Christopher Whiteside MBE is a Conservative activist.
He has served as a County, City & District, Borough, Town and Parish councillor, and has also been a school governor and health authority member.
He lives and works in the North of England, particularly spending time in Cumbria, Lancashire and Yorkshire.
Back to school
This week, pupils across England and Wales have started returning to school full-time, with robust protective measures in place to keep them safe as they get back into the classroom to learn and be with their friends.
Teachers and other school staff have spent the summer months working tirelessly to make classrooms Covid-secure in preparation for a full return of pupils from this week.
All four of the UK’s chief medical officers have backed the full return of pupils to school, highlighting that as the risk of contracting coronavirus in school is very small, it is far more damaging for a child’s development, health and wellbeing to be away from school any longer.
Schools have put additional safeguards in place to ensure both teachers and staff are kept as safe as possible, including:
Primary children will stay in groups to reduce the risk of spreading the virus.
In areas of local restrictions, older children and staff will wear face coverings in communal areas where they can’t easily socially distance.
Strict hygiene and cleaning protocols are in place and PPE is being distributed to every school, along with a small number of home testing kits for anyone who develops symptoms and is not able to get tested easily .
Local authorities have been given an extra £40 million to increase school transport to reduce pressure on public transport, and pupils who can are being encouraged to walk or cycle to school.
Getting children back into school has been a national priority for the Conservative government. Nothing will have a greater effect on the life chances of our children than getting back to learning, back to playing and back to being kids again.
Please note that the post below was published more than ten year ago on 21st November 2009 Nick Herbert MP, shadow cabinet member for the Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs, was in Cumbria this morning to see the areas affected by the flooding. He writes on Conservative Home about his visit. Here is an extract. I’ve been in Cumbria today to see the areas affected by the floods. I arrived early in Keswick where I met officials from the Environment Agency. Although the river levels had fallen considerably and homes were no longer flooded, the damage to homes had been done. And the water which had got into houses wasn’t just from the river – it was foul water which had risen from the drains. I talked to fire crews who were pumping flood water back into the river, and discovered that they were from Tyne & Wear and Lancashire. They had been called in at an hours’ notice and had been working on the scene ever since, staying at a local hotel. You cannot fail to be impressed by the
It isn't impossible to find people making an intelligent, optimistic, free-market case for a Britain which would be open to trade with the whole world rather than a haven for Xenophobic little Englanders. The trouble is that you do have to go out and look for them. Writing as a professional economist - e.g. someone with two degrees in the discipline who has used the skills I acquired with those degrees for the majority of my professional life - I was not expecting the debate about the economic advantages of Leave versus Remain to be the walkover for the latter which it has been to date. The economic case about the risks of Brexit put by George Osborne and the Treasury is not without substance or supporting arguments, and it is silly and childish to dismiss their case as pure scaremongering but that does NOT mean there are no counterarguments and personally I think they have overstated a legitimate case. But it is most depressing that there has been almost no publicity given
I am devastated by the news that my friend and colleague, County Councillor Arthur Lamb died unexpectedly but peacefully in his sleep yesterday morning. He was thirty-one years old. (Picture from Whitehaven News from CCC election count 2017) Arthur William Creighton Lamb was Chairman of Copeland Conservatives at the time of the Copeland by-election, in which the Conservatives achieved the first governing party by-election gain on a directly comparable basis since Worcester in 1878. He was still chairman when the Conservatives held the seat in the 2017 general election. That year he was also elected County Councillor for the Cleator Moor East and Frizington division of Cumbria County Council and at the time of his death was Chief Whip of the Conservative group on the county council. He was also Deputy Chairman of Cumbria Conservatives. Arthur was a perfect example of what is meant by the expression "An old head on young shoulders." He was exceptionally shrewd and had a real kn