Category Archives: Victoria in North Oxfordshire


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On Tuesday 5 July Victoria Prentis hosted the Parliamentary launch of Singing for Syrians 2016. At the event, MPs found out more about what they can do locally to encourage constituents to get involved in any way they can. Whether it’s organising their own event or even just passing a bucket around at a pre-planned carol concert, every little helps.

The flagship Parliamentary concert will take place in St Margaret’s Church, Westminster on Tuesday 13 December 2016. All money raised will go to fund medical teams on the ground in Aleppo and to prosthetic limb clinics in the region. It is currently estimated that over 50,000 Syrians are amputees in urgent need of treatment.

This is Singing for Syrians’ second year; last year, £90,000 was raised with the support of match-funding from the Department for International Development. Over 300 people came to St Margaret’s to sing carols and show their support. Sadly, the need is even greater this year so it is hoped that this will become a nationwide initiative.

Victoria was delighted with the support shown by MPs at last year’s fundraising and commented: “It was so exciting to see the level of enthusiasm shown by my colleagues from all sides of the political spectrum at the launch event in Parliament. It is already looking like Singing for Syrians is going to be bigger and better than before. It is a fantastic initiative and one that I am very proud to be launching again in 2016.

With everything going on in UK politics at the moment, it is easy to forget the terrible events happening elsewhere in the world. The civil war in Syria is worse than it has ever been. Singing for Syrians is a positive way of helping Syria’s most vulnerable people, whose lives have been devastated by the war. Through fundraising, we can make a real difference to the victims of this terrible crisis. I would encourage everyone in North Oxfordshire to get involved as much or as little as they can. Singing together is a joyful way to express our solidarity and to take a hopeful stance against the horrors of terrorism.”


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Collective support to secure the future of local hospital

On Saturday 9 July, local elected representatives met at Banbury Town Hall to discuss the future of the Horton General Hospital.

Labour Party Councillors Sean Woodcock and Steve Kilsby joined Conservative leader of Cherwell District Council, Barry Wood and local Member of Parliament, Victoria Prentis, at the meeting during which they voiced their thoughts and concerns about plans for the structure of services at the hospital, and agreed on an action plan going forward.

Speaking afterwards, Victoria said: “It was really helpful to sit down in the same room with Barry, Sean and Steve and talk about what needs to be done to secure the future of the Horton General Hospital. The Horton is loved and valued by everyone in Banbury – both Sean and I were born there. I am keen to ensure that there is cross-party consensus so that we can work together to keep our Horton general. This is an issue which unites our parties. It was clear that we are all on the same page; collectively, we will do what we can to get the best result for Banbury.

Sean Woodcock added: “The success of previous campaigns to preserve services at the Horton has been built upon cross-party support. This latest fight will be really tough. Possibly the toughest that has yet been fought for the hospital. For once Victoria and I are united on an issue. We both want to protect the hospital that we were born in so that it can continue to serve future generations.


Primary Schools in North Oxfordshire are being offered the chance to plant free trees with help from the Woodland Trust.  Children can look forward to planting small groups of trees or hedges, which can provide a wild harvest, or a burst of year round colour.

Over the next four years, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) is supporting The Woodland Trust to offer 400,000 British native trees to up to 7000 state funding primary schools in England. As well as free tree packs, protection to help the trees grow and online curriculum resources to support teachers’ lesson plans.

Victoria Prentis MP said: “This is a great opportunity to help schools improve their local environment, enabling children to learn about nature. Trees bring enormous benefits to our environmental surroundings and this scheme will provide children with a unique learning experience”.

Primary schools can apply for a free tree pack by visiting the Woodland Trust Website,  or search ‘School tree packs’ on-line;

The closing date for applications is September 9th 2016 for tree delivery in November. Any enquiries email


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On Monday 4 July, the All Party Parliamentary Group for Historic Vehicles organised a classic car run from Bicester Heritage to the Palace of Westminster. Victoria Prentis, MP for North Oxfordshire, took part with her husband Sebastian, who drove their British racing green Mini Cooper. They were joined by fellow Parliamentarians and members of the Group, including chairman Greg Knight, Nigel Adams and Lord Steel.

