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Alex Norris MP's Weekly Newsletter

Member of Parliament for Nottingham North
17th August 2018
Issue #58

Welcome to the latest issue of my weekly newsletter.  

As I’ve already mentioned, over the Summer I’m running a priorities survey to give you the chance to tell me what matters most to you. This gives you the opportunity to tell me where you think I should be putting my time and effort, and what issues specifically of those I've been focusing on are most important to you.   

You can then complete the survey by clicking the following link. I look forward to receiving all your good ideas. 

Of course, if you have other areas you'd like me to work on, you can always email me at  

This week though, I’ll be refreshing you on some of the work that Rebalancing the Outer Estates charity has already done since I became Chair in June, and what we have planned. The survey above has an opportunity for you to give me your views on this, so please do fill it in if you haven’t already. 

Also, it was A Level Results day yesterday, and we have GCSEs next week, so there’s an important message and some helpful information further down about that too. I wish everyone the best of luck! 

As I’ve said before, I will strive to send you a newsletter like this each Friday to keep you updated on the work I’m doing in Parliament as well as in our community, and to inform you of any interesting events taking place in our area. To help me with the latter, if you are running or know of anything that you think may be of interest to others, feel free to drop me an email at and I will include it in future issues. Please also forward it onto anyone you think may be interested.  

What is Rebalancing?

I’ve regularly spoke about the work that Rebalancing does, as and when we do it, but I’m not sure that I’ve ever used this newsletter to really explain what Rebalancing is and where it came from. 

Rebalancing the Outer Estates Foundation, or Rebalancing for short, is a small charity based in Bulwell, which was established in July 2014 by my predecessor as MP for Nottingham North, Graham Allen. It achieved charitable status in 2015, and with the support of various partners, a small team of staff has been established, with the goal of improving Nottingham North and the lives of the people who live here. 
The work that we do focusses on four main areas:  

  • Health and Wellbeing 
  • Employment 
  • Skills and Enterprise  
  • Arts and Creativity  

We work in each of these areas through partnership with a range of organisations to enable and support positive change. At the heart of our approach is a commitment to facilitate networks and build strong and healthy communities. 

We are a unique organisation - innovative in our approach to making a real and lasting difference to the communities we serve, and we hope to demonstrate that things can get done when we work together. 


What We've Done So Far

Since I was elected in June 2016, and became chair of the Rebalancing board, we’ve managed to achieve an awful lot locally that I’m really proud of. The way we do this is by working with other groups, whose work I’m incredibly grateful for, and together we’ve been able to make Nottingham North a better place. Here’s some of what we’ve done in the last year: 

  • The Jobs Fair, which about 1000 people attended and put 70 people into work. In a community like ours, this can make much more of a difference to someone than any individual law, which is why I’m so proud of the difference that we have made.  Going from unemployment into a job can change your life, and I hope that’s what has happened for those who found work, and what will happen to even more people at next year’s. 
  • Lung MOTs, which we continued to give in Bulwell, and led to the early diagnosis of lung cancer for some of our neighbours as well as a range of other conditions. Public Health England have also now launched a campaign to raise awareness of lung cancer locally, and hopefully we can save more lives this way. 
  • Supporting the volunteer-led Arts Festivals in Bulwell and Bilborough and Riverside Exhibitions which have showcased and promoted all the gifted artists we have locally. Workshops and links with schools and other groups hopefully mean that more people are inspired to create art themselves. 
  • Teeth Team continued to operate in 9 local primary schools – giving free brushings, education and more to children. Tooth decay leads to hospital visits for children more than anything else, and bad dental hygiene is indicative of other difficulties down the road, so this can make a bigger difference than you’d think. 
  • Lots of community arts and culture, such as Three Doors Down – a community theatre project in Aspley based on community memories - and The Aspley Sewing Workshop. 
  • Supporting local children of all ages with Roots of Empathy which works with young children and parents alike to learn to foster the development of empathy and create a more caring peaceful society, and with ThinkForward, which have skills coaches in 4 of our Secondary Schools to help teenagers have the right skills to find employment.  

