To AV or NO to AV

Today is an historic day with a fundamentally important vote on the future of voting for MPs.

I shall keep this short and sweet as all of the arguments have been played out lots of times by now. Please please remember this change will be for life not just for the next election so it is a really important decision. For me, the over-riding objection I have to AV is that one person's vote can be counted multiple times whereas someone else's is only counted once. Why someone's third preference should carry the same weight as my first one I just cannot get my head round. Let us stick with our tried and tested system and tradition of one person one vote.

We have certainly played our part in Broxbourne, pounding the streets and covering Broxbourne in NO to AV literature (even on Sunday accidentally doing the same road three times - apologies if that was you!). Let's hope that the British public comes out and votes "No" - don't rely on your neighbour to vote "No" for you! My biggest fear is that "Yes" will somehow sneak past the winning line because not enough people come out and vote. Do not let that happen, make sure you vote "No" to AV today.

Get involved!

Now is the perfect time to get involved with Broxbourne Conservatives.Over the coming months we will be:
•    Campaigning to keep open the Cheshunt Urgent Care Centre which, unbelievably, is being downgraded because it has been too successful.
•    Fighting for a NO vote in the upcoming AV referendum where Nick Clegg wants to change the way you vote forever. Under the Alternative Vote system, only Nick Clegg and the Liberal Democrats would be the winners - we would all lose out as power is taken away from voters and given to politicians to make deals behind voters’ backs.
•    Campaigning for as many Conservatives as possible to be elected in the local elections on 5th May.If you want to get involved (be it by delivering leaflets, acting as tellers at polling stations on 5th May, helping out with canvassing or by making a donation to either the NOtoAV or local election campaigns) then please do not hesitate to contact me directly on 078134 79297 or have been involved with Broxbourne Conservatives for the last ten years (since I was 16) and have found it thoroughly rewarding. I have been involved in campaigns to keep Chase Farm Hospital open, firstly to give us an Urgent Care Centre in Cheshunt and now to keep it open. I have been a Borough Councillor for Wormley Turnford for the last four years where I have fought for openness and transparency and for value for money by keeping Council Tax as low as possible whilst maintaining a high quality level of local services.No matter what your priorities are, whether you are Labour, Liberal or Conservative and no matter how old or young you are I urge you to get involved in your local communities and local politics. I have had the opportunity to meet, have dinner and campaign with the likes of Iain Duncan Smith, Michael Gove, and Liam Fox. Most importantly of all, I have had the opportunity to change things for the better in Broxbourne - the reason why most of us get involved in the first place.Throughout my time with Broxbourne Conservatives, I have found my opinions valued, my voice listened to and my contributions appreciated. For that I would like to thank all of my fellow members of Broxbourne Conservatives.The moral of the story is that you can get involved and you can make a difference so please do.

There's a first time for everything...

Last Friday, I was very kindly voted in as Chairman at the Association's AGM. I am very grateful for the support I received.I would like to thank everyone who attended. We had the highest turnout for many a year and it was an enjoyable evening with excellent speeches from Lord Parkinson, our MP Charles Walker and of course the outgoing Chairman David Lewis.On a personal level, I would like to thank David for his tireless work as Chairman for the last four years. No doubt he shall be missed by all for his excellent leadership. I am glad that he is staying on as Treasurer and will continue to contribute.As you may well have noticed by now, this is a new blog and my very first venture into anything of this sort. I thought it would be good to occasionally put my thoughts onto paper so that everyone is aware of what is going on in BPCA (Broxbourne Parliamentary Conservative Association). I'm not sure how often this will be but hopefully it will prove to be worthwhile.Please do get into contact with me, or 078134 79297.Paolo

Save Cheshunts Urgent Care Centre

Re:- Public Meeting on Thursday 17th March 2011 (6.00-7.00pm) at Wolsey Hall, Cheshunt - “Save Cheshunt’s Urgent Care Centre” Many of my constituents will be aware that the Cheshunt Urgent Care Centre has been an enormous success since its launch in October 2009. It provides all of us with a valuable local service that recognises the health needs of both Cheshunt and the surrounding area. Indeed, at times last year, over 700 people a week were using the facility, a resounding vindication of its popularity. Despite the above, we recently learned that it is the intention of the Primary Care Trust to significantly scale back services that are available at the UCC to such a degree that its future viability will be called into question. If the PCT has its way, we will see the removal of all doctor-led services, and all we will be left with will be basic treatment for cuts and bruises. The PCT Board will be publishing a report at the end of the month outlining its proposals to replace our UCC. Therefore, time is of the essence. As your Member of Parliament, I am asking you to join me in opposition to the PCT’s recommendations. We need to make the case for Cheshunt retaining a fully functioning UCC that offers a viable alternative to the Accident & Emergency services based at other hospitals serving the Borough but located in geographically distant or hard to access locations. In view of this, I have organised a public meeting on Thursday 17th March 2011 (6.00-7.00pm), at Wolsey Hall (Windmill Lane, Cheshunt, Hertfordshire, EN8 9AA). I hope you will be able to attend in order to demonstrate your support and make your views known. Yours sincerely, Charles Walker MP

"Liberator" Memorial

Cheshunt to recognise WWII airmen
A memorial service to dedicate the new memorial at St Mary's School Lieutenant Ellis Way, Cheshunt on the 22nd January 2011 at 11.00am.
Lt Ellis was the pilot of a B-24 that came down with engine trouble on the 12th of August 1944, all of the crew perished in the crash not far from where the new school has been built. It was rumoured that it was originally in collision with a 389th B-17 from Nuthampstead but this was found to be untrue.

Broxbourne launches new website

Thank you for your support at the last election. Because of you, David Cameron is the first Conservative Prime Minister in 13 years and the Government’s plans to build a strong economy and a big society are in full swing. Now, to help us communicate with you, we've launched this new local website.