Read High Peak MP Robert Largan's final column of 2021 ahead of Christmas.
Firstly, I would like to wish everyone across the High Peak a very happy, healthy Christmas!
As with previous years, this year I ran a competition to design my Christmas e-card and I have donated what I would have spent on Christmas cards to the fantastic Buxton-based charity, the Thomas Theyer Foundation. In sending out the e-card, I want to reflect the best of the High Peak and showcase the creativity of our children.
The standard of entries this year was incredibly high and picking just one winner was certainly a difficult choice.
That said, I would like to congratulate Sophia Isabelle Lee (aged 7) from Chinley Primary School as this year's deserved winner.
Like last year, I have also run my Best Decorated Street Competition. Ahead of announcing this year’s winner, I visited Parkway in New Mills – the winner of last year’s competition.
It’s great to see the community come together in this way. The lights look great again, and the street pulled together to raise funds for the brilliant Blythe House Hospice. The residents of Parkway should be very proud!
I am currently visiting this year’s nominated streets and will be announcing the winner shortly.
Speaking of Christmas cheer, last Friday I volunteered as a helper elf for Father Christmas visiting local residents to help raise money for Glossop Mountain Rescue Team. We were even joined by Anna and Elsa from Frozen. After three hours out in the cold, I was feeling a little frozen myself but it was great fun spreading some festive cheer and raising money for such a good cause.
I know that Christmas can be a tough time financially for some families, particularly so with the pandemic.
I’m pleased to report, therefore, that Derbyshire County Council has created a Household Support Fund to help struggling households this winter.
The £5.4 million fund is in addition to the existing support schemes, and provides payments worth £64 per household, plus an additional £20 for every adult or child. This means that a couple with two children, for example, could receive a payment worth up to £124.
For further information and to apply, please call 01629 533399.
A separate voucher to help with the cost of living will also be available in the New Year.
Finally, I would like to urge everyone to get their booster jab. The evidence is clear, vaccines are the only proven way to defeat this virus. I got my booster jab last week at the Fairfield Centre in Buxton. It was very efficient and I was in and out in just five minutes! Thank you to everyone who is working so hard to deliver the booster programme.
That’s it from me for this year. I hope you have a very happy Christmas and here’s to a brighter 2022!