Brexit loomed large last week as we finally got the long awaited vote to support the triggering of Article 50. This was passed by a very large majority demonstrating what I have always known - where there has been a referendum parliament will respect the people's will.
It was, however, a difficult week for Labour whips, like myself, being sympathetic to those colleagues who represent constituencies that voted overwhelmingly Remain whilst ensuring that our overall position reflected that of the majority who voted.
Knocking on doors in the both the Copeland and Stoke by-elections it was good to see that Labour voters are sticking with Labour - recognising we are best placed to argue for a future relationship with the European Union that protects jobs and is in the best interests of the UK. And that's where the focus now moves - and rightly so. It is in the painstaking detail that the future safety and prosperity of both the UK and the EU will be settled.
Meanwhile we have had all the furore over President Tump's first few days in office. It certainly isn't dull now he's around!! I asked the Foreign Secretary if he will put standing up for British values first in our dealings with the US? He waffled!
It was good to meet a lot of local movers and shakers at a celebration of the work done to promote the Energy Estuary both sides of the Humber organised by the Humber LEP. Earlier I'd managed to ask the Business Secretary what he was doing to ensure the highest possible level of UK steel content in the wind farms being built in the North Sea. It was a very appropriate for me to visit the UK's oldest community radio station, Estuary TV at the Grimsby Institute!
The most important meeting of the week was the one I'd arranged for local nursery providers to air their concerns about how Government changes are likely to impact on them directly to the Early Years Minister. It was a very productive meeting with the Minister's civil servant spending a lot of time afterwards probing the concerns raised by the fantastic local women who lead these nurseries.
Another fantastic local success story is Stylex who are going from strength to strength in supplying products to the automotive industry. I was very impressed by the quality of the work they are doing and the enthusiasm of their staff team.
Finally I was delighted to join Labour colleagues across Lincolnshire for the launch of Labour's campaign for the county council elections in Lincolnshire