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Aaron in action during training

Home-grown World Champion needs celebrating and supporting, says Chesterfield MP

Many people in Chesterfield may not be aware that local lad Aaron Cobley from Staveley is a multiple World and European ITF Taekwondo Champion and multiple World Kickboxing Champion. Local MP Toby Perkins met with Aaron at one of his training sessions to see him in action and is hoping that more people will become interested in the sport and celebrate Aaron’s achievements.

Toby said, “Aaron is a real athlete with a determined and professional approach to taekwondo and kickboxing. To have a multiple world champion, who has won trophies, championship belts and medals in numerous international competitions, is something that Chesterfield people should be very proud of.”

Aaron first took up taekwondo aged just six years old and started to compete when he was only 8. Aaron’s achievements so far include:

Aaron in action during training

Aaron in action during training

  • numerous bronze and silver medals in World Taekwondo and Kickboxing matches from 2012 to present
  • 2015 UITF Open World Taekwondo Championships Gold Individual sparring, Gold Team Sparring
  • 2015 WKU European Champion Gold light contact Gold Kumate
  • 2015 WKU World Kickboxing Championships  Gold light contact, Gold Team light contact Gold Team Kumate
  • 2016 UITF European Taekwondo Championships Gold sparring Gold destruction
  • 2016 WKU World Championships Gold Team Sparring
  • 2017 UITF Taekwondo World Championships  Adult -71kg Gold sparring
  • 2017 WKU World Kickboxing Championships Gold sparring  Gold Team Sparring
  • 2018 ITF Open European Taekwondo Championships Adult -71kg Gold sparring
  • 2018 WKU World Championships -65kg Gold sparring Gold kumate, Gold  team sparring Gold Team Kumate, Gold Team kick lite.

Aaron now works full-time, as well as training almost every day and providing his own training sessions for people who want to learn from a world champion.

Aaron said, “I simply love to compete in both Taekwondo and Kickboxing. Being on the mats in second nature to me as soon as I step on the mat I know what I have to do. I dream of becoming a professional fighter. I am now preparing and training for my debut K1 match in Sheffield. I wish to thank all my family friends and coaches for their ongoing support as without them I would not have achieved this success. Special thanks to my Taekwondo instructor Mr Wagstaff from Outwood Taekwondo Academy in Chesterfield and Master Bradshaw”

Toby added, “It takes a lot of time and money to compete at this level. There are costs for travelling overseas, buying equipment, training venues and entering competitions. Unfortunately, there are not the grants and sponsorship available to Aaron that exist in many other sports and so he has to self-finance most of these things. If there are any local businesses or sports enthusiasts who would be interested in sponsoring Aaron, to help ensure he stays at the top of his field, I hope they will get in touch.”

This year he will travel to Austria for the WKU World Kickboxing Championships and Scotland for the world Taekwondo Team Championships. His debut K1  match is at Brammall Lane Sheffield on Sunday 7th April.

People can follow his achievements via his professional  Facebook page or Instagram @aaronthebarbariancobley. Any individuals or companies interested in sponsoring Aaron please contact him via email aaroncobley99@gmail.com or tel: 07429618995

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Chesterfield LGBT+

Derbyshire LGBT+ have branched out with a brand new centre in Chesterfield

Derbyshire LGBT+ have branched out with a brand new centre in Chesterfield. The launch was attended by MP Toby Perkins along with representatives of many local organisations showing their support for the centre. The centre was officially opened by the Mayor and Mayoress of Chesterfield.

Derbyshire LGBT+ has been a central presence in the local gay community in Derby since the organisation’s launch in 1983. Originally the organisation, set up and run by enthusiastic volunteers from the local gay community, aimed to help other lesbians, gay men and bisexuals come to terms with coming out and meeting others.

The organisation has grown and now also provides support to people who feel that they have difficulties relating to their gender identity. Derbyshire LGBT+ has also become a support organisation for many LGBT organisations and networks, such as schools, to whom they provide information and resources.

The group found there was a growing demand for support in places outside Derby, such as Chesterfield and Swadlincote. The centre will provide a drop-in service and group sessions for LGBT+ people and their family and friends.

Toby Perkins said “We have made huge progress as a society and it is fantastic that a facility like this is here. However, it is important to remember and recognise those campaigners in more difficult and less enlightened times. They were the pioneers who enabled us to get where we are today.

