Archive | December, 2018

Toby with Matt Kelcher, Head of Public Affairs and Research at the Charity Retail Association and Kevin Brown, Shop Manager at the Ashgate Hospicecare store

Chesterfield’s MP is a “Good Cause Santa Claus” at local charity shop!

Chesterfield MP Toby Perkins visited the Ashgate Hospicecare store in Hasland as part of a national campaign to encourage people to become charitable shoppers in the run up to Christmas.

The Charity Retail Association, which represents 80 per cent of charity shops in the UK, including Ashgate Hospicecare’s charity shops, is running the #GoodCauseSantaClaus campaign, which asks people to add a little Christmas spice to their Secret Santa by buying gifts only from charity shops. Companies, schools, social groups and individuals are all encouraged to join in.

The initiative seeks to highlight the many benefits of shopping in charity shops. Apart from raising money for hundreds of good causes, charity shops encourage people to reuse and recycle, they also provide volunteering and training opportunities, keep high streets buzzing and much more besides.

Toby Perkins said:

“I really enjoyed my visit to Ashgate Hospicecare’s shop which sells such a diverse range of quality items.  I was very pleased with my purchases – pair of red socks and snooker themed mug!

“If you want to get your Secret Santa something extraordinary that you know they’ll cherish then I can definitely recommend it.  It was also great to know that my purchases were directly supporting the work of Ashgate Hospicecare, who do so much to support people with life limiting illnesses in Chesterfield.”

Kevin Brown, the shop’s manager said:

“We’re right behind the #GoodCauseSantaClaus campaign which encourages any club, group or workplace to participate in a Secret Santa game and to buy their gifts only in charity shops. Where better to find a bargain!?

“If you buy your Secret Santa present at one of our 14 stores you can know that every penny of profit we raise goes back into providing care and support to our patients across North Derbyshire.”

Matt Kelcher, Head of Public Affairs and Research at the Charity Retail Association said:

“Every time you buy something from a charity shop you’re not only getting a high quality product at an affordable price, you’re helping to keep items out of landfill, boost volunteering opportunities and support a great cause. So, buying your Secret Santa gift in a charity shop is a great way to spread some Christmas cheer.

“We’re really grateful to Toby for his support for the #GoodCauseSantaClaus campaign and his backing of Chesterfield’s brilliant local charity shops.”

Toby with Matt Kelcher, Head of Public Affairs and Research at the Charity Retail Association and Kevin Brown, Shop Manager at the Ashgate Hospicecare store

Toby with Matt Kelcher, Head of Public Affairs and Research at the Charity Retail Association and Kevin Brown, Shop Manager at the Ashgate Hospicecare store

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Toby with food bank volunteer Jim, and local councillors Avis Murphy, Tom Murphy and Ray Catt

More people than ever will be forced to rely on foodbanks in Chesterfield this year warns local MP

Figures from Chesterfield Food Bank showed that they helped feed almost 300 people last Christmas, and Chesterfield MP Toby Perkins has warned that he expects the number to increase again this year and has urged residents to provide donations to help those in need.

Toby visited the Loundsley Green Food Bank to take in his own donation this Christmas and to speak to the staff and volunteers who work there. Toby was joined by local councillors, Avis Murphy, Tom Murphy and Ray Catt.

Toby said, “I am always impressed by the dedication of the volunteers at our food banks but disappointed that people are becoming increasingly dependent on them. The Chesterfield food bank provided food parcels to over 280 people last Christmas and I suspect that this number will increase again this year. I urge people to donate what they can this Christmas to help those in need.

Toby added, “Food prices have continued to increase whilst wages and benefits have not kept up with prices. We have also seen the disastrous roll-out of Universal Credit continue, which is causing massive disruption and leaving families without the money they need to pay the bills and buy food. We are also seeing vulnerable people losing their disability benefits and being expected to contribute more to their own care. The Government have abrogated their responsibilities and I am very grateful that we have a strong community spirit in Chesterfield to help protect in the direst circumstances.”

Toby with food bank volunteer Jim, and local councillors Avis Murphy, Tom Murphy and Ray Catt

Toby with food bank volunteer Jim, and local councillors Avis Murphy, Tom Murphy and Ray Catt

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Toby with Erica Kipling, Matthew Phillips, Daisy Smith, William Hallam, Evie Jackson and Joe Savage.

MP responds to pupils’ plea on plastics

The Derbyshire Times reported on the 22nd November that around 65 youngsters at Old Hall Junior School in Brampton had written letters to local businesses to raise awareness about the impacts of plastic on oceans and animals. Chesterfield MP Toby Perkins saw the story in the newspaper and immediately got in touch with the school to support the campaign.

