MP Anne-Marie Trevelyan: Getting to grips with ministerial role
Usually, the summer recess is a quiet time in hard politics, allowing MPs time to be back home and touring their constituencies to catch up with locals, charities, clubs and friends.
All that has been very different this year; we have a new Prime Minister in Boris Johnson, along with a new Government.
I am extremely proud to have been asked to serve as Minister for Defence Procurement at the MOD. I am enjoying getting to grips with my new portfolio and the opportunity to build on UK plc’s prosperity agenda, working with world class defence businesses, many in the North East.
I’m delighted that Boris Johnson is our Prime Minister. I believe he is the best man for the uniquely challenging job of delivering Brexit and uniting our country after we have left the EU. I believe that Boris will be a leader who reaches across political, regional and policy divides, which is what our great country and four nations need.
But delivering Brexit is the single most critical democratic issue which needs to be delivered if trust in politics is not to be fatally eroded. Boris wants to deliver Brexit whilst ensuring the UK can’t be locked into a backstop forever. He will negotiate in good faith and is confident that a solution can be reached.
He is also the only candidate who is clear that we will leave on October 31, with a deal or without.
I held a debate in Westminster Hall on defence spending. It was well attended by MPs from across the House. Topics included regional funding disparities, how money is spent, investing in armed forces’ training, and replacing equipment.
I was delighted to have the opportunity to raise this important subject and hear how much support there is across the House for making sure our armed forces are supported and that the money is well spent.
I welcomed Minster for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs David Rutley to the North East and we discussed the prospect of a Forestry Investment Zone for Northumberland.
As we move towards a carbon neutral future, planting trees will play a vital role. It’s great to see Northumberland County Council, Northumberland National Park and other groups starting to really work together to that end.
I also raised the issue of funding for health services in rural areas with the Minster for Health, and I am delighted that Northumberland CCG will receive an extra £1.1million for emergency ambulance services in sparsely populated areas this year. By 2023-24, Northumberland CCG will receive £98.5million. This is fantastic news.
I trust that you are having a restful summer. I look forward to catching up with many in the weeks ahead.