Stourbridge News Column, 11 January 2018

Stourbridge News Column – Thursday 11th January 2018


I have enjoyed a break over Christmas from my work in Parliament. I spent my Christmas mainly with my close family and I managed to see my great-nieces and my aunt. While very rewarding and always varied, my work does often keep me away from them so I really do value the time over periods such as Christmas.


I was delighted on Tuesday to accept a new position in Theresa May’s Government, moving to the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport as Minister of State. I very much enjoyed my previous role as a business minister, and I had a superb team around me. Nevertheless, I am very excited to move on to this new brief, which will cover many aspects of our digital policy, as well as creative industries and broadcasting.


I very much enjoyed spending time in Stourbridge leading up to Christmas. It was a pleasure to choose the winners and runners-up of my 2017 Christmas card competition from artistic pupils at Dudley Wood Primary School. Thank you to everyone who took part. It was also brilliant to visit postal workers in the Stourbridge sorting office. As most other workers wind up for Christmas, or maybe even already enjoying time with their families, these workers are experience their busiest time of the year.


At Christmas, we always think of those people who are less fortunate than ourselves, particularly those who find themselves without a home and often without the support of their families. I met Dudley Council’s Homelessness Prevention Team to talk to them about the extremely valuable work they do to prevent people from having to sleep on the streets not only over the Christmas period, but throughout the year.


I will also be back in Stourbridge tomorrow, resuming my work for constituents, holding surgeries and meeting local people who do brilliant work in our community.


No New Year column is complete without congratulating some of those people from Stourbridge who have been recognised in the New Year’s Honours List. Many congratulations go to Derek Elton, who receives an MBE for his lifetime of outstanding service to scouting, older people and the community. Second, to David Harcourt – a man who has done so much for our town through his work for the Chamber of Trade, Stourbridge in Bloom and more – he receives an MBE. Finally to Robert Herman-Smith, an OBE for services to the global aerospace sector.


As ever, if you want to get in touch with me, please do email at, or give my Stourbridge team a call on 01384 370574. You can also follow my work on Facebook at, or visit my website for more information about me and my work.


I would like to end by wishing you a very happy and prosperous New Year.