Sharon Hodgson MP

Working hard for Washington and Sunderland West.

Sharon in and around Washington and Sunderland West - some highlights

Leighton Bell, aged 8, of John F Kennedy Primary School has scooped the top prize in Washington and Sunderland West MP, Sharon Hodgson's annual Christmas Card Competition.

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Sharon and winners of her Christmas Card Competition. Copyright Simon Farrell 2017.

The John F Kennedy pupil’s design emerged as the overall winner from dozens of competition entries from local primary school children during an awards ceremony today at the Washington Arts Centre.

The panel of judges, which as well as Sharon, comprised: Anthony Sutherland, Managing Director of Washington Components Ltd; Will Pitcairn, Deputy Manager at Sainsbury’s Washington; Lauren Ruff, PR Ambassador at Sainsbury’s Washington, and; Matthew Blyth, Audience Development Officer at Washington Arts Centre.

Leighton’s design will now be printed on the front of Sharon’s Christmas card and will be sent to top politicians and public figures across the country, as well as local groups, organisations and community leaders.

Leighton won the 4/5/6 age-category group. The two other age-category winners were Anya Charlton of Bexhill Academy in the Nursery and Reception year group category, and Matilda Smith of Grindon Hall Christian School in the 1/2/3 Year Group Category, who will both have their designs featured on the inside of the Christmas Card.

Sharon’s Most Promising Artist Award, chosen and donated by Susan M Coles, National Society of Education in Art & Design (NSEAD) Honorary Fellow, was presented to Rio Miyauchi from Wessington Primary School.

Speaking at the awards ceremony, Sharon said:

“It is always an absolute honour and delight to run this competition each year and kick off the festive period by celebrating the wonderful creativity of local school children from across the constituency.

“The talent and imagination of the children on display never fails to astound me, and Leighton’s design showed a unique and creative flair. It will be such a wonderful design to send out across the political world and in our local community.

“As always, thanks must go to the teachers, school staff and the parents and guardians for their support, and of course, most importantly, the children who make the day such a memorable one. A special mention must go to the Arts Centre and local businesses who help make the day such a success.” 

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Sharon and overall winner of her Christmas Card Competition. Copyright Simon Farrell 2017. 

JOHN F KENNEDY PRIMARY SCHOOL PUPIL CROWNED CHAMPION OF MP’S CHRISTMAS CARD COMPETITION

Leighton Bell, aged 8, of John F Kennedy Primary School has scooped the top prize in Washington and Sunderland West MP, Sharon Hodgson's annual Christmas Card Competition. Sharon and winners...

Sharon receives response from Rolton Kilbride - 7th Nov, 2017

Response from Rolton Kilbride

Sharon receives response from Rolton Kilbride - 7th Nov, 2017

Sharon receives response from Rolton Kilbride - 7th Nov, 2017 Read more

Sharon Hodgson MP's report Oct-Nov 2017 number 98

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News from Westminster

Sharon Hodgson MP's report - Oct-Nov 2017 number 98

Sharon Hodgson MP's report Oct-Nov 2017 number 98 News from Westminster Read more

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This week, Sharon has written a letter to Sunderland City Council regarding the proposed Rolton Kilbride Gasification plant in Washington, on behalf of constituents, to register her objection to the planning application which was received on the 23rd October. 

This follows concerns raised by many constituents who have written to Sharon over recent weeks and also from her research on the proposed plant, which included attending one of the public exhibitions put on for local residents by Rolton Kilbride. 

After coming to an informed decision, Sharon believes that this plant would not be beneficial to the local people of Washington and Sunderland West and has set out her reasoning for opposing the plant in a letter to the Council (see below), including: the impact on traffic and congestion in the area; the impact on the environment and the emissions that will be released; the impact on jobs, and; the impact on local communities in the immediate vicinity of the plant and the wider area. 

Sharon is encouraging as many local residents to submit their own comments on the planning application to ensure that the concerns of residents are registered fully and in numbers that show the wide-scale opposition to the plant. Local residents can submit their comments by going to Sunderland City Council's website and logging in to add their comments. This can be done here.

http://www.sunderland.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=OY9TXMBB00Q00

You can read Sharon's original letter to the Council by going to this link or viewing it below.

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07/11/2017 - Read Rolton Kilbride's response here >

17/11/2017 - Read the response from Sunderland City Council here >

SHARON WRITES TO LOCAL COUNCIL ON ROLTON KILBRIDE PLANNING APPLICATION

This week, Sharon has written a letter to Sunderland City Council regarding the proposed Rolton Kilbride Gasification plant in Washington, on behalf of constituents, to register her objection to the planning application... Read more

As Honorary President of the Washington Branch of the Royal British Legion (RBL), Sharon helps the RBL and the Durham Light Infantry (DLI) launch their poppy appeal for 2017, at Sainsbury's and ASDA at the Galleries in Washington.

Sharon joined ex-service men and women volunteer poppy sellers, who are giving up their time this month once again, to raise money and awareness, for this year’s appeal.

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Sharon helps RBL and DLI launch poppy appeal 2017

As Honorary President of the Washington Branch of the Royal British Legion (RBL), Sharon helps the RBL and the Durham Light Infantry (DLI) launch their poppy appeal for 2017, at... Read more

Sharon Hodgson MP's report - Sep-Oct 2017 number 97

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Click on the picture above to read Sharon Hodgson MP's report - News from Westminster - Sep-Oct 2017 number 97

Sharon Hodgson MPs report Sep-Oct 2017 number 97

Sharon Hodgson MP's report - Sep-Oct 2017 number 97 Click on the picture above to read Sharon Hodgson MP's report - News from Westminster - Sep-Oct 2017 number 97 Read more

After forwarding residents' concerns on to the City Council, here is the response, posted here by way of an update.  This is the latest reply as at 02/10/2017.