I also know that although things are hugely better people are still attacked or discriminated against because of their sexuality and it is because of that, that centres like this are so crucial and to have this here in Chesterfield is a source of tremendous pride for us.

I know that the more people get to know about the centre, the more it will provide the crucial support that is still required for people at all ends of the journey, whether they are young people discovering about themselves or people at a more advanced stage of life struggling with loneliness and the other trials other older people face but with additional challenges too.

So I am absolutely thrilled that this centre is here to provide this hugely valuable service.”

More information can be found at https://www.derbyshirelgbt.org.uk/chesterfield-centre/

 

 

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Hunting ban event pic

Chesterfield MP calls for clampdown to prevent illegal foxhunting

Parliament marked 14 years since the introduction of the Hunting Act last week, and Chesterfield MP, Toby Perkins, has added his weight to the campaign for a strengthening of the rules to stop illegal fox hunting.

Toby said, “Animal welfare is something that I and my constituents care deeply about and fox hunting is one of the subjects that people contact me about every week. I am immensely proud of the previous Labour Government for introducing the ban on foxhunting but there are too many loopholes that mean foxes are still being chased and brutally killed. Trail hunting is clearly being used by some hunts as a cover for foxhunting. We need to strengthen the Hunting Act and ensure that illegal hunts result in prosecutions. I will be contacting Derbyshire Police to arrange a briefing on how the Act is policed in Derbyshire, and learn more about any attempts to get around the principles of the bill.”

A recent poll by Survation found that only 16% of those living in rural areas believe hunting with dogs is a reflection of countryside values, while 67% do not.  It also showed that a mere 4% of people living in the countryside ever take part in hunting with hounds.  In contrast, 91% said they thought observing nature was a greater reflection of countryside values.

Labour have proposed the following amendments to the Hunting Act 2004:

  1. Review sentencing to ensure effective deterrence includes the use of custodial sentences in line with other wildlife crimes.
  2. Strengthening the criteria on which research licenses are issued.
  3. The removal of the exemption “Use of dogs below ground to protect birds for shooting”, as it risks fights between dogs and wild mammals.
  4. The introduction of a ‘recklessness clause’ to prevent trail hunting from being used as a cover for the illegal hunting of live wild animals.

Toby added, “I appreciate that there is a sense of tradition and a number of jobs related to hunting, but local hunts can maintain this with drag hunting. There is no excuse for foxes to be killed. Trail hunting has been used as a screen for foxhunting and it is important that nobody should feel that they are above the law.”

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Toby with keen gardeners Brian Bailey and Eric Loe

Chesterfield has received trees to plant as part of the Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy

 

Toby with keen gardeners Brian Bailey and Eric Loe

Chesterfield MP Toby Perkins has joined over 500 other MPs to plant trees as part of the Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy, a network of forest conservation initiatives to mark Her Majesty’s lifetime of service to the Commonwealth.

The trees – two silver birch, two rowan, and a hazel – were planted at the Ashgate Road allotment.

They were donated to Toby Perkins thanks to a partnership between the Woodland Trust, Sainsbury’s and ITV, who screened a landmark documentary, The Queen’s Green Planet.

At the heart of the film was a conversation between the Queen and Sir David Attenborough talking informally about climate change and trees.

In support of the programme the Woodland Trust provided 50,000 trees for ITV viewers, and via the Rt Hon Frank Field MP, who conceived the QCC initiative, also offered a special commemorative pack to every MP in the UK.

Woodland Trust Chief Executive Beccy Speight said: “We are delighted so many MPs have decided to join us in our bid to plant trees. They are crucial in improving soil health and water quality, reducing carbon, trapping pollutants, slowing the flow of flood water, providing a home for wildlife or a space for us to breathe. I hope the residents of Chesterfield will enjoy watching them flourish as part of this wonderful legacy initiative.”

 

Toby said “I was very happy to receive the tree saplings as part of the Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy and Woodland Trust initiative and was delighted to present them to the Ashgate Road allotment, which has undergone some impressive improvements in recent times. The trees have been well placed by dedicated gardeners on ‘Brian’s bank’ and I will be returning with interest to see how well they have grown. We don’t always fully appreciate how important trees are to the environment, to biodiversity and the well-being of people, so this initiative goes a small way to increase awareness and tree population.”

