloria said: “I know that the costs of energy bills are a big worry of many people in Ashfield, and the households with the lowest income are hit the hardest. I am concerned that people are planning on such drastic measures to keeps costs low, especially after the snow we’ve experienced over last few years. I urge anyone who is worried about affording their energy bills this winter to contact their local Age UK or Citizens Advice to find out if they are eligible to claim”.

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Local girl Daisy to write to the Secretary of State for Education

13 September 2012

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero was put through her paces by an all-female panel of students during a Q&A session at Sutton’s Quarrydale School. The 16 and 17 year olds grilled their MP on a range of subjects that varied from politics to loaw and order to Hillsborough.

But the one question that the MP said really caught her attention was from Daisy Roberts, who asked if there was anything she could do to help improve the facilities at the school. Gloria told her she would take the matter up with the Secretary of State for Education and encouraged her to write a letter which she could then pass directly to Michael Gove.

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Gloria dresses up and joins in the fun at D.H. Lawrence Festival

11 September 2012

Last Friday Eastwood MP Gloria De Piero was at the D.H. Lawrence Birthplace Museum dressed in traditional Victorian clothing as part of a special taster tour and open day event to celebrate the first week of the D.H. Lawrence Festival.

It was the ‘Heritage Open Days’ event and there was free admission to both the D.H. Lawrence Heritage Centre and the Birthplace Museum with tours taking place throughout the day. The tours included a Victorian wash day session and the local MP helped wash and peg out clothes dressed in a traditional period apron.

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Gloria: Brilliant news that town bus service returns

10 September 2012

A bus service that was given the axe in Eastwood has been reinstated after passengers repeatedly complained to the company and asked their local MP for help.

After the 103 service was stopped passengers were forced to take longer journeys and walk further to other bust stops. Eastwood MP Goria De Piero then decided to write to the company who manages the service. Following her letter Gloria was told the bus service was going to be reinstated.

After receiving the news Gloria said: "It’s great news that the company have now listened to what the public and myself have said and reinstated this important local service. If anyone else has had a similar problem with any other local services then please do get in touch on 01623 720 399 or Gloria.depiero.mp@parliament.uk and I’ll do all I can to help”.

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MP concerned over ambulance response times

8 September 2012

Labour MP Gloria De Piero remains concerned the closure of the Eastwood Ambulance Station could mean slower response times, despite a deployment zone being based in the town.

Having received confirmation that the town will keep a 'tactical deployment point' the Eastwood MP has written to East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS) asking for confirmation that the length of time residents wait for an ambulance will not increase.

Gloria said: “I’ve written to the chief executive to ask him exactly how the closure of the station will improve their performance as he claims, and to get a guarantee that under no circumstances will this rise.

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Gloria's annual expenses

6 September 2012

MPs' annual expense claims have been published by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA).

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Gloria writes for the Chad

5 September 2012

The last time I wrote my column was just before my wedding and I’m very happy to say that everything went well on the day! It’s been a hectic summer and I’m sure a lot of folk were gripped by the Olympics and now there’s the Paralympics too. There seems to have been a real togetherness created by the Olympic spirit and it made me proud to be British.

Ashfield’s own Paralympic heroes, Ollie and Sam Hynd have been chosen to represent Britain in the games and they have both done brilliantly so far, bringing home silver and bronze respectively in the S8 400m freestyle swimming event and that might not be the end of their medal haul either! Congratulations lads you are both true Ashfield champions and I’m sure I speak for everyone when I say the whole of Ashfield has been right behind you.

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Gloria presents award to the UK's best furniture company

3 September 2012

Last Friday Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero paid a visit to Kirkby based furniture wholesaler; Julian Bowen Ltd to present a special award to the firm after it was recently voted the “Best UK Furniture Wholesaler”.

Speaking afterwards Gloria said: “I was delighted to be invited to present the award. In these difficult times it’s great when you hear a local success story and it was really good to find out how a local firm has managed to rise above the doom and gloom of the current economic climate. It was obvious what the award meant to all of the team there and I hope they enjoy their success – from what I saw they definitely deserve it and I’m sure it won’t be the last award either”.

