John Whittingdale visited Burnham on Crouch Rugby Club to see the volunteers in action as part of the NatWest RugbyForce weekend. Natwest Rugby Force is a nationwide programme designed to make rugby clubs stronger by improving and renovating their facilities with the support of volunteers and the local community over a summer weekend. In its ninth year, NatWest RugbyForce has helped over 650 clubs.

John saw volunteers clearing ditches, repairing fences and helping to prepare the grounds for the beginning of the new season.

John is pictured with Club President, Niall Hornett, Burnham Councillor Peter Elliott and Mayor of Burnham, Wendy Stamp.

John Whittingdale presented Kam, Proprietor of Chillies Indian Fusion in Oaklands House, South Woodham Ferrers, and his chef a certificate and apron for being Highly Commended in the 2018 Tiffin Cup competition.

The Tiffin Cup winner is chosen from a list of restaurants that have been nominated by local MPs. This year, 60 restaurants were nominated by their MPs. The competition aims to raise the profile of the quality and diversity of South Asian food in Britain while raising money for the charity World Vision.

 

John Whittingdale MP visited a street scene set up in Parliament by the charity Guide Dogs to learn more about the challenges that people with sight loss face when walking the streets. At the event, the MP for Maldon dodged a pavement parked car, stumbled across a variety of street clutter, and visited a “shared space” area lacking safety features such as kerbs and pedestrian crossings. He also heard from guide dog owners how dealing with these obstacles can leave them scared and reluctant to go out.

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John Whittingdale joined Maldon district Councillors and others to mark the opening of the Maldon Saltmarsh Coast Hub. This is supported by the Dengie Gateway Project which has been supported by the Government’s Coastal Communities Fund.

The Dengie Gateway Project has delivered a number of elements, including, a 5 year District Tourism Marketing Strategy, the new Visit Maldon District website, eshop and improved social media presence. The Project has also sought to promote the District’s wonderful Saltmarsh Coast through the installation of new signage and way-marking, dedicated webpages and the creation of a network of inspiring and bespoke Saltmarsh Coast Visitor Information Hubs, with the Maldon Saltmarsh Coast Hub in the centre.

 

John Whittingdale attended the Royal Yachting Association “Push the Boat Out” event at the Blackwater Sailing Club’s Open Day at Heybridge Basin.

RYA Push the Boat Out is intended to give people the opportunity to get out on the water and to find out how easy it is to get involved in sailing and windsurfing. Hundreds of Sailing Clubs and training centres take part throughout the month of March, including Blackwater sailing Club, Royal Corinthian Yachting Club, South Woodham Ferrers Yacht Club and Marconi Sailing Club in the Maldon constituency.

Blackwater Sailing Club was established in 1899 and is one of the leading sailing clubs on the East Coast with more than 1,000 members. It has an active Cadet section and it offers both cruiser and dinghy sailing. The Open Day was the most successful ever with 295 visitors and over 30 new members signed up on the day. Over 500 tasters provided for our visitors including John who went out for a sail in a Quest on the large freshwater lake owned by the Club. 

Blackwater Sailing Club website

Picture 1: John is pictured with Rob Haigh, Deputy Cadet Skipper

Picture 2: John is pictured with Rear Commodore, Nigel Butler