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Derbyshire distillery Feb 2019

Chesterfield is the place to be for gin enthusiasts

Chesterfield is proving the place to be for gin enthusiasts, as Derbyshire Distillery expand due to a high demand for their crafted spirits. Their success story was shared with local MP Toby Perkins, who was impressed to learn about their expansion plans.

Experienced brewer David Hemstock has joined the increasingly popular gin market by producing a range of premium quality products using both state of the art and traditional copper alembic stills. The distillery is the first commercial distillery in Chesterfield and was set up in 2018. The products use the best local and International ingredients and fresh, cool Derbyshire water.

Toby said “I am always pleased to learn about local business successes and Derbyshire Distillery have captured the demand for discerning gin drinkers with a master blend and a couple of well flavoured editions. I wish them every success for their expansion and I am delighted to see that Chesterfield is well and truly on the map as a source of top quality drink brands.”

 More information about Derbyshire Distillery can be found at https://www.derbyshiredistillery.com/

 

 

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Toby with team from Royal Primary Care

Toby Perkins in discussion with GPs from Royal Primary Care

Toby with team from Royal Primary Care

The GP shortage and continued issues accessing a GP appointment were amongst topics discussed at a recent update meeting Chesterfield MP held with bosses at Chesterfield practice Royal Primary Care.

Royal Primary Care is a part of Chesterfield Royal Hospital and they stepped in when crisis struck Holywell Medical Group handed back their GP contracts on four sites in 2015. The group now comprises of three sites in Chesterfield, which are located in Grangewood, Inkersall and Staveley, and two in Clay Cross.

The practice team gave a full appraisal of the current situation to Toby. The practice are affected by the national recruitment shortfall of GPs, particularly in deprived areas, where there is often the greatest need.

This shortfall of clinical or non-clinical staff is keenly felt by patients demanding a same-day service. However, the practice were keen to point out the improvements they have made and are continually working on, to improve primary medical care for patients.

Toby said “The Royal Primary Care are clearly working hard to determine where the greatest areas of need are and are actively recruiting to fill the gaps in their provision. Sadly, like many other areas of the country, there is a shortage of permanent GPs to fill the gaps to meet health demand. Government funding is not provided to the areas with the greatest need and this is an issue I will be taking up in parliament. Funding is determined by population but not by levels of deprivation or affluence despite the long established link between poverty and poor health.”

They also discussed the issue of providing state backed indemnity for GPs who commit themselves to permanent jobs in the NHS. Toby said: “We need more GPs to commit to permanent contracts. The Government is investigating providing state backed indemnity to GPs, this may be an opportunity to incentivise more GPs to join up with practices full time which is crucial for the stability and economy of the NHS.”

Recent statistics show that up to 90% of all calls to the practices are answered and up to 80% within 10 minutes. Toby said “Being able to get in touch with your GP practice to make an appointment or enquiry should be straightforward, especially when you are unwell, but patient demand is high at certain times and the practice still estimate that they have 51 fewer appointment slots than they need. I was reassured that the practice are aware of the issues and have plans in place to try and address the shortfall.”

The improvements were recognised by the most recent CQC inspection which had upgraded the previous ‘Inadequate’ grading to ‘Requires Improvement’, and as a result, took Royal Primary Care out of ‘special measures’. They were rated ‘good’ in the Safe and Effective domains. The previous CQC report stated that “The providers had significantly strengthened their leadership and management and had taken a proactive team approach to making and sustaining improvements in quality.”

The next inspection is expected to take place in 2019 and they are continuing to work towards being rated as ‘good’.

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PMQs Question 30th January

 

My son, is one of the thousands of people to have their life chances transformed by Chesterfield College.

‘The College’s funding, like FE colleges around the country, has dropped 30% in real terms since 2010.

Further Education funding is in crisis. Why is the education of young people who go to FE Colleges worth so little to this Government?

The funding crisis that is engulfing Further Education establishments and is impacting on staff and course availability at Chesterfield College was the subject of a question at the latest set of Prime Minister’s Questions, thanks to Chesterfield MP, Toby Perkins.

Toby asked Prime Minister Theresa May why the education of young people who go to FE Colleges was worth so little to the Government? In response the Prime Minister denied the charge though she was unable to provide alternative figures after Mr Perkins informed her that the College had seen a real terms cut in funding of 30% since the Conservative Government came to power in 2010.