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Eastwood could get brand new health clinic

1 September 2012

A new purpose built health clinic could replace the threatened building in Nottingham Road according to a letter sent to Eastwood MP Gloria De Piero this week.

Gloria has welcomed the news but warned the PCT should would be keeping a close eye on developments. she said: "It's of the upmost importance that if building work goes ahead and the clinic has to close then exactly the same services remain available in any temporary accommodation at the site".

"After seeking assurances, the initial indication from bosses is that they will and I'll be watching very carefully to make sure that they stick to their word. If any residents remain concerned then please don't hesitate to contact me on 01623 720 399 or gloria.depiero.mp@parliament.uk

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Gloria: Police have been left in limbo following ASBO announcement

26 August 2012

Official House of Commons Library figures have revealed that the total number of anti-social behaviour orders issued has hit a ten year low and they are set to drop by up to a fifth this year - making a 60 per cent drop in five years.

Two year's ago the Home Secretary Theresa May announced that the Government were scrapping ASBOs and that they would be phased out.

Labour's Shadow Home Affairs Minister Gloria De Piero said "This has left police officers in limbo. Many forces are now unsure about what tools they have to tackle loutish behaviour".

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Gloria: East Midlands Ambulance plans are a huge blow

28 July 2012

Labour MP Gloria De Piero has written to the chief executive of East Midlands Ambulance Service demanding answers and branding the decision to close ambulance stations across the region a ‘huge blow’ to local residents.

The proposals will see every station in Nottinghamshire close - including Eastwood - with the exception of two. Following the announcement the local MP has asked for reassurances that residents will not have to wait any longer for an ambulance, and asked how many miles paramedics will have to travel to get to an emergency in Eastwood.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

25 July 2012

Last week I met with one of our local health bosses and there was one thing that was at the top of my agenda…..the loss of the walk-in-centre. It's an issue that I’ve banged on about for over a year now and I still refuse to give up. I made this point crystal clear once again. I hope they now listen and act.

Sutton’s Quarrydale School achieved stunning improvements in its GCSE results. I went along to congratulate pupils and staff and learned about the fantastic campaign by year 7 students called Send My Friend to School. Thousands of students across the country have designed medals and posters to encourage world leaders to keep their promise and make sure that every child can go to school, no matter where they live. It’s such a worthy cause and if you happen to walk past my office in Kirkby you’ll see that I’m showing my support too with a huge window display designed by Quarrydale students.

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Gloria calls for three more u-turns from the Government

20 July 2012

David Cameron and George Osborne promised change and they promised to secure the recovery, but their failed policies have delivered a double-dip recession made in Downing Street.

Families and businesses are paying the price for their mistakes with prices rising faster than wages, companies going bust and long-term unemployment rising.  More people out of work claiming benefits rather than paying taxes means the Government is borrowing £150 billion more than they planned.

In recent weeks we have seen a number of high profile U-turns from the Tory-led Government. From the pasty and caravan taxes to the skip and charity taxes, we’re getting used to the Tory-led Government’s embarrassing about turns.

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Gloria meets the leaders of tomorrow at Kirkby College

19 July 2012

Last week Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero attended a workshop at kirkby College to see the programme the school has been running as part of its Campus CMI pledge and also awarded certificates to students. It is hoped that the professional qualification will give the youngsters a head start in the workplace.

The college has been running the Campus Chartered Management Institute (CIM) programme over the past three years for sixth formers and last Friday, those who had successfully completed it received a certificate.

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Gloria: Young people in Ashfield are crying out for jobs

17 July 2012

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero MP has accused ministers of seeming happy to forget about places like Ashfield as new figures released by the Office for National Statistics show that the number of 18 to 24 year olds in Ashfield who have been unemployed for more than twelve months has risen yet again – by 6.3 per cent in the last month and a massive 386% per cent in the last year.

Commenting on the latest unemployment statistics the local MP said: “It is pretty obvious that young people in Ashfield are crying out for action on jobs yet still ministers are refusing to bring in a plan for jobs and growth”.

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Gloria's House of Commons Written Questions

16 July 2012

Last week Gloria asked the following House of Commons Written Questions;

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many crimes were (a) reported to the police and (b) identified by the British Crime Survey in (i) Ashfield and (ii) Nottinghamshire (A) 1992 and (B) each year since 1992; and how many and what proportion of these crimes in each year resulted in a conviction.

