It is an extraordinary privilege to have been re-elected as the MP for Berwick-upon-Tweed, our wonderful constituency, which covers over 1,000 square miles of North Northumberland.
The fact that 53 per cent of all those who cast their vote on June 8 did so for me is a deeply humbling experience, and the opportunity afforded me to be returned as their Member of Parliament for another term and fight for everyone’s needs is one that I have taken up whole-heartedly.
The election campaign was a rollercoaster and a challenge on so many levels, especially because two horrific terror attacks in Manchester and London took place during the course of it.
I know every constituent was horrified and grieved for the families affected by those lawless attacks. The emergency services and the armed forces have been utterly resilient in the face of these deeply distressing events, and I know that we all salute their courage and determination to stop further atrocities.
One of the key challenges for the Government in this new Parliament will be to ensure our police and security services have all the tools they need and are encouraged and empowered to use them well to deal with those who threaten our way of life and the values the UK has, which set an example across the globe.
I shall continue to support and strengthen the Armed Forces Covenant and to work with colleagues who do similar work with the police to ensure that those serving, and their families, are properly supported as they put their lives on the line for all of us every day.
This will also be a Parliament in which we negotiate the best Brexit deal for the whole of the UK, from the northernmost reaches of Scotland to the southern point of Cornwall.
I will continue to be a strong voice for a full Brexit, which ensures we can become a global, outward looking Britain which can lead the world with free trade, the most effective tool in reducing inequality and poverty across the globe.
I want to ensure that our Brexit negotiations will strengthen jobs, bring greater prosperity to the UK and the developing world, and enhance our security through control of our borders and shared intelligence across the globe, fairness in trade and true democracy where voters have direct authority over those making their laws.
I will work closely with ministers to ensure North Northumberland issues are at the top of the agenda, in relation to Brexit in particular for agriculture and fisheries, as well as immigration controls and our ability to trade with Europe and the rest of the world.
In relation to day-to-day activities, I will be driving forward the Accountable Care Organisation, which will give us the chance to get our community hospital model right for the long-term and invest in sustainable social care solutions that give the right support to families who need it.
I will continue to work closely with the Highways England team as it gets the planning and procurement finalised to start putting down Tarmac for our A1 dualling.
And I will be working with the new Conservative county council to get the last 18 per cent of our patch fully connected to superfast broadband.
The voters have placed their trust in me to represent them in Westminster once more. I never take that trust for granted and will continue to work hard for our patch, being North Northumberland’s loud and determined voice in Parliament, and striving to improve the services we all rely on.