There are many facets to the role of an MP. There is the work in the House of Commons; committee work, debating in the Chamber itself and the multitude of meetings with various groups and organisations who want time to discuss their particular area of interest. The other side of the job is the constituency work, something that I always try to prioritise. I have always believed that my ultimate responsibility is to the people of the High Peak and the most rewarding aspect of the job is when I and my office can help a constituent in real need and solve their problems, or when I can do something that helps, supports or promotes the High Peak.
Ever since I was elected, I have tried each year to do a project to either raise money or support something in the community. It started with sponsored walks, which between them raised several thousand pounds. Last year I did two weeks working with voluntary groups as well as a fund raising evening with Anton Du Beke. This year I decided to organise a charity cricket match to commemorate the day, 38 years ago, when for the only time in history first class cricket was snowed off, in Buxton.
I never expected the event to take off the way it did. Starting with an initial aim to raise maybe a couple of thousand pounds for the Derbyshire, Leicester & Rutland Air Ambulance, it grew into a huge event. The Air Ambulance serves the whole of the High Peak and given the terrain forms a vital part of the emergency services across the constituency. The Air Ambulance, like the various Mountain Rescue teams across the High Peak, has come to the aid of many people who the normal ambulances just couldn’t get to.
The event on the 2nd of June was a great success and whilst the event was held in Buxton, commemorating the snow of 1975, the Man of the Match, Lenny Allsopp, was from Glossop so it was a real High Peak wide affair. The victorious MP’s and Celebrities team also included Glossop’s Adam Corbally, who now has the Winner’s trophy proudly displayed on his stall in Glossop Market. I would like to thank everyone who took part, the celebrities, my fellow Members of Parliament who travelled from as far away as Plymouth to play, all the sponsors and the approximately 700 people who turned up to watch the game. The result was that we raised just over £10,000 for a vital service much used and needed across the High Peak and I was able to use my job to persuade and cajole various celebrities and organisations to lend their support to what turned out to be a great day in so many ways.