Ruislip Northwood MP Nick Hurd
A new year message from Nick Hurd, Conservative MP for Ruislip, Northwood and Pinner.
IT HAS been a funny old year. A tough time for many and plenty of stuff to be cynical, gloomy and maybe angry about.
It is fair to say that my surgery is not full of people coming to tell me how well things are going for them or the country.
Locally, we continue to have a major challenge in HS2, a subject on which I will continue to represent my constituents’ views to the people in power.
However, I always try to side with the optimists, and this year was marked by two momentous events. The first was the birth of my fifth child after a long gap. I thought it would be like riding a bike and it isn’t! However the sleepless nights are well worth it.
Inevitably as a parent you think about the world they are growing up in; one that is much more complicated than in my youth. My new responsibility makes me even more determined that our children’s future should not be undermined by a huge burden of national debt.
Whatever the difficulties I remain convinced that we are on the right economic course and delighted that unemployment continues to fall. I am also excited by new opportunities opening up for young people.
My greatest pride as a minister is in the work we are doing to develop National Citizen Service which is proving hugely popular with teenagers, as you will see by a visit to the NCS Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/ncs .
Locally, I am thrilled by the consistent improvement I see in our schools, not least Northwood.
The second momentous event? Well of course it had to be the long summer in which the country did two important things very well.
We celebrated 60 years of service to this country by an extraordinary individual. And we hosted the best party on earth, with an Olympics and Paralympics that few of us will forget and which changed the mood of the country for a while.
I don’t think I have ever shouted at a telly louder than when Mo sealed his second gold, and like everyone I was incredibly impressed by the Gamesmakers and their spirit of service to others.
As the minister responsible for our voluntary sector, people often ask me: “So how are you going to build on that fantastic spirit?”
Truth is, we have big plans to do just that, and encourage more people to get involved in their communities. Of course in our area the community spirit is alive and well, and I have been enormously impressed by evidence of it at various street parties; jubilee events and the efforts of fantastic voluntary groups such as Friends of Eastcote House Gardens.
That is the spirit of 2012 which we must take into 2013. A very happy New Year to all.