Over the last couple of months, many people in Tamworth across the country have taken a stronger interest in announcements from the Government, as well as the news on the television and have looked to local media like The Herald for their news and updates. I think this is very positive, and it is important that everyone hears the messages and announcements as they develop how to get on with our lives safely.
The social distancing measures are clear, in line with all the medical and scientific advice, and mean that we can begin to re-open the economy and protect peoples’ livelihoods. I was down at Tamworth Market to see it re-open in the middle of the month, and chatting to stall traders they are ready to get back and ready to sell their goods safely. It was also a great opportunity for me to pop into the Tamworth Toolbox and get some items!
As many of you know, as well as being Tamworth’s MP, I am also the Government Housing Minister. I have always been a strong supporter of our Armed Forces and so I was particularly delighted to announce on the weekend that serving members and veterans that suffer from mental ill health will be given priority to social housing. This is only one of the schemes we are running as a Government, but I think an important one that will benefit those in Tamworth, our county and our country. Another equally important announcement which I hope will help businesses in Tamworth is the announcement I made in the House of Commons this week that from later in July pubs, cafes and other hospitality businesses will be able to move their business outside.
It means more "al fresco" dining for customers which is safer and it will make it much easier for our local businesses to operate supporting jobs and the local economy. The idea is to make more use of the light and warm summer months though the council will have discretion over licences to ensure there is no obstruction for pedestrians and the disabled and they will also be able to crack down on noise or anti-social behaviour. The scheme will run until 2021 and will be a real help to our town centre.
Finally, towards the end of last month it was brilliant to see the great community feeling in Tamworth is continuing to roll on. In fact, the Tamworth Self Isolation Support Group, run by Lee Bates and Cllr Paul Brindley, have celebrated 100 days of community support – a fantastic achievement based on compassion, care and a love for Tamworth and our villages. Well done all!
As ever, if I can help you or your family, please do not hesitate to get in contact with me.