To ask the secretary of State for the Home Department how many motorists have been caught speeding in a) Ashfield and b) Nottinghamshire in each of the last three years or for when figures are available.

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Gloria writes for the Eastwood Advertiser

13 July 2012

I know many Eastwood residents will be anxious because of the recent speculation regarding the health clinic. Quite simply I don’t want to see our town lose a single service and I’ve written to the PCT to find out exactly what they have planned and how this might affect people because at the minute I’m afraid their answers just aren’t clear enough. It’s vital that the powers that be are transparent and that everyone is given the chance to have their say on any new proposals. In the meantime I will be keeping a very close eye on the situation. I've written to them asking some very specific questions and I expect some straight answers. If you have relied or currently rely on services provided at the clinic I’d love you to e-mail me at gloria.depiero.mp@parliament.uk

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Gloria's expenses - January 2012 - February 2012

12 July 2012

MPs' expense claims processed in January 2012 - February 2012 have been published by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA).

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Gloria writes for the Chad

11 July 2012

In Ashfield over the last year the number of people waiting in A&E for more than four hours has almost doubled, we’ve also lost our NHS walk-in-centre and there are plans to close our community hospital. A couple of days ago I challenged the Health Secretary, Andrew Lansley as to why these things are happening but he could only tell me that he couldn’t remember all of the details and didn’t really answer my question directly. All of this makes me so angry - we've seen such deterioration in the quality of our health service and I think Ministers should at least do us the courtesy of telling us why they are letting it happen.

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Gloria: Plans under way to regenerate Sutton

9 July 2012

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero attended a breakfast club at Sutton Centre Community College last Friday (6th July). The event had been organised to discuss future plans for the town that link in with ideas that have already been created and discussed through the previous work on the Portas bid.

The local MP was joined by a number of local business leaders; including representatives from Asda, college governors and staff as well as representatives from organisations such as Ashfield District Council. As part of the college’s in-house enterprise initiative pupils from Sutton Centre Community College showcased their culinary skills by cooking and serving breakfast to almost thirty guests.

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Gloria urges local people to apply for Speaker's Parliamentary Placement Scheme

6 July 2012

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero MP has today backed the Speaker’s Parliamentary Placement Scheme and urged local people with an interest in politics to apply for the chance to work in Parliament.

The scheme aims to tackle the problem of unpaid internships in politics by creating a number of paid positions working with MPs in Parliament. Each successful applicant will get the opportunity to spend four days a week working in the Parliamentary office of an MP, with the fifth day being spent in a variety of roles across the House of Commons to develop an understanding of how Parliament works.

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Ashfield MP visits former Nottinghamshire Business of the Year

4 July 2012

Last Friday Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero paid a visit to leading Huthwaite based business, Synseal, after being invited to the site by chief executive David Leng following yet another successful year for the firm.

Gloria was given a full tour of the site and had the chance to chat with staff and senior management. The MP was keen to hear from bosses how Synseal has remained so competitive despite the current economic climate and what more can be done by the Government to support local engineering firms in the region.

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Gloria uncovers huge rise in A&E waiting times at local hospitals

28 June 2012

Figures obtained by Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero show that the number of patients waiting more than four hours in A&E at local hospitals, including the Queen’s Medical Centre and King's Mill has increased dramatically during last year.

The recently released statistics came to light after Gloria asked the House of Commons Library and the Secretary of State for Health how many patients waited longer than four hours in the accident and emergency wards of Nottingham University Hospitals Trust and Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust between April 2011 - March 2012 and April 2010 – March 2011.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

27 June 2012

I’m so proud of the National Health Service it’s one of our greatest achievements but I also worry a lot about its future. Some of you have recently told me that health rationing is alive and kicking in Ashfield and that you’ve have been told you can now only be treated for one cataract. That’s why I was amazed when William Hague told the House of Commons that – “it’s totally unacceptable if trusts are rationing on the basis of financial considerations”. I want to show Ministers why they are living in cloud cuckoo land so if you’ve been told that you can't be treated on the NHS because cash is tight please get in touch with me and I promise I’ll take your case straight to the top.

