July 2020: News from your local MP

July 14 2020

Helping our economy to recover

THESE are unprecedented times, but we are gradually moving out of lockdown- and as we get on with our lives, it’s vital to start rebuilding our local economy that has been affected by the pandemic.

We do not know yet the scale of what we are facing, but it is clear that businesses will need support. The government has provided a number of support schemes for business, with over 2,800 businesses in South Gloucestershire taking advantage of the grants scheme. My office has been ringing local firms making them aware of what support is available,  and I will be planning future job fairs to help local people find work, though I am investigating how these might be able to be held safely or virtually online. 

For those individuals shielding or who are vulnerable, Southern Brooks charity has done a fantastic job working with South Gloucestershire Council to deliver the necessary support needed. This will need to continue for some time, but I’m pleased that already several thousand local people have benefitted either directly or indirectly from this support.  The National Lottery has also awarded more than £85,000 to community projects in our area, and has recently provided funding for the Kingsmeadow@MadeForever community centre to help provide additional future support for those affected by the coronavirus - which investment I welcome and look forward to seeing how it helps those in need.

Thanks to everyone who responded to the consultation on Kingswood High Street- I hope that the local feedback will help strengthen the bid for the government’s Future High Streets fund, and I will certainly be raising this at Westminster. The potential for the regeneration of the high street and the Whitfield tabernacle is a fantastic opportunity which must be seized.

Finally, some more good news is that work on major improvements to the Wraxall Road roundabout on the ring road is about to begin. This £6million scheme will install extra lanes and traffic lights on what has been one of Kingswood’s most congested accident black spots - and is something I have been campaigning on for years. Once complete I hope that this will help regulate traffic flow better too.