Here we are, seven days after polling day and first and foremost I wanted to say a huge thank you for everyone who turned out to support me last week and throughout the General Election campaign. Another special thanks also has to go to those people who put up with the undoubtedly tiresome and intense political campaigning over the last 6 weeks, as well as all of those who turned out to vote, regardless of voting preference. Democracy is an amazing yet precious thing and we need to respect it.
Over the last 6 weeks, I have tried to reach out more than ever to engage with constituents from all over Plymouth Moor View to speak to people and learn about their concerns and their aspirations. I have had a great team around me for this time and I hope you feel like you have had the opportunity to speak to engage with me. Hopefully, you will have seen me either out on the street, at a public meeting, at a hustings event or even on one of my Facebook Live Q&As which I ran during the campaign. Undoubtedly, with new technology, it is easier than ever to communicate widely with constituents and the Facebook Lives were incredibly successful. However, I’m not sure there will ever be a substitute for those face to face doorstep conversations.
In May 2015, I was first elected with 37.6% of the popular vote, which equated to 16,020 votes. Just over two years later, only seven days ago, I won 51.9% of the vote, which was 23,567 votes in total. I’m not sure I can put into words how proud that has made me and the desire it gives to go out and deliver for our city.
Across Plymouth Moor View’s seven wards, Budshead, Eggbuckland, Ham, Honicknowle, Moor View, Southway & St Budeaux, a majority in each ward voted to return me to Parliament as your representative and I will be forever grateful. Since 2015, I have been driven to be the best representative that I could be for the city and I return now to redouble those efforts.
Plymouth is a city that has for years had its potential untapped. I believe that is changing. Unemployment is falling, investment is coming to the city and businesses are going from strength to strength. I want to support the private sector in their goals to aid job creation and wage growth, but I will also continue my fight to have our public health funding settlement reviewed, to ensure Plymouth Moor View’s schools achieve a fairer and better funding settlement and to work with the Council and the Clinical Commissioning Group to ensure Plymouth’s funding is improved within the CCG area.
I will finish how I started, with another thank you. I know that the hard work now begins again in earnest and I will be out there fighting for our city. We have interesting times ahead, but it will also bring opportunity for our city. Opportunity that we will be there to take, together.