A Week in Parliament

End of Recess

Recess has ended and this means the return to Westminster. Of course being Westminster, Parliament sits for just seven days before breaking up for “conference recess” which is then a three week break to allow one week for each of the UK wide parties to have their party conferences. It is a crazy system, and amongst it all, you have to question Parliament not sitting for a week to allow the Liberal Democrats, with just 12 MPs to have a national conference.

It’s funny how the world does continue when parliament doesn’t sit, which probably doesn’t reflect well on parliamentarians! However, parliament can be recalled if there is a subject serious enough to merit it. Meanwhile, in Northern Ireland, the Assembly has now broken a world record for the longest period of not sitting/functioning. It beggars belief it has not sat for circa 600 days. The UK Government really needs to do something to break the deadlock. Of course when they are propped up at Westminster by the DUP, then they are not exactly seen as a neutral participant in any talks. Just another sideshow of the grubby DUP deal.


I was pleased but apprehensive to do my first ever podcast interview with Ross Manson for KillieCast. Ross and Andy Kerr do fortnightly community podcasts, giving a round-up of what is going on in and around Killie. Even if you don’t want to hear my interview, they are well worth following/listening to. They are casual, light-hearted, but full of useful information. It is really great to see too young guys who care so much about the town and the community that they want to showcase this. You can subscribe to the podcast FREE on SoundCloud (http://bit.ly/killiecast) and iTunes (http://bit.ly/kcitunes). 


Andy from KillieCast also highlighted that he is in Pylon, which is playing in Glasgow on September 15th. For those who don’t know, it is a show, with musical accompaniment all about living in Shortlees, the concerns of locals about possible increased cancer risk due to the electricity pylons that one time weaved their way right through Shortlees. When I saw it at the Palace Theatre, it blew me away. There is a real mix of humour, and sadness associated with real life. If you haven’t seen it yet, I recommend going to Glasgow to see it, and if you have already seen it, you will know it is well worth another viewing. I wish all the best to all taking part. It has been a fantastic effort to get to this stage.

Jeremy Corbyn Tour

As part of his summer, Jeremy Corbyn did a quick tour of Scotland. He visited a number of constituencies where Labour believe they have a chance to beat the SNP at the next election. Nothing wrong with that – we all aim to win as many seats as possible. Yet, if Jeremy Corbyn really aspires to be a Prime Minister, then it is Tory seats they need to win. How many Tory seats were visited this time or even the last time he did such a tour? None! Surely Tory seats should also be targeted and that as a platform for calling out the UK Government policies we agree are harmful?

These thoughts were first published in the Kilmarnock Standard.