2016 has been one of the most politically eventful years in recent memory nationally, with the UK/EU membership referendum in June where a majority of Crawley residents voted to leave, followed by the appointment of a new Prime Minister, Theresa May.
Locally, in early January I welcomed the Housing Minister to Forge Wood, to see the new 1,900 home development. Later in the year, the Communities Secretary launched a £3 billion Home Building Fund to get Britain building even more places for people to live.
On 4th March I hosted the Crawley Apprenticeship & Jobs Fair – that month I also spoke in the House of Commons about the importance of the Government building on the over 4,000 apprenticeships created in Crawley since 2010.
In Westminster, following Theresa May becoming our second female Prime Minister in history, I accepted an invitation from her to be the Education Secretary’s Parliamentary Private Secretary.
This year I helped set up, and was elected to chair, the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Blood Cancer. In this role, I help raise awareness of blood cancer, and highlight the needs of patients and their families with other MPs and the Government.
Among the issues I will continue to pursue in the New Year are the ongoing disruption to local rail services, and the need for a fair school funding formula for West Sussex children.
I would like to wish RH Uncovered readers a Merry Christmas and a happy 2017.
Henry Smith MP