Click on the image below to download it.

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Update - Response from Sunderland Council on proposed Rolton Kilbride gasification plant in Washington

After forwarding residents' concerns on to the City Council, here is the response, posted here by way of an update.  This is the latest reply as at 02/10/2017. Click on... Read more

Sat 9th Sept, 2017

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Caption: Above, Sharon attends public exhibition by Coast Communications for the propsed Rolton Kilbride gasification plant at Washington.

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Caption: Above, Sharon talking to an emissions expert at the exhibition.

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Caption: Above and below, Sharon discussing the exhibition with Washington Councillors Dianne and David Snowdon.

Sharon attends Rolton Kilbride's public exhibition on the proposed gasification plant - at the Washington Leisure Centre, Sat 9th Sep 2017

Sat 9th Sept, 2017 Caption: Above, Sharon attends public exhibition by Coast Communications for the propsed Rolton Kilbride gasification plant at Washington. Caption: Above, Sharon talking to an emissions expert... Read more

As part of the First Phase of the Path to Excellence consultation, Sharon was invited to attend a meeting of the Sunderland and South Tyneside Joint Health Scrutiny Committee to give her views on the consultation and the proposed plans.

Sharon's comments from the meeting can be read below. 

If any constituent wishes to include their views in this consultation, they can visit the Path to Excellence website and fill out the survey there: https://pathtoexcellence.org.uk/take-part-survey/ 

Further details about the proposed plans can be read on the Path to Excellence website. 

PLEASE NOTE THE CONSULTATION CLOSES AT MIDNIGHT ON THE 15TH OCTOBER 2017. 

 

** CHECK AGAINST DELIVERY **

Thank you, Chair.

Thank you for inviting me to speak to your committee this afternoon.

I don’t want to speak for too long, as I know there is a packed agenda of other stakeholders to hear from.

In my contribution, I just want to raise some points about the consultation along with seeking reassurances that as many people as possible are being consulted with, especially those from disadvantaged groups.

As we know, these proposed plans come at a time when the NHS is facing serious reductions in its resources form central government with every growing demand by patients.

The work of our NHS staff is commendable and we should never stop praising them for their hard work and dedication – something I know every one of us in the room here today can agree upon.

However, I want to seek assurances from those here today that the plans being put forward will not put further strains on our already overly stretched NHS staff and guarantee that patients will not see a diminished quality or access to services?

Capacity has already been mentioned with regard to Sunderland Royal Hospital and I’m sure will be mentioned again by others. But also the Royal Victoria Infirmary and Queen Elizabeth Hospital could be effected.

We cannot escape the fact that these plans are about cuts. Cuts which are passed off as efficiencies but nevertheless, are being inflicted upon our NHS from a national position which is ideologically driven.

We know efficiencies can always be made when it comes to our public services, but the drive to make our NHS more efficient should never be done in a way that impedes on the experiences of staff and patients alike.

I’m aware some centralising of services make sense and can greatly improve the services offered so this is about taking the public, staff and patients on this journey with a full and transparent consultation, which is why we are all here today.

Service users and staff should be at the centre of every decision made. I know that my constituents want to see quality NHS services in their local area that they can access with ease by staff who are confident in the structures designed.

That is why I welcome that this consultation is happening, whilst recognising there are concerns about how it is being done. For example, am I correct in thinking that people are not allowed or encouraged just to turn up at the public hearings – but have to register first to be allowed to attend?

People should have their voices heard on these proposals, as we know that people value our NHS so dearly. The consultation events being held are important, but as we know people may not have the chance to attend these sessions and will instead take part in the survey on the Path to Excellence website.

Though, from recent information released to the public, there have only been 414 survey responses to date. Is that correct? It may be a little higher since that figure was released. Now I don’t have the population figure to hand that this consultation covers but it’s many hundreds of thousands, possibly not much short of ½ million. So that does seem a little low to me?

So I have genuine concerns that these responses will not fully reflect the thoughts of local people, and as a crucial way for people to engage with this consultation, I hope that the two remaining sessions planned will be opened up to as many people as possible to allow people with as many opportunities as possible to engage with the future of local provision.

Decisions as great as these should have the fullest engagement from local people so that services reflect what they wish and expect.

It is also important that groups who are harder to engage with, through many complex reasons, have their say including young people and older people, disabled people, BME communities and LGBT people.

Some of these groups access services on a regular basis and it is crucial that they are listened to, just as all of us should be.

I understand that support is out there for charities and organisations to provide routes in for these groups to engage with the consultation – and I would welcome an update from the committee on this and what they hope to do further to ensure everyone is listened to.

These plans will change the very nature of our local NHS services. Consultation is important so that people are not caught unaware when a service may close and they then struggle to access it.

I hope the committee can give me the reassurances that this consultation is being done in a way that everyone can have their say, and we can ensure our NHS reflects the wishes of local people. 

Sharon attends Path to Excellence Consultation Meeting

As part of the First Phase of the Path to Excellence consultation, Sharon was invited to attend a meeting of the Sunderland and South Tyneside Joint Health Scrutiny Committee to...

Information for my constituents regarding Rolton Kilbride's proposed renewable energy centre Hillthorn Park in Washington

Rolton Kilbride proposed renewable energy centre Hillthorn Park in Washington

Information for my constituents regarding Rolton Kilbride's proposed renewable energy centre Hillthorn Park in Washington Read more

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