Looking Forwards

We’re not done there though. A lot of what we did this year – the jobs fair, the arts festivals, lung scans, teeth team - we’ll of course be continuing or coming back again, and some of this will hopefully be expanding too, but there’s also many more ideas being talked about and planned at various stages. Here’s an idea of some of what we’ve been discussing: 
  • We will be partnering with the National Literacy Trust to provide additional support to them locally. Their ‘Early Words Together at Two’ programme, which helps families to improve their home learning environment and support their child’s language and communication, will be kicking off in 12 early years settings in Aspley, Bulwell, St Ann’s and Arboretum in September, and their ‘Words For Work’ programme, has worked with law firm Browne Jacobson in welcoming students from Nottingham Academy and Bulwell Academy to demonstrate how both skills in oral and written communication are essential to success in the workplace. I’m looking forward to having more of these programme’s available to our local children and helping to change their trajectories. 
  • The Bulwell Health and Wellbeing Group has recently launched, so is now in the early stages of finding ways to improve the Health and Wellbeing of local people, both individually and collectively. We’re currently generating ideas and priorities but expect to hear more from this over the next year. 
  • One aspect of the Health and Wellbeing Group that is already moving, is the creation of a steering group to work how we can enhance the Social Prescribing system locally. Social prescribing, sometimes referred to as community referral, is a means of enabling GPs, nurses and other primary care professionals to refer people to a range of local, non-clinical services. Recognising that people’s health is determined primarily by a range of social, economic and environmental factors, social prescribing seeks to address people’s needs in a holistic way. We feel this can make a huge difference to people locally, especially as everyday services have been forced to close by cuts. 
There will of course be plenty more that we aren’t aware of yet or is too early to talk about – I’ll keep you updated as it happens. 

Results Days

Yesterday was A-Level results day and this coming Thursday is GCSE results day, so I’d just like to say good luck and congratulations to everyone locally who has or will be receiving their results. I know everyone will be very nervous after having worked hard to get the results they want, so if you’ve done well you should be very proud and enjoy the celebrations. 

But if you haven’t done quite as well as you’d hoped, it certainly isn’t the end of the world, and there are plenty of opportunities for you to continue along the path you want. It is important though that you act quickly (if you haven’t already), by seeking out assistance and contacting any organisations you’d like to attend, or looking into other avenues that could suit your journey. 

If you need any extra help with this, please do contact my office ( or 0115 975 2377) and my team will be able to help you. Otherwise, there’s a list of useful numbers below. Congratulations once again and good luck!

What's On

I want these emails to be as interesting as possible. That means there’ll be some politics – it’s important that I am held accountable. But I also want to offer information about what’s on locally. So, if you have an event you’d like me to advertise, let me know.

If you would like your events advertised here, or further information on those advertised, please email me at

That’s all for now! Details of how to get in touch or to have a look at the things I’m doing are below…

All the best,


New Wellbeing/Self-Help Group
An opportunity to meet new people, make new friends, and help you build up confidence and self-esteem.
Identify areas of your own wellbeing - physically & mentally.
Referral support to other services & support.
Friendly & comfortable environment, with no pressure to talk.
Hosted in the West Room, St Mary’s the Virgin & All Souls Church, Highbury Road, Bulwell, NG6 9AD.
The first meeting is on Monday 10th September 2018, 10:30am - 12pm
For further info:

WAIS Paws in the Park
Bring your pooch for a 5km sponsored dog walk and help raise funds for our pet fostering project which helps pets and families to find safety from domestic abuse
Rushcliffe Country Park, Ruddington
Sunday, 23rd September, 11:30-16:30
For more info click here.

