Newsletter #21 (August)

As we approach the end of the Summer, the big news from my constituency office is that we’ve moved! I’ve been looking for some time for an office that was more visible and accessible for my constituents so I’m pleased we now have a high street location in Sawston. We have been made to feel very welcome and it was great to meet the local businesses who came to our “open house” afternoon. The new address is: 82A High Street, Sawston CB22 3HJ and you can call on 01223 830 037.

Health was on my agenda this month as I visited Addenbrooke’s to shadow the bed managers in the operations centre. They have the challenging job of managing patient flow and beds across the whole hospital, 24 hours a day. Given the huge scale of the task and the challenges of our growing, ageing population and the great pull of Addenbrooke’s reputation, they do an amazing job. I’d like to thank the whole team for allowing me to spend the morning with them and gain an insight into their pressures. Spending a morning in the hospital reminded me of the need for blood donations, so I popped round the corner to the permanent donation centre at Addenbrooke’s. They are open 6 days a week and with free parking (and biscuits!) so there really is no excuse. It’s honestly not that painful! Simply go to www.blood.co.uk or call 0300 123 23 23 to book an appointment. It really does save lives.

I continue to work hard to improve our transport infrastructure across South Cambridgeshire so am delighted our aspiration to build a railway station at Addenbrooke’s has been given the thumbs up by Chris Grayling, Secretary of State for Transport. I shared our proposals with him just before the Summer recess and he swiftly grasped the need to ensure the Biomedical Campus reaches its full potential as a world renowned centre of excellence. I am confident this station will not only secure the local economy, but also ease congestion by removing many of the cars who currently commute to the campus from our roads. I also continue to work closely with local communities to improve our rural public transport. Whippet’s recent announcement to reduce some of their services understandably caused a lot of concern amongst our parishes, so I was relieved that the County Council have retained most of South Cambridgeshire’s services albeit with some changes. Bus provision remains a complex issue in rural areas and I encourage you to lobby your local County Councillor to ensure they are aware of your concerns and transport needs. You can find out who your County Councillor is on the Cambridgeshire County Council website. https://cmis.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/ccc_live/Councillors.aspx

Some of you contacted me about the County Council’s consultation on Children’s Centres, which is due to close on 22nd September. I met with the council’s service director for children and families to gain a deeper understanding of the proposals and challenged her on the level of analysis that lay behind the proposals. I am currently digesting the detailed data and assessments that I have since been sent and will be fully scrutinising this information to ensure I am happy with the potential changes. If you would be affected by the proposals and want to have your say, you still have time to submit to the consultation at www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/residents/children-and-families/children-s-centres/children-s-centres-consultation/

Alternatively there are still drop-in events at the Children’s Centre in Papworth Everard on 13th September from 6.30pm to 8pm or at the Children’s Centre in Bassingbourn on 14th September from 5pm to 7pm.

My next constituency surgery is on Saturday 21st October from 10am to 12pm at the Melbourn Community Hub, 30 High Street, Melbourn SG8 6DZ. This will be my usual drop-in type of event with no appointment necessary. However I am also trialing an appointment-only surgery at the new office in Sawston on Friday 29th September for constituents with more sensitive issues who need a private environment. Please call my office to book.

Details of all the upcoming surgeries can be found on my website at www.heidisouthcambs.co.uk/residents-drop-surgeries. You’ll also find further information about my work and news stories there.

To contact me, please email heidi.allen.mp@parliament.uk. You can also phone my Westminster Office on 020 7219 5091 about national issues or my constituency office on 01223 830 037 to raise local concerns.

See you next month!