Reporting Back - November 2021
Since my last email to you there has been some very upsetting news with the deaths of both Rt Hon James Brokenshire MP and Sir David Amess MP.

Losing James to cancer so young is a great loss to British politics. He was decent, honest and clever.

I was both shocked and sickened when I heard the news that Sir David had been attacked whilst holding his constituency surgery. He was a dedicated Member of Parliament, always putting his constituents first. It is fitting that the Prime Minister has announced that Southend will be awarded city status, a cause that Sir David had championed for decades. I had known Sir David for many years, and he was extraordinarily generous and kind to all.

As ever, I am always happy to be contacted if I can be of any help with anything, or to answer any questions or comments you may have – just simply reply to this email. 
The Budget
The last eighteen months have been difficult and challenging.

Last week the Chancellor of the Exchequer set out the Government’s Budget and Spending Plans which prioritise investment in innovation and skills as well as continuing to support businesses and working families.

I know how tough the environment has been for local businesses and I have helped many access grants and lending. I am pleased that the Chancellor announced measures to encourage innovation and investment together with the continuation of R&D tax credits. In Wimbledon we have vibrant hospitality and leisure companies and a busy retail sector. The 50% business rates discount will help these businesses over the coming year.

I spoke in the Budget debate and you can read my full speech here.

I warned against the risks of inflation and excessive taxation and made the point that we must prioritise faster and more sustainable economic growth making sure that business succeeds.

I also made the point that levelling up in one area must not mean levelling down in another. Levelling up must not be about just geography; it must be about opportunity.

Finally, I made the point that plans to improve healthcare in our area by building a brand new emergency care hospital in Sutton and much needed regeneration of St Helier Hospital are ready for Treasury approval. These plans were put together by the local NHS after local consultation. St Helier is safe and has always been so. 
Wimbledon Police Station is still under threat
Last week I raised the Mayor of London’s plans to close Wimbledon Police Station once again in the House of Commons.

You can watch my contribution here.

The only way to save Wimbledon Police Station is for the Mayor of London to change his mind. The Mayor should now accept that our police station is needed for operational reasons.

I shall continue to make it clear to the Mayor that the best option to keep our community safe is to keep Wimbledon Police Station open.
Winter Vaccines
Vaccines are our best protection this winter.

Getting the Covid-19 booster and flu vaccines if you're eligible will help to protect you and those around you.

You can find out more about the vaccines and how to book them here:

You can also find details of your nearest Covid-19 vaccine walk in clinic in SW London here.

This now includes 12 to 15 year olds and parents/guardians Pfizer walk in clinics.

Ban Plastic in Wet Wipes
Ahead of COP26, I supported the Bill to ban plastics in wet wipes.

I know parents want to do the right thing and stop this damage to nature.  
Environment Bill
When the Environment Bill receives Royal Assent it will enhance our natural world for generations to come and crystalise the Government’s commitment to leave the natural world in a better state today than how we found it. Enshrining in law long-term legally binding targets on biodiversity, net zero, air quality, resource management and water quality and storm overflows.

I am pleased the Government will look again at the issue of water quality.

Whilst the Duke of Wellington’s original amendment did not have a time scale or cost cap the direction of travel was correct, and you can read my full statement on this here.

I am pleased that the Government will be bringing forward new measures on Monday to tackle this important issue and ensure our water quality improves and less sewage is pumped into our rivers and seas. I shall look carefully at the Government’s amendment and will provide a further update in due course. 
Parking Charges U-Turn
I am pleased that Merton Council has U-turned on their implementation of their controversial Parking Charges which has been consistently opposed by local Conservative Councillors and the local community.

The tax would have cost residents up to £690 a year just to park their car outside their home. The fact this has been postponed is good news, I hope the council will permanently end these proposals and not simply bring them forward again after the elections next year. 
Wimbledon Park Golf Club
The All England Lawn Tennis Club bought out the remaining years of the lease from Wimbledon Park Golf Club in 2018. They have developed a masterplan which has proposals to build an 8,000-seat show court and 38 smaller courts, and a public park.

A number of local residents have raised serious concerns about the impact this will have on the area, particularly developing on Metropolitan Open Land. There is also a concern that the landscape created by Capability Brown will change, although clearly a golf course would not classify as a heritage landscape either.

The Council indicated that the deadline for comments on AELTCs planning application for Wimbledon Park Golf Course was 30th Sept, although I understand that the Council will take objections up to the date the Officer’s Report is finalised and published. The planning application reference number is 21/P2900 and you can have your say by emailing
Christmas in the Village, Sunday 5th December, 10am to 5am
The ever-popular festive shopping and family fun day is returning for 2021 and this year's 'comeback' event is a fantastic showcase and celebration of everything that our fabulous Wimbledon Village has to offer - so please do come along and enjoy the day.

The event includes a Christmas Market, Santa's Grotto, Santa and Elves horseback parade, festive food and drink, fairground rides, children's story time, music and dance sessions, face-painting, balloon shows, and music from a host of choirs and bands.

The day will be wrapped up with the switching on of the Christmas tree lights with sing-along carols, mince pies and a glass of mulled wine for the grown-ups.
Wimbledon Park Walk and Talk #PictureMeHappy Competition
Wimbledon Park Walk and Talk are holding a picture competition, with a chance to win £100 worth of prizes from local business.
#PictureMeHappy Competition – launches on November 1st

Here at The Walk and Talk Movement we are all about putting a smile on people’s faces every Saturday morning at 10.30am with a lovely walk in your local green space…because being happy and healthy can be a walk in the park.

So, in this spirit of happiness, we are launching a competition to find out what brings you joy. All you need to do is post a picture* on:
…of something that makes you happy and tell us why in the caption to the picture and use the hashtag #PictureMeHappy.

Somebody or something you love, a best friend or lovely relative, your amazing pet, local green spaces, something you love doing, a fantastic piece of art or literature, an amazing building, your favourite place, an unforgettable experience...anything that makes you happy.

We will then judge all the pictures we receive and announce the prize winners at our Christmas Wimbledon Park Walk and Talk on 18th December - where the community can also join us for a happy festive drink.
For more information requests please contact Ali Palmer on 07808 587606
Promoted by David Jones on behalf of Stephen Hammond MP, both of 3 Summerstown, London, SW17 0BQ