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Ashfield MP backs the Chad and King's Mill new MRI scanner campaign

26 June 2012

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero has pledged her support after the Chad teamed up with King's Mill Hospital as part of a major campaign to help the hospital purchase a new £750,000 state of the art MRI scanner.

Following the launch of the appeal Gloria has urged everyone in the local community to get behind the campaign and show their support.

The MP said: "I'm delighted to support a great local campaign like this and I'll help in any way that I can. it's important that patients get the best service and treatment available and if King's Mill get a new MRI scanner then it will be great news. It's a big target to reach but I know how well everyone in our community pulls together and it's a challnege I'm sure we can reach together".

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Gloria's House of Commons Written Questions

25 June 2012

This week Gloria asked the following House of Commons Written Questions;

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what the value of the pharmaceutical sector is to the economy in a) UK b) East Midlands c) Nottinghamshire d) Ashfield.

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and skills how many people are employed in the pharmaceutical sector in a) UK b) East Midlands c) Nottinghamshire d) Ashfield.

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Gloria - Worrying figures from HMIC on anti-social behaviour

22 June 2012

In response to Her to Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary report into the responses provided by police forces to reports of anti-social behaviour and victim satisfaction, Labour's Shadow Home Office Minister said:

“These are exceptionally worrying figures. Anti-social behaviour is a blight on too many lives and needs to be treated with the seriousness it deserves. We back a strong and swift response to anti-social behaviour and that victims should get a response within 24 hours".

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Gloria's House of Commons Written Questions

19 June 2012

Last week Gloria asked the following House of Commons Written Questions;

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the cost to the NHS of the illegal use of controlled substances in a) England b) East Midlands c) Nottinghamshire and d) Ashfield.

To ask the Attorney General how many residents of a) Ashfield b) Nottinghamshire and c) East Midlands were prosecuted by the Crown Prosecution Service for i) possession of ii) possession with intent to supply iii) supplying and iv) producing a) Class A drug b) Class B drug and c) Class C drug in each of the last five years or for when figures are available.

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Ashfield MP's visit to leading Sutton firm

18 June 2012

Last Friday Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero paid a visit to successful Sutton based manufacturing firm Midland Aerospace.

Gloria heard how the dynamic company which attracts clients from around the world is not only continuing to thrive but actually looking to expand in the near future despite the current tough economic climate. The managing Director, Eamon Lyons, attributed much of its success to a highly skilled and knowledgeable work force which uses some of the best manufacturing systems available.

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Gloria raises kirkby-in-Ashfield walk-in-centre closure during Prime Minister's Questions

16 June 2012

On Wednesday 13th June, Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero raised her concerns over the closure of the Kirkby-in-Ashfield NHS Walk-in-Centre with David Cameron during Prime Minister’s Questions.

During the debate Gloria asked the Prime Minister why the popular NHS walk-in-centre had closed in her constituency of Ashfield and also why similar walk-in-centres are closing all over the country. Unfortunately the Prime Minister avoided answering the Ashfield MP’s question directly.

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Gloria writes for the Advertiser

15 June 2012

Broxtowe Borough Council has now published its proposals for house building in Eastwood, Brinsley and the surrounding areas. I know how concerned many of you will be - that is why it is really important that if you feel strongly about them YOU must make your views known during the consultation process. It's up and running but only for a six week period and it will close on 23rd July. For my part I have already written to Broxtowe Borough Council to seek assurances that if the majority of residents oppose the Council’s proposals then they will listen to them and not just carry on regardless of residents concerns. Anyone who wants to raise their concerns can do so on the Council’s website www.broxtowe.gov.uk/corestrategy, at the Council offices in Eastwood or Eastwood Library.

