Gill Furniss MP Labour Member of Parliament for Sheffield Brightside and Hillsborough
I want to take this opportunity to congratulate our returning councillors Talib Hussain (Burngreave), Abdul Khayum (Firth Park), Dawn Dale (Shiregreen and Brightside) and Mike Chaplin (Southey) and to congratulate Toby Mallinson in Hillsborough.
I want to pay tribute to George Lindars-Hammond, who was unfortunately not re-elected. He has served Hillsborough for 11 years and has shown determination and dedication throughout this time. I’m very grateful for all he has done to make Hillsborough a better place for local residents.
Watercliffe Meadows School
It was great to visit Watercliffe Meadows School this month to talk with pupils and staff about a Summer project they have launched. The pupils are aiming to improve Busk Meadow park and are building a campaign to make it a safe, clean and pleasant to enjoy. They shared with me lots of exciting ideas and I’ll be working with them to help bring some of these ideas to fruition. I was also pleased to take part in a Q&A with pupils.
Coronation of HM King Charles III
I was pleased to join many people across the country in marking the Coronation of HM King Charles III over the weekend. It was heart warming to see the many local celebrations that were organised by hard working community groups and local organisations. I am always grateful to the many fantastic organisations in our community that provide so many opportunities for people to come together.
King Edward VII School
The Ofsted report into King Edward VII School caused many parents and carers a great deal of concern about the academisation of the school. I heard from many parents and carers that live in Sheffield Brightside and Hillsborough whose children attend King Edward’s. I agreed with these concerns and as a result wrote to Ofsted asking for a pause.
I am pleased that following representations from myself, other MPs in Sheffield and many concerned parents, Ofsted have deferred the decision awaiting a comparative analysis. I will continue to work with others to ensure that parents and carers concerns are listened to and that Ofsted understand the strong sense of feeling in Sheffield.
Over the last month, my team and I have opened 337 new cases, helping people with their issues and concerns. The most common issues raised with me were: Housing issues, and Asylum and Immigration.
SCCCC King’s Award
I was pleased to welcome Mark Thornton, Chief Executive of Sheffield Churches Council for Community Care (SCCCC), to Parliament to meet and congratulate him and SCCCC on receiving a GSK | The King’s Fund IMPACT Award for 2023. After applications from over 400 charities and a rigorous process, SCCCC was one of ten organisations to receive the award. Our meeting was also a useful opportunity to talk about the important work undertaken by SCCCC in supporting older people. This is a huge achievement and a testament to the hard work and dedication of all the team at SCCCC. My congratulations go to them all.
Wardsend Road Planning Application
I have made an objection to a planning application for a metal recycling facility at Wardsend Road on the basis of the potential disruption to local residents, specifically the noise and pollution as a result. I will continue to monitor this application and make representations as appropriate.
Labour’s Shadow Roads Minister
Traffic Action Network
This month I met with representatives of the Traffic Action Network. It was a productive meeting and an opportunity to learn more about their priorities. We discussed the importance of decarbonising our transport network. The Conservative Government have failed to meet the enormous challenge to decarbonise buses, trains and cars. The next Labour government has a bold plan to decarbonise our transport system, such as boosting electric vehicle charging infrastructure, enabling public control of bus services and rolling out active travel networks.
London Electric Vehicle Company
Further to the meeting highlighted above, this month I had the opportunity to visit the London Electric Vehicle Company, a major provider of electric versions of the iconic London Hackney carriage. I was able to see first hand the factory and discuss the continued challenges facing the sector.
This is something I have been passionate about pushing as Shadow Minister for Roads. While all efforts to increase the number of electric vehicles on our roads are to be welcomed, there must also be adequate provision of charging facilities. The Government have totally failed to roll out even a fraction of the charging facilities that are needed. I’ve listened closely to the needs of those in the sector and continue to work at pace to develop Labour’s plan for EV infrastructure ahead of the General Election.