MP Guy hits the hiking trail

Hexham MP Guy Opperman.
Hexham MP Guy Opperman.

A NORTHUMBERLAND MP is fighting fit after recovering from brain surgery.

And to prove that he is 100 per cent, Guy Opperman is hiking the majority of Hadrian’s Wall over the next five days.

During the evenings he will be holding Ask Guy events for members of the public to talk to him and local councillors about any issues, one of which will take place today from 7.30pm in Ponteland Memorial Hall.

The 60-mile walk from Wallsend to Carlisle will raise money for the National Brain Appeal, which is dedicated to raising funds for The National Hospital of Neurology and Neurosurgery in London where his operation took place, and the Tynedale Community Hospice.

The 46-year-old, whose Hexham constituency also includes Stannington, Belsay and Whalton, said: “During my recovery my two offices received in excess of 350 cards and letters from friends, constituents and colleagues in the House of Commons, including two letters from the Prime Minister.

“This was a further boost to me after I was told that the tumour, which had been completely taken out, was benign and will not re-occur.

“I didn’t want to return to the job until I was 100 per-cent fit and ready to go back full time and I’m glad to say that I have now reached this stage.

“I’m doing the Hadrian’s Wall walk to celebrate and support our tourism industry, prove my fitness and help two fantastic charities.

“Through my NHS Yes! campaign I have tried to highlight the fantastic work of health professionals and volunteers.

“However, now that the NHS has saved my life for a second time (the first was when the former jockey suffered a horrendous fall in a horse race), I thought raising some funds for these charities was a good way to say thank you.

“The Ask Guy events have been organised at no cost to the taxpayer and they are an opportunity for people to speak to all of their elected representatives in one place. This means they can discuss a range of issues, from the Euro and law and order to gritters and litter bins.”

One of the first appointments upon his return was in Stannington where he joined Bob Neill MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Communities and Local Government, on a visit with Banks Mining to discuss the local economy and Shotton Surface Mine.

Mr Opperman, who now lives in Stamfordham, will continue to campaign on a range of issues in the parliamentary year ahead.

These include broadband, equal pay, fuel poverty and for improvements to be made to the facilities at local high schools, including Ponteland.