SINCE being elected as Dudley South’s Member of Parliament nearly 4 years ago, I have made it one of my missions to regularly visit our excellent local schools; meeting with teachers, students and parents to ensure our primary and secondary schools feel supported and listened to in the national debate about our education system.

It is no secret that I am passionate about education, which, when done effectively, has the power to inspire children and gives them the confidence to be the best they can be. Education gives children perspective and provides them with the essential building blocks to develop their own views and opinions about how the world is and how it should be.

Year after year I am struck by the incredibly creative and impressive children we have in Dudley South, which is perfectly demonstrated by the number of fantastic entries I received in my recent creative writing competition to mark the centenary anniversary of the end of the First World War last November. I complied the best entries into a small booklet and am extremely grateful to all the children who took part.

Last month I invited the eleven lucky winners of the competition (one from each school that entered) presentation event in Parliament, including a tour of the famous Palace of Westminster. It was an immensely exciting day and even the Foreign Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, dropped into the event to meet the children and thank them for their help in preserving the memory of those who lost their lives during the Great War. The children were also able to hand-deliver a copy of the booklet to Number Ten Downing Street for the Prime Minister to read, to which Theresa May responded with a lovely letter asking me to pass on my thanks to the children.

True to my word, last Friday I visited four schools in Dudley South to personally thank the other children that entered the competition and to hand out some prizes for the runners-up. I have more school visits scheduled tomorrow (Friday) and after the Easter holidays.

Over the coming weeks the booklets are being distributed around doctors’ surgeries, community centres and other locations across Dudley South so that the general public can enjoy the children’s fantastic work.

We clearly have some extremely talented children in Dudley South, all of whom really touched my heart with their truly emotional creative writing pieces.

If you’d like to see a copy of the final booklet then please pop into my office in Wordsley and my team will be more than happy to show you one.

I am looking forward to welcoming a full coach of constituents to Westminster for my Spring trip to Parliament on Monday. My office are now taking bookings for my summer trip which will be held on Thursday 11th July so please get in touch if you would like to book a place.

As always, if any constituents would ever like to raise anything with me then please email: or call: 01384 913 123 and I will be more than happy to see what I can do to help.