Monday, 12 September 2016

Visit to record-breaking Woodlands School

With Woodlands School pupils
It was great to visit Woodlands School in Basildon and see first-hand how the school is developing.

I was pleased to find that Woodlands is going from strength-to-strength under the leadership of its Headteacher, Mr Simon Cox, and that it has seen a fantastic turn-around.

The school achieved record exam results in 2016, with 5 A*- C GCSE including English and Maths at 58%, representing a 10% increase on results from the year before.

The teachers and students that I met on my visit were all very impressive and I look forward to hearing more about the school's progress in the future.

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

A great community day for Basildon

It was great to go to the Love Your Borough event that took place in Basildon at the weekend. The event, organised by Basildon Council, celebrated the local community and brought together people from across our area, with activities that ranged from Brazilian capoeira to a spin bike challenge.

There was such a positive atmosphere throughout the day and it showed how much we have to be proud of in our local area.

In Basildon with Cllr Kevin Blake, Deputy Leader of Basildon Council
local resident Jeff Henry and Chairman of Basildon Rotary Club Danny Lovey

Catching up with Basildon Street Pastors at the Love Your Borough event

Later in the day I attended a civic reception for double Olympic champion Max Whitlock and the South Essex Gymnastics Club where he trains. It was fantastic to welcome Max back to Basildon after his amazing Olympic Games in Rio this summer.

We knew that we had an extraordinary gymnast in Max and it was brilliant to see him show that to a global audience through his historic double gymnastics gold for Team GB.

The whole team at South Essex Gymnastics Club deserve the highest praise, including Max's coach Scott Hann and the gym's leader Roy Short.

Max Whitlock speaking at the civic reception in Basildon