So, the first week of the new year has come to an end and work has come straight back into full swing. In between seasonal festivities I have been keeping busy across the ward since my last update a few weeks ago and have enjoyed talking to so many local residents about their Christmas and New Year.
On the 19th December I was in the full council meeting where I was glad to have the opportunity to congratulate Dane Royd Junior & Infant School in my ward for its recent Outstanding OFSTED rating and to make suggestions for how we can continue to drive up attainment in all schools across Wakefield. It is always so encouraging to see our schools thriving and it was great to follow that speech with a visit to West Bretton School the following day for their Christmas lunch which was a fantastic festive affair!

I was out supporting Wakefield in a different way on Boxing Day as I attended Wakefield Trinity’s match against Leeds Rhinos. Despite a good early showing, I was disappointed to see the Rhinos take the match but I am confident that the team can continue to do us proud in their upcoming fixtures against Doncaster and Coventry.

On the 27th, I met with a local resident in Netherton to discuss the ongoing reliability problems with local bus services. Having heard from numerous constituents about buses missing out stops or simply not turning up at all, I am determined that bus operators be accountable for the services they provide and will continue to argue for improvements as we go into 2019.

The following day, it was an honour to attend the wedding of a good friend and former general manager of Oneworld Travel Group, Ian Burgess who married his long-term partner David Boldra. It was a beautiful day and such a lovely occasion and I wish them both all the best of luck in the future.

Since New Year, my travel business has been busy with the height of the early January booking period, and I have been delighted to see that despite all the talk of uncertainty surrounding Brexit, we have seen a strong increase in the number of passengers booked to visit Europe compared to last year.

On Saturday evening, I also bumped into a number of constituents at the Cineworld cinema as well as the legendary Neil Fox of Wakefield Trinity. The job of a councillor really does follow wherever you go!