Toby said, “I was touched to read that one pupil spent her lunch break in the library to look up my office contact details. I fully support this important campaign and hope that it makes residents and businesses in Chesterfield look again at their use of plastic products. The over-use of plastics is having a detrimental effect locally in terms of litter and added waste, as well as globally on our oceans and wildlife. It was great to visit the school and be able to discuss this important issue with the children”

The letters from pupils provide advice on small changes they could make, such as using paper, metal or reusable straws, to make a big difference. The school has received a positive response to the campaign from many local businesses.

Toby added, “I am very proud of the schools in Chesterfield, who are teaching students about what they can do to improve the environment so that hopefully when you get to my age, a long time from now, the planet is not ruined by pollution and waste.”

Toby with Erica Kipling, Matthew Phillips, Daisy Smith, William Hallam, Evie Jackson and Joe Savage.

Toby with Erica Kipling, Matthew Phillips, Daisy Smith, William Hallam, Evie Jackson and Joe Savage.

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Toby with ambulance crew, Michelle Martin and Rebecca Stokes

Chesterfield MP shadows paramedics in Derbyshire

Chesterfield MP, Toby Perkins, spent the day as an observer with the East Midlands Ambulance Service to see first-hand how the crew responds to 999 emergencies and learn more about the service they provide and challenges they face on a daily basis.

Speaking after his shift, Toby said “The dedication and expertise of the paramedics and technicians is exceptional and they approach their role with empathy, dedication and a good sense of humour. I was struck by the variety of calls that they have to respond to on a shift. They really don’t know what they will have to respond to next, from something relatively minor to serious traffic accidents or suspected heart attacks. The crews have to be ready for anything.”

Toby with ambulance crew, Michelle Martin and Rebecca Stokes

Toby with ambulance crew, Michelle Martin and Rebecca Stokes

Toby added, “There are pressures on our ambulance service that have caused unacceptable delays for several of my constituents who have called 999 in an emergency. These pressures are being exacerbated by patient holdover times at A&E departments, difficulties securing GP appointments, cuts to health & social care and other factors. I have discussed these issues with senior managers at EMAS but it was interesting to see how this is impacting on ambulance crews.

“One of the biggest frustrations for paramedics is when they are called out to non-emergency situations that did not require an ambulance, which could be preventing them from attending serious incidents. It is important for people to remember that the ambulance is an emergency service and should only be called for life-threatening conditions or serious injuries.”

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Toby with the runners-up, Octavia Inns, Alicja Novak, Lauren Coupe, Heidi Hurst and the winner, Hetty Stewart

Chesterfield College students bring artistic flair to MP’s Christmas card competition

A festive atmosphere and stunning artwork was on display at Chesterfield town hall as Toby Perkins MP announced the winning design of his Christmas card for 2018.

This year's winning design

This year’s winning design

In previous years Toby has asked a different local school to design his Christmas card, but this year he challenged students at Chesterfield College and had high expectations for the winning design.

Toby said, “The quality of entries this year has been excellent and made it difficult to pick an overall winner. The use of colour, the thematic content and the exceptional artwork from all the entrants should make Chesterfield College very proud. My winner for this year was Hetty Stewart’s fantastic depiction of Chesterfield town centre at Christmas, which is bright, festive, and has a great attention to detail. Hetty has clearly put a lot of work into her design and I would like to say well done to her and all the runners-ups.”

The Mayor and Mayoress of Chesterfield hosted the presentation event for the winner and runner ups of this year’s competition and were joined by students, parents, college staff, councillors and the local businesses who sponsored this year’s card. Over 3,000 cards will now be sent out to Chesterfield residents, businesses, organisations, MPs and dignitaries such as the Queen and Prime Minister.

Toby added, “I would like to say a big thank you to the businesses that have sponsored this year’s Christmas card and made this event possible. They are Weightron Bilanciai, Casa Hotel, CCS Media and the Skills People Group.”

Toby with the runners-up, Octavia Inns, Alicja Novak, Lauren Coupe, Heidi Hurst and the winner, Hetty Stewart

Toby with the runners-up, Octavia Inns, Alicja Novak, Lauren Coupe, Heidi Hurst and the winner, Hetty Stewart

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Welcome

I am Toby Perkins, Labour's Member of Parliament for Chesterfield. If you would like to get in touch with me, my office is open and can be reached by phone on 01246 386 286. I also hold regular surgeries so that constituents can meet me and I can take up their concerns. If you would like to make an appointment then please do contact my office. Thank you for visiting.

Contact Toby

Tel: 01246 386286
Email: toby.perkins.mp@parliament.uk
Post: 113 Saltergate, Chesterfield, S40 1NF

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