Robert's Weekly Column - 9th November 2018

This coming Sunday, 11th November 2018, marks the commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the signing of Armistice.  The day will recognise the significance of the end of the First World War, and the sacrifice made by so many men and women during this period.

When the ten blasts of the Swindon Works hooter blew out on August 4th, 1914 it signalled, without question, four years that changed our town forever.

It was a period of extreme hardship and suffering that affected Swindon in so many ways — not least in the ultimate sacrifice made by hundreds of Swindon’s brave souls who gallantly joined in the fight, never to return again.  A total of 5,383 men from Swindon fought in the war and 920 of them were killed. 

On Saturday, I will be joining members of the local community and members of the Armed Forces past and present at the unveiling of a World War 1 Memorial at the GWR Park.

South Swindon Parish Council has commissioned the £10,000 sculpture, which has been made by local artist and heritage campaigner, Mike Pringle. The sculpture, made from five steel panels, will feature cut-out designs of a war horse’s head, Lee Enfield rifle, gun carriage wheel and the red cross of the Swindon Royal Army Medical Corps. The unveiling will take place at 3pm opposite the new benches in Faringdon Road Park and I hope to see you there.

On Sunday, I will be joining the local community and laying a wreath at the Swindon Cenotaph in Regent Circus as we pay tribute to those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country. Following this, I will be at the memorial service at Radnor Street Chapel at 2pm.

Our armed services are a deeply ingrained part of Swindon’s history, and I am extremely proud to represent a constituency that rightly holds our military in the highest regard.

Swindon's reputation for performing arts is a considerable one, and dance is a vital part of this.  I went recently to a thoroughly enjoyable Tap Attack 10 Year Anniversary Gala Performance at the Wyvern Theatre.

Celebrating ten years of Tap Attack, the Gala brought together current and past dancers and presented some of Tap Attack’s most iconic dances.

Tap Attack train Team GB here in Swindon and have around 250 dancers nationwide. The performance company was formed in 2008, and has won 29 World Titles at the IDO World Tap Championships, becoming semi-finalists in series two of Sky1’s Got to Dance.  Last year, Team GB were the most successful team at the World Championships.

Tap Attack are keen to participate in local outreach programmes and initiatives here in Swindon and I am supporting this.  If you would like further information, please get in touch with me by emailing Robert.buckland.mp@parliament.uk

Finally, it was good to meet residents and discuss a variety of both local and national issues at my busy street surgery in Liden last Saturday. I hold frequent advice surgeries in South Swindon and I am regularly contacted by fellow residents.  My team and I are always happy to help wherever we can.

You can contact me via email, telephone, or by writing a letter to my constituency office in Wood Street. Full details can be found on my website https://www.robertbuckland.co.uk/contact