Evennett calls for more action on Social Mobility

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© Parliamentary Recording Unit

Yesterday afternoon (14 January), Rt Hon Sir David Evennett, MP for Bexleyheath and Crayford, participated in the debate on the Queen’s Speech to raise the issue of the underachievement of white working-class boys.

Sir David welcomed the contents of the Queen’s Speech, expressed his strong support for it and also highlighted the Government’s many achievements on education, including improving standards in schools across the country since 2010 and record levels of funding. However, he used his speech to express his concerns about the educational attainment of white working-class boys, and commented:

“I want briefly to highlight the fact that every child deserves the best start in life regardless of their background or where they live. Access to good schools is essential to build the foundations for success in future life. I am concerned about the underachievement of many working-class boys; this topic has not received enough attention in the past. This particular demographic is falling ever further behind and it shows no sign of catching up with its peers. The difference in attainment between richer pupils and their disadvantaged classmates has closed since 2011, but when results are broken down by ethnicity, it appears that the improved results among poorer pupils are largely down to the achievement of non-white children; this is exacerbated when gender is taken into account.

“I welcome the fact that girls are achieving so much more now. In my constituency, we have a very good secondary school, Townley Grammar, which is excellent and is offering girls tremendous opportunities, but the boys—the working-class heroes we should have in the future—are not achieving and the Government must look into that.”

Local Conservatives Celebrate General Election Victory

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Bexleyheath and Crayford Conservatives held a dinner at the Bexleyheath Conservative Club on Friday evening (10 January) hosted by their MP, Rt Hon Sir David Evennett and his wife Marilyn to celebrate the Conservatives’ General Election victory.

After the two course meal organised by Association Officer Maureen King, Sir David gave a short speech thanking his campaign team, Party activists, his Agent Perry Taylor and his wife Marilyn for their support and hard work during the election campaign. He praised the Prime Minister, Rt Hon Boris Johnson MP, for his Leadership, dynamism and enthusiasm, as well as his determination to get Brexit done and then implement a positive legislative agenda. He also highlighted the improved atmosphere in the House of Commons now  with a new Speaker, a majority Conservative government and an exciting government programme.

Association Chairman, Cllr Howard Jackson, gave the vote of thanks to Sir David, a bouquet of flowers to Lady Marilyn and a gift of beer to Election Agent Perry Taylor. President Mark Brooks drew the raffle and guests concluded the evening with a special cake made by Cllr Sue Gower MBE.

New Year offers real opportunity for Britain

19-0426-5337As we enter a new year and a new decade with a new government there are huge opportunities for our country. We need to be positive and optimistic and ensure that our One Nation Conservative Government works for the whole country. We have to give people confidence that their views are being heeded and their aspirations addressed, as well as restoring pride in our country.

Of course we must heal the divisions within our society, listen to the people (who have spoken decisively in the General Election) and deliver a decade of opportunity and growing prosperity for our nation. We have a mandate from the electorate to get Brexit done and to work hard to implement our manifesto commitments on the major issues including the NHS, education, the economy, law and order, immigration, housing, the environment, and transport.

I believe that in our Prime Minister we have a Leader who understands and is determined to accomplish the necessary changes and reforms domestically and improve the quality of life for all of our citizens. In addition, our Conservative government will work to make Britain a formidable leader economically, politically and environmentally on the world stage.

Happy New Year!

Evennett urges Opposition Leader to support Brexit Bill

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Rt Hon Sir David Evennett, MP for Bexleyheath and Crayford, intervened on the Leader of the Opposition’s Speech earlier today (20 December) on the EU Withdrawal Agreement Bill to urge him to vote with the Government.

Sir David commented: “the people have voted in the General Election and supported the Prime Minister’s deal. As a democrat, surely he should heed the people”.

Statement on situation at St Catherine’s Catholic School for Girls

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Naturally I am very concerned at the ongoing situation at St Catherine’s Catholic School and that apparently due to strike action the girls are not receiving the education they deserve.

I have been attempting to get a meeting at the school with either of the acting co-headteachers or the acting Chair of Governors to discuss the issues and their plans to resolve the situation. This has now been arranged for Monday 6 January.

