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News From Westminster- By Michelle Donelan MP Help at Lunch Club

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The other week I volunteered at Melksham  Lunch Club, run as a charity, that has taken over the service from Wiltshire Council. 

It was wonderful to help Sue Mortimer and others. I was impressed by the number of people there, including so many who came on their own to meet new people. Loneliness is such a problem today and not-for-profits like this provide an invaluable service, bringing people together over a hot meal which is affordable. The volunteers beamed with smiles and spent time with me, sharing their love for the service and the value it provides.

After the lunch service I held an open surgery in Melksham’s Sainsbury’s. Unsurprisingly there was a lot of talk about Brexit but local topics came up too, including the strain on local doctors’ surgeries and the waiting times for appointments. This is something I have approached surgeries on before and I am glad that St Damian’s will remain open because the CCG have agreed that the closure would make the problem worse. I shall continue to work on the issue of GP shortages, both at a local and national level – please email michelle.donelan.mp@       parliament.uk for an update on my work in this area.

The other week I joined the Wiltshire Bobby Van on a ride out to see some of their work for myself. I accompanied Will Todd, one of the charities security operators. The Wiltshire Bobby Van service is one of the last left in the country and is a charity that provides a home security service for the elderly and vulnerable in Wiltshire. It costs £240,000 a year to run three vans across Wiltshire.

I was so impressed to see the work of the Bobby Van and just how much impact they have on local residents, giving them not only more security, but also more peace of mind to feel safe in their own homes. I would urge anyone who feels they or their loved ones could benefit from the service to book an appointment.

If you would like an appointment to discuss a problem, local or national, then please call 01249 704 465 or write to 61 New Rd, Chippenham, Wiltshire. SN15 1ED.

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