East Ham MP’s delight at visit to borough by Commonwealth parliamentarians
07:48 26 June 2014
East Ham MP Stephen Timms hosted a visit from a group of Commonwealth Parliamentarians who were in London for a seminar.
The group of nine met Mr Timms at Newham Dockside on Friday, the headquarters of Newham Council where he introduced them to the borough and several council officers who highlighted the history of borough and drew attention to the opportunities created by the Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2012.
The group also visited Ascension Church in Custom House, which was one of the venues of NEWway Night Shelter. NEWway was established last winter in response to the rising levels of poverty and homelessness in Newham. The Parliamentarians met with the project’s co-ordinator, Jonny Adams, as well as one of the shelter’s former residents.
The project - supported by local churches from across Newham - finished for the year at the end of January having provided 1,139 warm beds for the night to 61 different guests.
The delegation then travelled to London City Airport, where they met Chief Executive, Declan Collier. Afterwards, the Parliamentarians were given a tour by the terminal building by Marketing Director, Jeremy Probert, and Liam McKay, Head of Public Affairs. Jeremy and Liam spoke about the importance of the airport to Newham, which currently employs 2,000 people – many of whom are local residents. They concluded their day with a visit to Sandringham Primary School, where head teacher Robert Cleary led an assembly on the Commonwealth.
Mr Timms said: “I am delighted to have had the opportunity to show the Commonwealth Parliamentarians around East Ham. One of the group, an MP from the Falklands Islands, had been here before whilst she was a student in the 70s and remarked just how much had changed.
“A recurring theme of the day was that London is “moving east” and that Newham will be at the front of the capital’s plans in the coming years. It is clear that this is the case: we have Stratford International, Westfield and, of course, the Olympics. On top of this, in the coming years Crossrail will open, the Royal Docks will be regenerated and an Asian Business Port – situated opposite London City Airport – will be built, bringing with it 20,000 jobs.”