Category Archives: Victoria in North Oxfordshire

Victoria to speak at Buckingham Literary Festival

This year’s Buckingham Literary Festival is taking place from 1st to 3rd July. Victoria Prentis will be speaking with one of the authors attending.

Victoria will be joining Rebecca Fraser, who has recently written a biography of Charlotte Bronté. In the two hundredth anniversary year of Charlotte’s birth, Victoria and Rebecca will be discussing how perceptions of the author have altered since Victorian times.

For more information, including on how to book tickets, please go to www.bucklitfest.org.

Victoria visits St John’s Priory School in Banbury

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On Friday 10th June, Victoria visited St John’s Priory School in Banbury. She met with staff, and spoke to years 3 and 6.

On visiting a year 6 class, Victoria was grilled on ‘all things parliament’. Issues discussed included the EU, clothing in Westminster, how loud Prime Minister’s Questions was, and the people Victoria had met and worked with in the local area.

Victoria then met with year 3, who were very interested in issues including homelessness and taxes.

After her visit, Victoria said, “It was really good to visit St John’s Priory School. Year 6 have been concentrating hard on parliamentary studies and British values this term, and it really showed in the quality of their questioning. They got a great deal from their trip to parliament earlier in the week.

I hope all schools will take advantage of the opportunity to come to parliament. The difference in the way the children approached political life was fantastic.”

VICTORIA PRENTIS GIVES INITIAL COMMENTS ON PLANS FOR THE HORTON GENERAL HOSPITAL

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Victoria Prentis MP writes about her concerns following Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust’s announcement that NHS services at the Horton General Hospital in Banbury may be restructured after a public consultation. 

As you may be aware, the health and social care authorities in Oxfordshire are in the process of developing a transformation programme for our area. As part of this project, a number of proposals will be considered regarding the structure of services at the Horton Hospital.

I was born at the Horton, as were my sisters. I was cared for there after I had complications following the birth of my youngest child. It has always been my local hospital. While no decisions have been made yet, I want to make it clear from the outset that I feel very strongly that we must keep high level maternity care at the Horton. The most important factor is the safety of mothers and babies. 

I am also sure that our paediatric care must continue to be local and first class. When my eldest daughter was one and developed a meningococcal rash, I knew I needed to get her to a hospital fast. I vividly remember stopping the car at the junction on the Banbury to Oxford road, and deciding whether to turn left to the John Radcliffe, or right to the Horton. I turned right, arrived within twenty minutes at the Horton, was able to park the car, and she was treated by the great Dr Bell very quickly and successfully.  

We have benefited enormously from having a world-class teaching hospital in Oxford. However, some of us live a very long way from it, and the traffic and parking situation near the John Radcliffe makes travel there a real problem. Of course, more specialist care for high risk pregnancies, and children with unusual conditions, may be better dealt with in the centres of excellence around the country.  However, I believe that we need good quality maternity and paediatric care close to home in our own town in Banbury.

The proposals put forward by the Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust will consist of three options. I am interested to learn more about them. I want to see which offers the best and safest support to those who use the Horton.

These proposals are still being developed; the Transformation Plan will not be finalised until later this month. It will then go to public consultation in the autumn. I would encourage all my constituents to engage with the consultation process. I will send you further details when I have them, and know there will be a website available soon too.

We have been fighting to keep high level maternity services at the Horton for most of my lifetime.  We may have to dust off our Hands Off Our Horton banners and start again.

Victoria Prentis MP (8 June 2016)

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Victoria asks for acknowledgement of dangers on A361

Although Victoria was unable to attend the parish meeting on Tuesday 24 May 2016 due to parliamentary commitments, she has continued to support South Newington Parish Council to try and improve road safety on the very tight bends through the village.

One major concern is the number of HGVs that pass through the village, and the dangerous decisions they have to make in order to pass one another on corners.

Victoria commented, “I was sorry I couldn’t make it along to the parish council meeting as I was in Parliament. I have been kept updated on the situation, and have been supporting the village for a number of months. I have been in touch with the Secretary of State about safety concerns on the A361, as well as the County Council. Most recently, I contacted a large number of hauliers who travel through the village to see if they would consider mapping alternative routes. I am hopeful that some will, to try and reduce the number of very dangerous manoeuvres that are taking place daily. I am pleased that Oxfordshire County Council has taken on board the comments from residents, and may try some form of mapping to encourage hauliers to consider a different route too.”

