Many MPs are invited to support good causes.
I’ve abseiled down Cheddar Gorge; been caving under the Mendips and most recently, I’ve been out collecting donations for victims of the floods in Somerset with fellow Lions Club members.
I even took part in a pancake race organised by Shelter, the homeless charity, last year alongside the BBC chief political correspondent, Nick Robinson.
Some months ago, the Bath based organisation ‘Send a Cow’ challenged me to spend a week Living Below the Line.
The challenge involves surviving on £1 a day to raise awareness of poverty in developing countries and to raise money to help pay for some of Africa’s poorest families to have livestock, training and support so they can help themselves out of poverty.
I’ll admit that by last Sunday, as I looked at the diary for my busy week ahead in London, I was just beginning to regret having accepted the challenge all those weeks ago, when March seemed such a long way off.Read more
Tessa joined 150 parents, children and cyclists, and even men on stilts in carrying coffins to echo calls to the county council to build a safe footpath on a busy Cheddar Valley road.
Supporters of the Coffin Lane Campaign piled into the Axbridge Town Square on Saturday to join the procession to Cross.
The procession went through West Street, on to Townsend carrying a banner, colourful placards and mock coffins to the Beer Garden at the New Inn, Cross.
The coffins were a reminder of the days when deceased residents of the workhouse were carried down this route to St Andrew’s Church, Compton Bishop, but also told of the current worries for those who have to walk or cycle along Cross Lane.Read more
I recently read a shocking statistic: one single hospital in France treats more patients with advanced stereotactic radiotherapy than all the hospitals in England combined.
All our European neighbours routinely use advanced stereotactic methods to deliver radiotherapy and treat cancers.
So it’s no surprise to find nearly all our neighbours have higher cancer survival rates than us. We’re languishing somewhere at the bottom of the survival league for some cancers, just above the Czech Republic and Poland.
Stereotactic radiotherapy – using machines like Gamma Knife and Cyberknife – uses high accuracy, is less toxic and results in a greater ability to control or cure cancers.Read more