In retaliation for the UK’s support of Ukraine, I have been hit with Russian sanctions. My name is on a list of 287 parliamentarians banned by the Kremlin from entering Russia. Moscow claims British MPs have pushed “hostile rhetoric and far-fetched accusations” and whipped up “Russophobic hysteria” after Vladimir Putin decided to unleash the biggest military attack in Europe since World War Two. I am proud to be on this list with many of my colleagues in the House of Commons and we will wear our sanctions as a badge of honour. The UK Government has led the world in providing weapons and training to the Ukrainian Government, organising sanctions against Russia, sending our armed forces to NATO bases in the region and supporting refugees. We continue to stand with Ukraine.
Local Bike Shop Day took place over the weekend so I paid a visit to Honeysuckle Wood, a fantastic Monmouth business specialising in traditional and retro bicycles. Based at the former Griffin pub in Whitecross Street, owners Nick and Tanya Trotman are doing a sterling job of restoring the Grade-II listed building alongside running their business. They offer everything from bike repairs and parts through to gifts ranging from enamelware to soap and larder items. In keeping with the Griffin’s long-tradition as a licenced premises, you can also enjoy a range of traditional hand-crafted bottled beers and ciders from local brewers. Tea and coffee is served daily too. Nick and Tanya are on hand for all the cycling advice and repairs you need. With better weather ahead, now is the perfect time to dust off the wheels and get your bike ready for summer.
Rain failed to dampen spirits at Monmouth Sports Ground on Sunday. The town’s football, rugby, cricket, tennis and bowls clubs got together for a community/family day and while the weather didn’t play ball, it was wonderful to see children and adults alike practice their skills or try a new sport. Monmouth may be a small town but we are big on opportunities and this is all in aid of revamping the clubhouse, which is no longer fit for purpose. You can read about the project and donate here: www.crowdfunder.co.uk/p/monmouthsports2022
Are you a student in the Monmouth constituency aged 16-18? Would you like to win a trip to the Falkland Islands? A competition has been launched by the Falkland Islands Government to mark the 40th anniversary of the liberation of the Falkland Islands. Answer the following question in the form of a film, podcast, essay or poster to be in with a chance of winning: What do the Falkland Islands mean to you? Full information is on the Falklands Forty Schools Competition website: www.falklands40comp.co.uk. Good luck!
*Published in the Monmouthshire Beacon on 4 May 2022 and the Abergavenny Chronicle on 5 May 2022*