Tory Party Chairman in Peterborough to support local MP and activists
Ms Milling, who has been the MP for Cannock Chase since 2015, only took up the office of party chairman on 23 February, serving as co-chairman (alongside Ben Elliot), and as Minister without Portfolio.
Meeting at the Crab and Winkle public house in Werrington, Ms Milling said: “I’m currently on a tour of England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland specifically to visit the seats that we won in the General Election last year.
“As Conservative Party Chairman, I want to support my new colleagues such as Paul Bristow MP and to visit with local businesses, voluntary groups, members of the public and high street shops in their constituencies where I can really find out what it has been like on the ground during lockdown.
“I also want to hear first-hand how people are feeling and coping now that lockdown is being eased.
“When I got appointed back in February, I couldn’t possibly have imagined that just six weeks later this entire country would be in lockdown and in a crisis of unprecedented proportions.
“My plan originally was to be zooming around the country, whereas in fact I ended up on ‘zoom’ talking to everybody from the other side of a computer screen. “Yes, this has been an unprecedented situation, one that has made it much more difficult to get out and about in the country.
“But that makes me all the more pleased to be here today in Peterborough to be able to lend my support to Paul Bristow and our local party activists”.
Accompanying Ms Milling was MPt for Peterborough, Paul Bristow who was elected in December 2019.
Mr Bristow added: “I’m incredibly proud of Peterborough, and I keep on saying that over and over again because it is true.
“Today is a great opportunity for me to showcase Peterborough to the party chairman, demonstrating to somebody who sits in cabinet some of the wonderful businesses and special people in this city.
“I was elected on a ‘levelling-up’ agenda. I know that people point to the north and to the midlands when they talk about ‘levelling-up’; but my job is to show that Peterborough has not simply been basking in the sun.
“There are genuine, specific and unique reasons why the government’s ‘levelling-up’ money should be spent here, which is why Peterborough has been the recipient of just about the biggest individual grant from the Building for Growth fund.
“We’ve received over £16m for the University of Peterborough project and the Research Super-Hub that are going to be built here over the next few years, and I’m enormously proud of how that has gone so far.
“I have championed the education issues that Peterborough has, and certainly the new university will alleviate some of them; but today’s show of support from the party chairman will go a long way towards recovery in sectors other than education such as local business and community.
“This city has some really exciting plans for the future, which is why we have the £25m new towns fund that we are looking to use to regenerate the city centre.
“We’re only 45 minutes from London, and we are on the A1 the main artery going north and south.
“We have a fantastic history of manufacturing and engineering – and the best thing going for us are the amazing people of Peterborough.
“So, I want the government to listen loud and clear to our regeneration plans so that we can get more of that ‘levelling-up’ funding, and more support from government to make sure our regeneration plans come to fruition”.
Ms Milling said: “Peterborough is a very diverse city, and it has its own set of unique challenges.
“It’s part of my job to go around and re-assure people that the Conservative Party and central government are here to support them facing those challenges in the future.
“This is indeed about ‘levelling-up’ the country, and I feel that means ‘levelling-up’ across all of our communities as well.
“That’s not just a ‘north-south’ levelling either, it’s about doing so in towns and cities across the entire country.
“Therefore, one of the most important things for the party and for government to understand is what the specific needs are from local businesses and people.
“Part of my task when I’m out and about is to gather that information, and relay it back to the Prime Minister and to his Cabinet.”