Monday, 19 March 2018

Stay safe on the roads

The weekend saw the return of the wintry weather, and in such conditions it is important to remind ourselves of Northumbria Police’s advice on driving in snowy and icy conditions. The Northumbria Police and Highways Agency websites will always have updates on road conditions, but make sure to follow the following advice when driving in the coming days-

  • Dress appropriately for the weather, especially if out on foot, but also in your car
  • Moderate your speed to match the conditions but try not to brake sharply
  • Maintain a safe distance from the vehicle in front- stopping distances are longer on wet or icy roads
  • Ensure you have adequate visibility by clearing front and back windscreens and all windows/wing mirrors before setting off
  • Keep your windscreen washer bottle topped up, preferably with the addition of winter screen wash
  • Clean your headlights front and rear and use dipped headlights when driving in poor visibility, including heavy rain as well as snow
  • Be alert for pedestrians walking on roads when footpaths are too snowy or icy to use
  • An ice scraper and de-icer should be carried for day to day use, whilst other useful items in your car in adverse weather conditions include: a torch, warm clothes or a blanket, boots, a first aid kit, a shovel, a battery, jump leads and a tow rope
  • Food and a warm drink should be taken on longer journeys
  • Advise a friend, colleague or family member of your journey
  • Ensure mobile phones are fully charged before travelling

Sunday, 18 March 2018

Success keeps on coming for our local pubs and restaurants

Just weeks after the success of chef Kevin MacLean of The Rat Inn at the Parliamentary Pub Chef of the Year competition, The Valley in Corbridge has reached the final of the Tiffin Cup 2018. The Valley has been chosen to represent Hexham as one of twelve national finalists in the competition, which is held every year to find the best South Asian restaurant in the country. The Tiffin Cup winner is chosen from a list of restaurants that have been nominated by their local MPs, and I am delighted to see my nominated restaurant recognised as one of the best. The final will be held in the House of Commons on 27th March, and I am sure that everyone in Hexham will be rooting for The Valley to be crowned the 2018 champion.

Saturday, 17 March 2018

Northumberland is UK's best National Park- but we knew that already!

Northumberland has been named National Park of the Year at the BBC Countryfile Magazine Awards 2018. Nearly 180,000 votes were cast by 30,000 people- the biggest response in the competition’s history- and Northumberland National Park came out as the winner in the main category, repeating its success in the 2016 awards. According to the Countryfile judges, Northumberland was the hands down winner in the category, describing it as ‘very empty, with big skies and landscapes and superb wildlife', none of which is news to those of us lucky enough to live in Northumberland. 

Winning National Park of the Year is an incredible achievement and highlights how lucky we are to have such a beautiful National Park in our region. Congratulations to all the staff, members and volunteers at Northumberland National Park who make it a very special place that everyone can enjoy.