The question opened Wednesday’s Prime Minister’s Questions, and it came just 2 weeks after a major Parliamentary debate on Further Education funding that saw MPs from all parties raise concerns about Further Education funding.

The debate was brought to parliament following a 70,000 strong petition bemoaning the scale of Further Education cuts.

Speaking after his question to the PM, Toby Perkins said: “Further Education is crucial to Britain and the College is crucial to Chesterfield. FE Colleges offer an alternative University route to 6th Form which suit some young people’s learning style, it also offers a second chance to some who don’t thrive at school, and with Apprenticeships and adult education it can help people at all stages of life. The funding cuts are brutal and they are costing jobs and threatening courses, and it’s time that Government realised the role that FE plays and supported it properly.”

Following the question Toby was interviewed by ITV Calendar who are producing a piece centred on college funding at Chesterfield College which is expected to air on Wednesday night’s show.

 

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Toby Perkins MP hosts the Parliamentary Pub of the Year Awards

 The inaugural Parliamentary Pub of the Year awards have seen a Cardiff pub, The Four Elms, nominated by Jo Stevens MP, beat off competition from 13 other entrants from across Britain to claim the title.

The awards were held on the 15th of January in the Terrace Marquee in the House of Commons and attended by dozens of MPs, pub industry leaders and supporters of the 14 entrants.

The event, which was the brainchild of the Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Pubs, Toby Perkins, saw nominations from 85 MP’s from the North of Scotland down to Cornwall.

The entrants were whittled down to 14 National finalists as a result of video submissions from the entrants, the finalists videos can be found here: https://twitter.com/ParliPubOTY

At the event MPs and industry bosses were given a handheld device to vote for their choice to claim the prestigious title. With over 30% of the votes, the Four Elms, pipped runner up Kash 22 from Frodsham, Cheshire, nominated by Mike Amesbury MP and third placed The Crown, from Hastings, nominated by Amber Rudd MP.

 

Toby’s nomination the Chesterfield Arms in Chesterfield which was selected by the panel of judges as the East Midlands regional winner. Emma Clarke and Josh Clarke from the pub travelled down to London for the awards ceremony.

The Newbold Road hostelry was chosen by the judged for its strong commitment to charitable giving, importance to the community and its excellent range of real ales that has resulted in it winning the CAMRA Pub of the Season award.

Toby said: “The interest in the awards, the quality of video entries and the positive coverage of the great and diverse range of pubs in Britain has exceeded all our expectations. The event was a great success, and I’d like to thank Rebecca Pickering from my office, David Wilson of the British Beer & Pub Association and all the MPs and pubs who entered for making it such a success.

Already, people are thinking about how to go one stage further and improve their entries next year, and I hope the awards will go from strength to strength”

To learn more about the Parliamentary Pub of the Year awards click here: https://parlipuboty.wordpress.com/

 

 

The 14 nominated finalists were:

Winner: The Four Elms (Jo Stevens Cardiff Central) Wales

Runner Up: Kash 22 (Mike Amesbury, Weaver Vale) North West

Third: The Crown, (Amber Rudd, Hastings & Rye) South East

Yorkshire Winner: Grayston Unity (Holly Lynch MP, Halifax)

North East Winner: The Stapylton Arms (Grahame Morris MP, Easington)

West Midlands Winner: The Robin Hood (Eddie Hughes MP, Walsall North)

East Regional Winner: Kings Arms (Liz Truss MP, South West Norfolk)

East Midlands Winner: Chesterfield Arms (Toby Perkins MP, Chesterfield)

South West Winner: The Westbrook (Claire Perry MP, Devizes)

London Winner: The Alexandra (Stephen Hammond MP, Wimbledon)

Scotland Winner: Brass & Granite (Alan Brown MP, Kilmarnock and Loudoun)

Scotland Runner Up: The Criterion (Stephen Gethins MP, North East Fife)

Wales Runner Up: The Fat Boar Wrecsam (Ian Lucas MP, Wrexham)

North West Runner Up: The Victoria Walshaw (James Frith MP, Bury North)

 

 

 

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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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I hold regular surgeries for my constituents.
Please call 01246 386286 or email toby.perkins.mp@parliament.uk to make a booking.

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