The highlights of last week were going round local schools presenting prizes in my Christmas Card competition and the conclusion of my Small Business Saturday Awards with a well attended Star Network event organised by Sixty Six Design Agency at the Admin Centre.
It was great to join assemblies at Henderson Avenue, Scunthorpe C of E, Bottesford Juniors, Bottesford Infants and Priory Lane Community School to enjoy being with some of the fantastic children doing so many great things in our local schools.
I managed to visit a number of the great shortlisted small businesses: Taylor's Family Butchers, the Button Box, Regal Leaf and Coffee, the Crow's Nest, Ashby Funeral Care and the Flower Theatre. I was struck by how passionate everyone was about their great business.
I met the wonderful people running the other shortlisted businesses at the awards ceremony: Cleatham Hall Hotel, Peekaboo Day Nursery, One Click Photography, Twin Tigers and Crossfit Scunthorpe. They all had that same passion.
In running the competition I wanted to celebrate the fantastic work that small businesses do in our community. With over a thousand people nominating over a hundred small businesses that confirmed for me how much we value their work. Your votes in the on line poll crowned the Crow's Nest in Bottesford as Champion Small Business and Taylor's Family Butchers in Ashby for Great Customer Service. Really all the people in all our local small businesses deserve our praise. As Christmas approaches I hope we will all take the opportunity to buy some things from them.
Back in Westminster I welcomed local firefighters for their lobby. They are right to ask for our support to stop further cuts in their service. We need them to keep us safe and secure.
Martin Vickers MP and I both have Centrica power stations in our constituencies so we were pleased that the Energy Minister met with us and Centrica to discuss how the industry and government can best work together in the future.
I chaired a meeting of MPs, clinicians and representatives of pharmaceutical companies about the progress we have made in tackling lymphona.
Finally I spoke at the local NASUWT dinner held at Grange Park who did an excellent job. Once I'd confessed to being a lifelong member of another teachers' union - the NUT - and taken the inevitable heckles the evening went well!!!