Poems in the Pub
Open Mic Night, Free Admission, Local Talent, Full Bar
The William Peverel, Bulwell
First Thursday in the month, 7:30pm start.
Next one October 4th

Drop in Café
All welcome for a free cuppa and biscuit, and a place to sit and have a chat
Our Lady of Perpetual Succour Parish Community Centre, Brooklyn Rd, Bulwell NG6 9ES
Thursdays, 9:30am–12:30pm

Messy Church
Drinks, crafts, activities, bible stories and a meal for all ages and interests
Bulwell United Reformed Church, Broomhill Road/Brooklyn Road, Bulwell
Usually first Saturday of every month, 10:30am-12:30pm

Bestwood Park Church’s Bestop Kitchen
Social Eating Event, Donations Welcome
Bestwood Park Church, Beckhampton Road, NG5 5NG
Every Tuesday, 12-2pm

Whiz Kids Junior Church
Free breakfast, arts & crafts for children aged 5ish – 11ish
St Mary the Virgin & All Souls Parish Church, Highbury Road, Bulwell
Every Sunday, 9:30am

Crafty Ladies
Bring along a project, or learn to do something new.
St Martins Church, St Martin’s Rd, Off Strelley Rd, Bilborough, NG8 3BH
Every Wednesday, 11am – 2pm
50p, for further info:,


Cream Tea for Bulwell Royal British Legion
Enjoy an afternoon cream tea consisting of sandwiches, cakes and scones to support the men and women of all armed services and their families, past and present
Bestwood Village Community Centre, Moor Road, Bestwood Village
Sunday 19th August, 1-3pm
Adults £7.50, Children £3

Women's Aid Bake a Difference
Throughout September, raise money for Women's Aid by having your own bake sale. This is an opportunity for individuals, companies, coffee shops and community groups across Nottingham and South Nottinghamshire to raise funds and awareness about their work.
For more info click here.

Messy Church
All welcome – food, fun, arts & crafts, & God slot
St Mary the Virgin & All Souls Parish Church, Highbury Road, Bulwell
2nd Sunday every month, 3-5pm

Messy Church Bestwood/Bulwell Forest
Bestwood Park Church, Beckhampton Rd, Bestwood Park
Various Thursdays, 4:30-6pm
Church on Rise Park, Revelstoke Way, Rise Park
Various Thursdays, 5-6:30pm

Free Community Cinema
Free screenings of films, everyone welcome!
St John’s Church, Key’s Close, Bulwell
2nd Friday every month, 7pm

Bulwell Connectors
Free monthly group developing opportunities for more art in public places in Bulwell. With trips to galleries and hands-on creative workshops, this group is for local people who want to be arts champions for Bulwell. Facilitated by Nottingham Contemporary associate artist Gillian Brent
Bulwell Riverside, Community Room 2 
2nd Tuesday every month, 6-8pm
For further info:, @CreativeNNorth,

Crochet Clinic
Community Room at Tesco Bulwell, Jennison St, NG6 8EQ (upstairs near the cafe)
First Wednesday of every month, 6:30pm–8:30pm
£5 (covers refreshments and materials)
For further info:,

How to contact me

If you would like to contact me, please email or give my Nottingham North constituency office a ring on 0115 975 2377.

If you are a constituent from Nottingham North e-mailing me regarding a casework issue you are my priority, so please ensure your message includes:
  • your full name
  • your full postal address, including postcode
  • a contact telephone number and
  • any helpful details relevant to your case such as date of birth, reference numbers etc.
Strict parliamentary protocol means I can only deal with issues on behalf of my own constituents. If you aren’t sure whether you live in Nottingham North, you can check who your local MP is by entering your postcode online here:

You may also wish to write to me with your concerns. If so please send your correspondence to Alex Norris MP, House of Commons, London, SW1A OAA. All constituents who take the time and trouble to write a personal letter will receive a reply as a matter of priority.
Other useful links
  • If you’d like to learn more about the Labour party their website is here.
  • To join the Labour Party click here.
  • Benefits Information: Here’s an excellent site that allows you to find out exactly what benefits you are eligible to claim: EntitledTo
  • Housing: please contact your City Council
  • Problems with benefits or the Child Support Agency? The Citizens Advice Bureau and the Nottingham Welfare Rights Service can give advice. Remember to have your National Insurance number handy if you make an inquiry.
  • Local schools / education matters: please contact your City Council.
  • Employment rights: see Citizens Advice Bureau or the Trades Union Congress for info.
  • Social services, environmental health, noise nuisance, parking, and Council Tax should all be addressed to the City Council.
  • Another useful website on public services is
  • For the main Parliamentary website click here and to explore the Parliamentary education site click here.
Copyright © 2018 Alex Norris MP, All rights reserved.

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