05 OCT 2017

News in the making...

Kent Messenger Column – 05-10-17 Last week I used this column to champion the importance of inspiring new generations to take an active interest in politics. This week an opportunity has arisen for young people in our community to do just that and I felt compelled to write about it. The Poli...


28 SEP 2017

Party Conference

Kent Messenger Column - 28-09-17 The excessive cost of attending party conferences has been a bugbear of mine for years now. I last wrote about this a couple of years ago, with particular reference to young people and how we can better securing their political engagement – with whatever part...


21 SEP 2017

New Housing Consultation

Kent Messenger Column - 21-09-17  Readers will surely be aware of the ongoing spat over Maidstone's emerging local plan, driving both local MPs to seek intervention by the Secretary of State. It was widely broadcast last week, including on the front page of this venerable publication. I echo...


14 SEP 2017

EU (Withdrawal) Bill/Myanmar

Kent Messenger Column - 14-09-17  My attentions this week are divided between home and away; Here in the UK we move toward Brexit with much progress on The European Union (Withdrawal) Bill. The Rule of Law is pervasive in modern Western life; It sets the legal parameters by which the shops in...


07 SEP 2017

Anyone for Fundraising?

Kent Messenger Column 07-09-17 The ingredients for a good fundraising event are not complicated but you sometimes need a bit of good fortune for the recipe to come together at the designated moment; a lovely venue, some good volunteers, a genuine cause, decent weather and a bit of promotional zing ...


31 AUG 2017

Heritage Lottery Fund

Kent Messenger Column - 31-08-17  The haunting vision of deep red porcelain poppies cascading down the cold grey walls of the Tower of London was one of the most poignant moments of my time as a culture Minister in the Cameron government. I was responsible for the World War One Centennial com...


24 AUG 2017

Fairer energy prices

Kent Messenger Column - 24-08-17 Hands up if you are this person; The last time you moved house you adopted the gas and electricity supplier already in place there, haven't changed since, and your supplier is one or more of the big six (British Gas, EDF, E.ON, N-power, SSE or Scottish Power)? The ...


17 AUG 2017

National Citizens Service

Kent Messenger Column - 17-08-17 Dragons' Den panellists conjure a vision of beasts of business inflicting savage critiques upon aspiring entrepreneurs. Exhaling fire isn't my thing really but this was not the BBC show either. I was invited to attend the Dragons' Den phase of the National Citiz...


10 AUG 2017

Sponsorship in women's sport

Kent Messenger Column - 10-08-17  I welcomed the recent focus on the BBC's gender pay gap, but the issue spreads much more widely than on-screen media talent; a current case-in-point being sport. This summer has thus far witnessed an unprecedented level of English success in international wom...


03 AUG 2017

Cancer Statistics

Kent Messenger Column 03-08-17 Around this time last year I learned that my husband had prostate cancer. As you might expect it had a marked effect upon my whole family; it also realigned my own 'life priorities' significantly, and permanently. When Cancer Research UK released their cancer statist...


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Helen's column

05 OCT 2017

News in the making...

Kent Messenger Column – 05-10-17 Last week I used this column to champion the importance of inspiring new generations to take an active interest in politics. This week an opportunity has arisen for...


28 SEP 2017

Party Conference

Kent Messenger Column - 28-09-17 The excessive cost of attending party conferences has been a bugbear of mine for years now. I last wrote about this a couple of years ago, with particular reference...


21 SEP 2017

New Housing Consultation

Kent Messenger Column - 21-09-17  Readers will surely be aware of the ongoing spat over Maidstone's emerging local plan, driving both local MPs to seek intervention by the Secretary of State. It...