I hope you all had a chance to get some sun over a lovely Bank Holiday weekend. It was fantastic to see everyone safely out and about on our high streets, supporting our shops and having a drink or two in the local beer gardens. Weather like this gives us all even more reason to get out to support local businesses and attractions!
As part of National Tourism Week, it was great to take a trip to the stunning Bolney Wine Estate, a thriving local vineyard nestled in Mid Sussex. This vineyard has gone from strength to strength since 1972 and it’s wonderful to see our own Sussex countryside producing brilliant, award-winning wines thanks to expert knowledge, commitment to quality and careful land management.
I also met with Dominic Moore, Chairman of Friends of Burgess Hill Green Circle Network, who took me on a wonderful tour of the extended Bedelands Local Nature Reserve, which covers 33 hectares and is the largest green site in Burgess Hill, hosting a diverse range of bugs, birds, bats, amphibians and mammals. I enjoyed discussing the various projects with Cllr Sam Smith the Bedelands volunteers are involved in, including organising conservation work parties, free walks, pond dipping, bug hunts for local kids. Particularly with the weather as it is, I’d absolutely recommend everyone visit for a lovely walk or scenic picnic lunch.
I was also pleased to chat again to Jane and Oliver Plumb from Haywards Heath based charity Group B Strep Support, ahead of the Group B Strep in Pregnancy and Babies annual Conference, which this will be opened by Health Minister Nadine Dorries MP. Group B Strep is the most common cause of life-threatening infection in new-born babies in the UK, with two babies a day developing the GBS Infection. Nadine has also been a great supporter of nationwide testing for this infection, while the trial for pregnancy screenings of strep B have crucially been given the green light by her. Please ladies do also get involved and have your say on the new women’s health strategy - it’s crucial you join the conversation & influence the new Department for Women's Health Strategy consultation, before the new 13th June deadline: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/womens-health-strategy-call-for-evidence?utm_campaign=talk-womens-health&utm_medium=o&utm_source=tw&utm_content=fact
Finally, on Tuesday, I joined the team at Borde Hill to see the brilliant new projects which are able to go ahead since they were awarded key funding from the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund Grant. Borde Hill has previously supported many local groups and enjoyed hearing about their future plans to be even more inclusive and accessible, working ever closer with more vulnerable groups in our community, boosting wellbeing, exercise and supporting good mental health.