MP LEARNS ABOUT MAD HATTERS, MUSIC AND SPORT AT GLORY FARM SCHOOL

Victoria Prentis MP speaking with pupils at Glory Farm School 23.05.16 Cropped

Victoria Prentis MP visited Glory Farm Primary School on Monday 23rd May, and was given a tour by Head Teacher Mr Ian Elkington. Victoria visited every class, and was given more information on the work the school is doing in sports and music.

Victoria was able to watch a North Oxfordshire School Sport Partnership lesson, where the aim is to encourage physical education, and being active in sport in your school and community.

A group of children in year 3 presented a musical piece they were working on. The children learn the piece of music by clapping the rhythm first, and will then play the piece on instruments next week.

Victoria read from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland to a year 6 class, who were understanding maths problems using the Mad Hatter and his tea party as an example.

Finally, she spent time with year 4 talking about their recent trip to Oxford, and the things they remember about the town such as its heritage, transport links, and shopping facilities!

Victoria and Mr Elkington also discussed subjects including year 6 SATs, school roofs, and special needs support in the classroom.

After her visit, Victoria commented, “I always enjoy spending time at local schools and seeing how young people are learning. What was abundantly clear at Glory Farm was that everyone was keen to learn, and excited to be working together. It was really lovely to see.”

MINISTER FOR ENERGY AND CLIMATE CHANGE OPENS ENERGY CENTRE AT BICESTER ECO TOWN

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Victoria was joined by Energy Minister Andrea Leadsom MP to officially open the Elmsbrook energy centre on 23 May 2016.

Elmsbrook, situated in north west Bicester, is the first eco-town in the country, and is providing new homes to true zero-carbon standards.

As well as opening the energy centre, Victoria and the Minister were able to visit one of the show homes, learn more about the eco-friendly standards properties had been built to, and see one of the development’s electric cars.

Speaking after the event, Victoria said “It was just lovely to be able to bring the Minister to see this fantastic development for herself. I am very proud that Bicester is home to the first eco-town in the country. Now that residents are moving in, the community spirit is even more apparent.”

North West Bicester A2Dominion MP Visit and Energy Centre Opening at Elmsbrook, NW Bicester, the UK's first eco town... Andrea Leadsom, MP, Minister of State for Energy and Victoria Prentis MP... L-R Barry Wood of Cherwell District Council, Andrea Leadsom MP, Victoria Prentis MP and Sue Smith of Cherwell District Council PICTURE WILL JOHNSTON ( 07984 165837 / www.willjohnstonphotography.com )

Councillor Barry Wood (Leader of Cherwell District Council), Minister of State Andrea Leadsom MP, Victoria Prentis MP and Sue Smith (Chief Executive of Cherwell District Council) at Elmsbrook.

North West Bicester A2Dominion MP Visit and Energy Centre Opening at Elmsbrook, NW Bicester, the UK's first eco town... Andrea Leadsom, MP, Minister of State for Energy and Victoria Prentis MP PICTURE WILL JOHNSTON ( 07984 165837 / www.willjohnstonphotography.com )

Victoria Prentis MP and Energy Minister Andrea Leadsom MP with one of electric vehicles available to Elmsbrook’s residents.

VICTORIA PRENTIS NAMED PUB PARLIAMENTARIAN OF THE YEAR AT ANNUAL BEER AWARDS

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On Tuesday 17 May, North Oxfordshire MP Victoria Prentis attended the Annual Beer Awards in London. During the dinner and reception, Victoria was named Pub Parliamentarian of the Year in recognition of her support for pubs in her constituency. In particular, Victoria was congratulated for her “Pub Tours” which take place regularly, and give her an opportunity to meet and chat with constituents in an informal setting, at the same time as supporting local pubs.

After accepting the award, Victoria said: “I have always been a keen supporter of the beer and pub industry, not least because my husband is a CAMRA member and we make cider at home. I made representations to the Treasury about beer duty before the recent Budget statement, and my “Contact Victoria Prentis” beer mats are certainly a talking point.

As a new MP I didn’t think I would be in the running for the award, so I was amazed to hear my name read out. It was definitely my Pub Tours which impressed the judges.  Since I was selected as the Conservative candidate, I have visited over twenty pubs across my constituency as part of my tour. I find it provides a great opportunity to meet constituents, discuss issues of the day and get to know local publicans.

Pubs play a crucial social and economic role at the heart of our communities, so I will continue to do my bit for them. A date and destination for the next stop on my tour is yet to be confirmed but details are always posted on my website under the “Contact Victoria” tab.

The award – which rather appropriately is a silver tankard – will sit proudly on my desk in my Westminster office.”

