After what has been a very difficult year for everyone in our community before the Christmas break I want to use this December newsletter to say one thing in particular, and that is, Thank you.
Thank you to our doctors, our nurses and all our NHS workers; our shopkeepers, factory workers, teachers, volunteers, postmen and women and every single person who has played such an integral role over the last 12 months in keeping our community going. To everyone across the constituency who has followed the guidance throughout this crisis, enabling us to protect the capacity of our Royal Stoke Hospital. Thank you.
I’m very aware of the impact our current Tier-3 restrictions are unfortunately likely to have on our hospitality and cultural sector, and over the next month I’ll continue to lobby the government for increased funding and support for those businesses hardest hit. I will also make the case for us to move back to tier 2 when it is safe to do so.
There is no denying that for many of us, this Christmas will be a little different to usual, and we still need to make sure we are careful and following the correct guidance, which you can find here. But with the rollout of the vaccine already underway, 2021 brings hope for an end to the restrictions and a new beginning for Stoke-on-Trent with exciting plans underway to transform our public transport, invest in skills training and employment opportunities for our young people through the Kickstart scheme, build back better on brownfield sites in our city centre and lead the way on digital infrastructure and green projects, whilst supporting our local businesses as they recover.
We’ve already made great headway this year, delivering record levels of Government investment to our city, and this newsletter sets out some of our most recent wins, including:
£29 million from our Transforming Cities Fund Bid.
£15 million investment for Mental Health Services and Facilities.
£3.2 million for upgrades to UNHM hospital.
£591,700.00 from the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund.
This year certainly did not go as we had expected at the election in December last year, but I made a commitment to Stoke-on-Trent Central when you voted for me and the pandemic has not changed that. I have been fighting our cause at Westminster, and drawing attention to the need for investment in our community to address some of the challenges we face, and as ever, I am incredibly grateful for your continued support.
On that note, may I wish you and your loved ones a safe and happy Christmas and a hope for better New Year.