I have also been in touch with our Regional Schools Commissioner, representatives from La Sainte Union, the Education Commission for the Archdiocese of Southwark, the Leader of Bexley Council (Cllr Teresa O’Neill OBE), and the Secretary of State for Education (Rt Hon Gavin Williamson MP), to see what assistance they may be able to give to help bring this to a conclusion.

I will continue to pursue this matter vigorously.

Evennett welcomes new Queen’s Speech

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Earlier today (19 December) the new Conservative Government’s legislative agenda was set out in the Queen’s Speech. Rt Hon Sir David Evennett, MP for Bexleyheath and Crayford has warmly welcomed the measures, commenting: “now the General Election is over, this majority Conservative Government can get on with Brexit and the people’s policy priorities. This Queen’s Speech is constructive, comprehensive and will gain favour across the UK. It lays out an ambitious programme that my constituents and the country voted for”.

This Queen’s Speech will deliver Brexit on 31 January and allow the Government to deliver on people’s priorities and unleash the country’s potential. Among other measures, the Government set out its plans to:

  • Enshrine the increased NHS budget of an extra £33.9bn into law
  • Make it easier for more qualified doctors and nurses to work in our NHS
  • Abolish hospital car parking charges for those who need it the most
  • Deliver on plans for 50,000 more nurses, 50 million more GP appointments, 40 new hospitals and 20 hospital upgrades
  • Increase levels of funding per pupil in every school, to ensure every child receives the best possible education – wherever they grow up
  • Tackle violent crime and make our streets safer with new legislation to ensure terrorists spend longer behind bars and make it easier for the police to stop and search known knife carriers
  • Invest in transformational infrastructure

Home Secretary Guests at Tory Dinner

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Rt Hon Priti Patel, the Home Secretary, was the guest speaker at the Erith and Thamesmead Conservative Association (ETCA) dinner held on Thursday evening (28 November) at the Danson Boathouse.

Among the guests at the sold out event were Conservative Candidates at the General Election, Rt Hon Sir David Evennett (Bexleyheath and Crayford), Joe Robertson (Erith and Thamesmead), Cllr Gareth Bacon AM (Orpington), and Bexley Council Leader, Cllr Teresa O’Neill OBE. Cllr John Davey, Chairman of ETCA presided over the event.

New Priest for Slade Green

Rt Hon Sir David Evennett, MP for Bexleyheath and Crayford, and his wife Marilyn were pleased to join guests at the Licensing and Installation of Rev Jim Bennett at St Augustine Church in Slade Green on Sunday afternoon (6 October). The service also included a number of hymns and readings.

After Rev Bennett was licensed by the Rt Rev Simon Burton-Jones, Bishop of Tonbridge, he was then installed by the Ven Dr Paul Wright, Archdeacon of Bromley and Bexley as the new Priest in charge.

After the ceremony, Sir David and Marilyn joined other guests, including the Mayor of Bexley, Cllr Geraldene Lucia-Hennis, in the church hall for refreshments and a buffet. Sir David welcomed Rev Bennett on behalf of the community and expressed how he looked forward to working together for the benefit of the people in the parish.

Pictured left to right: Lady Evennett, Ven Dr Paul Wright, Cllr Geraldene Lucia-Hennis, Rt Rev Simon Burton-Jones, Rev Jim Bennett, Rt Hon Sir David Evennett MP, Peter Lucia-Hennis.

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Friends Hold AGM

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The Friends of St Paulinus Church held their Annual General Meeting on Saturday afternoon (5 October) in the church hall in Crayford. Members were joined by Rt Hon Sir David Evennett MP, Bexley Mayor Cllr Geraldine Lucia-Hennis, and Crayford Councillor Christine Bishop.

Chairman Dorothy Pennington-Jones ran the proceedings and reported on another successful year for the Friends with fundraising and social events, and highlighted the popularity of the annual Quiz Night. Treasurer John Holbrook presented the audited accounts and spoke about the projects the Friends had funded to help preserve the historic and ancient church building.

After the formal proceedings had been concluded members and guests enjoyed tea and homemade cakes.

Officers elected for 2019/20 were:

Chairman: Dorothy Pennington-Jones

Vice Chairman and Secretary: Alan Baxter

Treasurer: John Holbrook

Membership Secretary: Margaret Drew

Pictured are the Officers, Committee members and guests.