MP VISITS BURE PARK SCHOOL TO CONGRATULATE CHRISTMAS CARD DESIGN WINNER

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Victoria Prentis visited Bure Park Primary School on Friday morning to thank personally the winner of her Christmas card design competition.

Victoria asked all primary schools in her constituency to submit designs for Christmas cards, working to the theme of angels. Victoria then chose Jasmine McDermott, year 2 at Bure Park Primary School, as the winning design.

Victoria arrived at the school on Lucerne Avenue and met with Mr Rob Pearson, who has recently announced his retirement. She also had the opportunity to speak with new Head Teacher, Yvonne Hewson. There was an opportunity to discuss fairer funding for schools.

Victoria visited Jasmine McDermott in her class and thanked her for her artwork. Jasmine and her family have been invited to the Houses of Parliament to meet Victoria there and have a tour.

Speaking after her visit, Victoria said, “It was lovely to speak with Jasmine and thank her for designing such a beautiful card. I look forward to meeting her and her family in Westminster soon.

There were many impressive designs submitted from schools across the constituency, and I hope to see more this year.”

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Victoria Prentis MP with Jasmine McDermott, the winner of Victoria’s 2015 Christmas card design competition.

VICTORIA PRENTIS MP TO BECOME CO-PATRON OF BANBURY CANAL PARTNERSHIP

Victoria Prentis MP is due to become a co-patron of the Banbury Canal Partnership after its AGM on 30th April.

The Banbury Canal Partnership combines volunteers and other organisations such as the Canal and Rivers Trust. The group works to clean up areas in and around the canal, and promote the route as a fantastic way to travel through north Oxfordshire.

She will join current patrons Sir Tony Baldry, former local MP, and actor Timothy West CBE.

Victoria said: “I am very excited to be taking on the co-patron role alongside Sir Tony and the rest of the team. Banbury is a lovely town, and the canal an important part of its history. I know lots of work goes into keeping the canal and towpaths in good condition, and I am keen to get involved.”

Sir Tony commented: “The Oxford Canal is a great asset for Banbury and the surrounding area. The Banbury Canal partnership is doing good work in helping maintain the canal and towpath and its good news that Victoria is getting involved as co-patron.”

MP HELPS CHARITY RAISE ITS PROFILE DURING BOWEL CANCER AWARENESS MONTH

As April marks Bowel Cancer Awareness Month Victoria Prentis, MP for North Oxfordshire, is supporting a call by leading research charity Bowel Cancer UK, urging more people to take part in bowel cancer screening and help save lives.

Bowel cancer is the second biggest cancer killer in the UK, affecting both men and women. Every year over 41,000 people (one every 15 minutes) are diagnosed with bowel cancer, and 16,200 people die of the disease.

Bowel cancer screening can save lives but at the moment in some areas of the UK only a third of those who receive a test complete it. Thousands of people are missing out on the chance to detect bowel cancer early when it is easier to treat.

Victoria said, “Improving uptake rates for bowel cancer screening, both locally and nationally, is really important. I would urge my constituents who are sent a screening test to use it, as it is undoubtedly the best way to get diagnosed early. It was eye-opening to meet my constituent Joy Dansette at the end of last year, and to hear her story. While she had no symptoms, routine screening showed abnormalities which eventually led to a life-threatening cancer diagnosis. Owing to her decision to take the bowel screening test, and the efforts of the Horton General Hospital in Banbury and the John Radcliffe in Oxford, thankfully Joy was able to make a full recovery. Her experiences really demonstrated to me the importance of screening and early diagnosis.”

Deborah Alsina, Chief Executive of Bowel Cancer UK, said, “I’d like to thank Victoria for supporting our campaign during Bowel Cancer Awareness Month to raise participation levels for bowel cancer screening. One in 14 men and one in 19 women will be diagnosed with bowel cancer during their lifetime but it is treatable and curable, especially if diagnosed early.”

The NHS Bowel Cancer Screening Programme (and its equivalent in each of the home nations) can detect bowel cancer at an early stage in people with no symptoms when it is easier to treat. Since its launch 10 years ago, it has been proven to save lives. If you’re registered with a GP and aged 60-74, you will receive a test in the post every two years. You carry out the simple test at home in private and it comes with step by step instructions. The test looks for hidden blood in your poo, which could be an early sign of bowel cancer.

Visit Bowel Cancer UK’s website to find out how you can get involved in their campaign for Bowel Cancer Awareness Month, bowelcanceruk.org.uk.

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