Victoria commented: “It was brilliant to take part in this uniquely British event. Seeing all those magnificent classic cars in the Palace of Westminster was quite a sight. It was great that the Historic Vehicles group chose Bicester Heritage as the starting point and I was very proud to be there as the local MP. We love driving our Mini, although it was a rather bumpy journey down to Westminster on what was a very warm day!”

NHS TO HOLD Big Conversation Roadshows IN OXFORDSHIRE

The NHS in Oxfordshire is calling on people, parents, carers and people who live and work in Oxfordshire to have their say on how health care is delivered.

Events are being held to encourage people to ‘drop-in’ and have informal conversations with NHS clinicians and staff to share their ideas on how NHS services in Oxfordshire can deliver high quality care now and in the future.

Victoria Prentis MP is encouraging her constituents to share their views on how local GP, community and hospital services should develop so that services are of high quality, closer to home, more convenient with better access and can overcome a £200m funding gap by 2020/21.

The events are informal ‘drop-ins’ with NHS clinicians and staff on hand to take questions and feedback.

They will focus on:

  • the financial health challenges within Oxfordshire
  • how we can improve the overall health of people in Oxfordshire
  • how we can prevent people from getting ill
  • how we can improve quality
  • make best use of tax-payers money
  • how you can get more actively involved including hearing about our plans for public consultation later in the year around models of care across Oxfordshire.

The Big Conversation Roadshows are being held on:

  • Tuesday 12 July, 6pm – 9pm, at Banbury Town Hall
  • Monday 18 July, 6pm – 9pm, at The Beacon in Wantage
  • Thursday 21 July, 6pm – 9pm, at Oxford Town Hall
  • Tuesday 26 July, 2pm – 5pm, at St Mary’s Church, Wallingford
  • Thursday 28 July, 2pm – 5pm, at the Littlebury Hotel, Bicester
  • Thursday 4th August, 11am – 2pm, Methodist Church, Witney


On Friday 1 July 2016 Victoria Prentis MP attended two local events to commemorate the centenary of the first day of the Battle of the Somme. In the century since the beginning of the largest battle of the First World War, the Somme has become notorious for the incomprehensible scale of the losses suffered by the British Army.

Victoria began the day by attending a silent vigil at St Mary’s Church in Banbury, during which the congregation reflected on the loses of both sides. In the evening Victoria joined representatives of Chipping Norton Royal British Legion, Colonel John Bridgeman (Deputy Lieutenant of Oxfordshire) and local villagers at a commemoration at the church of St Nicholas in Tadmarton. The names of soldiers from Tadmarton who had fought in the battle were read out, followed by reflective poems and prayers for those who made the ultimate sacrifice in the service of our county.

Speaking after the event in Tadmarton, Victoria said, “It is sobering to think that over one million soldiers sacrificed their lives during the five months of the offensive. We must make sure that we, and the generations to come, remember the brave men who gave their lives for this country. The wounds of the Somme offensive still run deep, but we should be thankful for the bravery of our soldiers throughout history and today.”


The Prime Minister’s decision to stand down is extremely sad, particularly for us in Oxfordshire. He has been a fantastic constituency neighbour, friend to Banbury and a tireless supporter of everything in Oxfordshire including the Horton General Hospital. He will go down in history as a great reforming Prime Minister. His statement this morning was dignified, and reminded us of the vision he had for Britain. We must all now work together to make it a reality.

In his own words:

The country has just taken part in a giant democratic exercise, perhaps the biggest in our history. Over 33 million people from England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and Gibraltar, have all had their say. We should be proud of the fact that in these islands, we trust the people with these big decisions. We not only have a parliamentary democracy but on questions about the arrangements for how we are governed, there are times when it is right to ask the people themselves, and that is what we have done. The British people have voted to leave the European Union and there will must be respected.….The will of the British people is an instruction that must be delivered….We must now prepare for a negotiation with the European Union.

