The week began with the very sad news of Councillor Pauline Carlile's passing after a brave fight against illness. Pauline was someone who was steeped in Labour values of community and family. She served her community well and will be very much missed by everyone.
After attending the festival of fun and volunteering that was Scunthorpe Rotary's third Disability Games at the Pods it was fitting that I popped along to a Scunthorpe Pentagon Rotary Meeting to share views on how things are going locally and nationally. Rotary are one of many groups that contribute a huge amount.
Another is our Town and Parish councils, so I was pleased to take advantage of the Westminster recess and attend a Bottesford Town Council meeting. The big concerns were about the changes to bus routes, the cutting down of trees along Bottesford Beck and the planning application for a waste transfer station near housing close to Bottesford Town Football Club. When I had been chatting to residents on Goodwood they also highlighted the planning application so I was pleased to learn later in the week that Veolia was withdrawing its plans for now. Let's hope they don't come back. It is not an appropriate place to have such a development so close to people's homes.
The other big news of the week locally was the Care Quality Commission's report on Northern Lincolnshire and Goole Trust putting our local hospitals back into special measures. This is very bad news for all of us that rely on Scunthorpe General Hospital. I know from my very many visits that it is full of amazing staff working extremely hard. However it is clear that something is systemically wrong. The new interim leadership has a responsibility to turn things round quickly for all our sakes.
Community pharmacies are doing more and more innovative things as I found out when I visited Whitworths at Brumby corner and learnt more about the consultations they now do and their capacity to prescribe directly for minor ailments. The Government should be investing in this part of the health service closest to communities not cutting their funding as they are doing. The Kirton Surgery is one of several locally that is also a Dispensing Doctors so it was good to drop in to be briefed on their work too.
At Rathside Rest Home in Scawby I carried out the very positive duty of opening their brilliant nostalgia room. It was great to catch up with residents and staff. It was fantastic to celebrate further investment in our Golden Wonder site as the plant increases its production by 50% and takes on a further 60 staff. The sort of good news we can all celebrate. I called in at Coral on Ashby Broadway where there was a real buzz ahead of the Grand National to place my charity bet. As usual my horses were unplaced!
The recess gave me the opportunity to pop into a couple of local nurseries - I Learn Education next to St Peter and St Paul's and Peek a Boo on Messingham Road - to see the brilliant work they do and catch up with how they are responding to the challenging changes the Government is bringing in.
It was good to meet the local Enterprise Coordinator and learn more about how the Careers and Enterprise Company intends to make a difference to young people's lives. I met up with a group of Tesco's apprentices to hear about how doing the apprenticeship had grown their confidence and their expertise.
Finally it wouldn't be Easter without Easter Egg and Easter Bonnet competitions so it was great fun to be able to not only look round Crosby Primary School but also judge the Easter Egg competition. Such amazing creativity from all entrants they all deserved a prize!