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Ashfield Scouts join Gloria in Parliament

14 June 2012

On Tuesday 12th June Ashfield Scouts Bradley Smith, Thomas Lambe, Ben Scothern and Scout Leader Alan Scothern met with local MP Gloria De Piero at a special reception hosted by the All Party Parliamentary Scout Group in the House of Commons.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

13 June 2012

Judging by the pictures in the last Chad I think it’s safe to say that the Jubilee spirit was alive and well in Ashfield. I went to a brilliant event on Portland Square, Sutton, where school children sang one of my favourite songs, ‘Shine’ by Take That. I can confirm that the pupils from Sutton Centre and Priestsic Primary certainly gave Gary Barlow and the lads a run for their money. I loved all the stalls and I even had a go at decorating some biscuits. Three year old Kiya-Ann stood out from the crowds a mile with her lovely smile and painted face. It was great to meet you Kiya-Ann. Well done to all those involved in the organisation - it was our community at its best despite the weather!

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Gloria urges would be film-makers in Ashfield & Eastwood to enter national film competition

11 June 2012

Local MP Gloria De Piero has called for local amateur film makers to enter ‘Film the House’, a national competition that celebrates up-and-coming amateur film producers, directors and script writers across the UK.

Film lovers of all ages are urged to get their creative juices flowing and submit their amateur films to ‘Film the House’. Gloria will then nominate her top film from the area for the national competition which aims to also raise awareness of the importance of intellectual property rights, film and the creative industries.

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Ashfield MP spends afternoon with crew from East Midlands Ambulance Service

8 June 2012

On Friday 8th June Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero spent part of the afternoon with a crew from East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS) and witnessed firsthand the fast paced environment that paramedics have to work in when emergency calls first come in.

Gloria was invited to spend time with a local crew based at Kings Mill Hospital by the Chair of East Midlands Ambulance Service, Jon Towler. The visit provided the local MP with the perfect opportunity to see paramedics at work and find out more about the high level of skill that is involved working for the emergency services.

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Ashfield MP donates £100 cheque at Paralympic stars sutton fundraiser

6 June 2012

Ashfield MP, Gloria De Piero proudly donated £100 cheque to Paralympic swimming stars Ollie and Sam Hynd at a fundraising event held in Sutton last week.

On the night Gloria was also joined by a number of local businesses and well wishers who all turned out in force to show their support for the two local Paralympic heroes. Café Ilachi owner, Junior Choudhury, kindly agreed to host the event and he donated £250 cheque to the cause whilst a raffle which included a bottle of House of Commons whisky signed by Gloria helped bring the total amount raised on the night to a whopping £820.

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Local MP launches countdown to town's Jubilee singing event

1st June 2012

Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero launched the countdown to Sutton’s Jubilee singing event as part of the town’s special Jubilee celebrations this afternoon on Portland Square.

To mark the momentous occasion there were Jubilee market stalls dressed in red, white and blue and lots of bunting and the stalls were manned by local schools and charities as a fund raising initiative.

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Gloria writes for the Chad

31st May 2012

I’d like to start this week’s column by saying a big thank you to a very generous chap who answered a call for help in my Chad column a few weeks ago. The S.P.A.C.E Centre in Kirkby was in desperate need of new materials for their plumbing course so I was delighted when Mr Bradley from Stanton Hill got in touch to offer his assistance. He has kindly agreed to donate a porcelain sink as well as piping and a few other bits and pieces that will make a huge difference to the kids on the course. Thank you very much Mr Bradley – it’s good to know my Chad column works.

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Gloria launches school manufacturing competition

29 May 2012

Local MP Gloria De Piero is proud to be launching the We Made It! competition here in Ashfield and Eastwood working with local schools and industry to help young people understand how exciting and rewarding a career in manufacturing could be.

The competition invites young people aged 13-16 to submit designs and ideas for a gadget, gizmo, toy or tool they'd like to see made. Any invention, no matter how creative, is welcome and as long as it's realistic enough to be made there's a chance it could be!

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Gloria slams plans for making it easier to sack employees

25 May 2012

The Tories showed themselves to be the same old ‘nasty party’ this week after revealing plans to make it easier for employers to sack their staff.

The Government-commissioned Beecroft report proposes allowing firms to fire their staff at will – something that will cause alarm for employees already facing great uncertainty in the current jobs market and economic climate.

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Gloria decorates office with cards and pictures from local school children

24 May 2012

On Thursday afternoon (24th May) Ashfield MP Gloria De Piero MP decorated her constituency office window with all the thank you cards and pictures she recently received in the post from local school children at All Saints C. of. E. Primary School in Huthwaite.

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