News

Diary - lobbying new rail franchisee

Into the Commons on our last day before my MP status is removed and I return once more to be the prospective parliamentary candidate for S Dorset. I had a pre-arranged and very important meeting with our new rail franchisee, FirstGroup, who'd taken the franchise off SW Trains.

Diary - a special ceremony in Swanage

This morning I had the privilege and honour to attend the boathouse opening and naming ceremony of the new Shannon Class lifeboat at Swanage. As you'd expect, the turnout was high, all coming to see the immaculate new boat and smart crew.

Diary - questioned by 10 year olds

Up early and into the office before climbing aboard my motorcycle and heading to Swanage. I went straight to the bus deport by the station to meet Morebus MD Andrew Wickham, a most charming man, who'd kindly asked me to launch their new open-top bus service for the summer.

W2W - been a pleasure to serve

THIS will be my last column of the Parliament.

I would like to thank the Echo for giving me this privilege, which I hope has informed, entertained and, no doubt, caused a few jaws to clench.

Serving as your MP for the past seven years has been an immense privilege and honour.

Diary - standing again for parliament

Into the office early before popping across to CCHQ for a photo with the PM. Clearly, others wanted one too judging from the number of MPs I met. Then back to Dorset, into the office, before heading to Winfrith for my selection meeting with my Association.

Diary - Question No 2, Mr Speaker

An air of expectation hung over the Chamber all morning as we waited for PMQs. I had Qu No 2 and used it to point out Mr Corbyn's lack of credibility as a leader when it came to issues like MI5, the police and of course our Armed Forces.

Diary - Lunch with ITV's head of news

There's a distinct end of term feel to Parliament as we all attempt to clear our desks, as far as that is possible, before heading to our constituencies to fight the general election.

Diary - safeguarding monkeys as pets

In early, through the routine matters, and then on to drafting my speech for the Adjournment Debate in the evening. Working with Dr Alison Cronin, the remarkable CEO of Monkey World in my constituency, I decided to apply for a debate on the vexed question of primates as pets.

Speech - Primates as Pets

It seems barely credible in this age of enlightened animal welfare provisions and animal rights, but it is still entirely legal for someone to walk into a pet shop and buy any one of 66 species of monkey as easily as they can buy a goldfish in a plastic bag.

Diary - VIP day at StreetWise

Up early and on to my motorcycle for a nice ride to Portland. I headed straight to St John's Church Hall where I met up with Dave Farmer, who is one of the volunteers running the  foodbank.