“…I am very proud and honoured to have been Prime Minister of this country for six years. I believe we have made great steps, with more people in work than ever before in our history, with reforms to welfare and education, increasing people’s life chances, building a bigger and stronger society, keeping our promises to the poorest people in the world and enabling those who love each other to get married whatever their sexuality. But above all restoring Britain’s economic strength. And I’m grateful to everyone who has helped to make that happen. I’ve also always believed that we have to confront big decisions, not duck them. That is why we delivered the first Coalition Government in 70 years, to bring our economy back from the brink. It’s why we delivered a fair, legal and decisive referendum in Scotland and it’s why I made the pledge to renegotiate Britain’s position in the European Union and hold a referendum on our membership and have carried those things out.

“…The British people have made a choice. That not only needs to be respected, but those on the losing side of the argument, myself included, should help to make it work. Britain is a special country. We have so many great advantages. A parliamentary democracy where we resolve issues about our future through peaceful debate. A great trading nation with our science and arts, our engineering and creativity, respected the world over. And while we are not perfect I do believe we can be a model of a multiracial, multi-faith democracy where people can come and make a contribution and rise to the very highest that their talent allows.

“Although leaving Europe was not the path I recommended, I’m the first to praise our incredible strengths. I said before that Britain can survive outside the European Union and indeed that we could find a way. Now the decision has been made to leave, we need to find the best way. And I will do everything I can to help. I love this country, and I feel honoured to have served it. And I will do everything I can in future to help this great country succeed.

Victoria Prentis MP (Friday 24 June 2016)


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The British electorate has had a once-in-a-generation opportunity to have their say on our future relationship with the European Union. Britain has spoken. I hope that the result can be respected; we must crack on and make a success of the decision to leave, particularly given the understandable economic turmoil we now face.

I am proud that the Conservative Party delivered on its commitment to give the people of Britain a say. It is important that we work together to heal the divides that emerged during the campaign. We still have plenty to do to deliver our manifesto commitments, and must not overlook other issues locally, particularly the future of the Horton General Hospital.

Victoria Prentis MP (Friday 24 June 2016)


Victoria Prentis, MP for North Oxfordshire, has met with the Chief Executive of Oxford University Hospitals Foundation Trust (OUHFT) to discuss emerging plans for the Horton General Hospital.

On Thursday 16th June, Victoria met with Dr Bruno Holthof, and members of the communications and clinical services teams. They discussed proposals to change some services at the hospital, including Paediatrics, Maternity, and Accident and Emergency (A&E).

Victoria conveyed the concerns of her constituents, including the very strong worries about a midwife only unit. She also made clear that paediatrics and maternity services were very closely linked and could not be separated. She explained that the potential loss of A&E at the Horton would mean very significant changes to how the hospital would be used, that are not practical given the size of Banbury and its growing population.

The timetable for the upcoming consultation is:

Mid July 2016 Proposed options

·         Proposed options for consultation to be finalised (and will include projected population growth figures).

·         These will be shared with targeted public audiences.

·         The aim is to reduce a long list of options to a short list of credible options for consultation.

Mid July 2016  – October 2016


Pre-consultation process

·         Everyone will be invited to get involved in this stage.

·         Opportunity to refine the options put forward.

·         It could lead to changes in the options put forward.

October 2016 – December 2016 Formal public consultation

·         To be run by the Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group.

·         Will include public, patient, staff and stakeholder meetings.

February / March 2017



·         A decision will be made on what option to take forward.

·         This will then be submitted to the Health and Overview Scrutiny Committee, to decide if the final option put forward is acceptable.

·         There will then be a decision on whether the Department of Health will ‘call in’ that decision.

Victoria said, “I am very concerned about these plans. I am also very worried that my constituents are just not aware of the detail of what is happening, which is creating a lot of anxiety locally. I have asked OUHFT to provide me with a timetable of the plans, which I have put on my website.

I will continue to fight for the Horton. It is a fantastic local hospital that is an asset to our community, and we cannot lose significant services from it.”

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