Last week, I was delighted to host the national launch of the incredibly popular Summer Reading Challenge. This is the fifth time I’ve hosted the event in Parliament and it was brilliant to see dozens of MPs from all of the different political parties coming together to champion this fantastic cause.

The Summer Reading Challenge is designed to encourage all primary-age children to use the school holidays to read for fun. It is a unique partnership between The Reading Agency and libraries across the UK, which last year saw over three quarters of a million children borrowing, reading and talking about their favourite books, including 2,638 in Swindon.

This year’s theme, Space Chase, is very suitable to Swindon as our town is proudly home to the magnificent UK Space Agency. I look forward to seeing so many enthusiastic young people, parents, and carers in libraries across the town this summer, taking full advantage of this initiative. People will also be able to sign up their youngsters at my annual Summer Activities Fair, which is taking place on Saturday 20th July at the Orbital Shopping Park from 11am-1pm.

On Saturday I was delighted to be able to continue my support of the brilliant Swindon Carers Centre. Each year, the organisation hosts a walk through the town centre to raise awareness and funds for the amazing family members and friends who care for someone close to them.

In both my role as the Minister for Disabled People and as a local MP, I have worked tirelessly to champion the vital role that carers play, and campaigned to improve the support and recognition they get.

Nationally, the Prime Minister has rightly set out an ambitious target for the UK to become the first major economy in the world to legislate for net zero emission by 2050, as we continue to be a world leader in tackling climate change.

This is hugely important for the future of our planet and we’re already making good progress: almost 40 per cent of our energy now comes from renewable sources, our carbon emissions are down by 25 per cent since 2010, we’ve had the longest run without burning coal to generate electricity since the industrial revolution, and we’ve planted over 11 million new trees. We are rightly delivering plans now to ensure that we leave the planet in a better state than we inherited it.

Finally, many will have seen that Robert Buckland and I are supporting Boris Johnson in his bid to become the next leader of the Conservative Party. At his official campaign launch, his measured and positive speech set out the importance of restoring trust in politics by breaking the deadlock on Brexit. Though he also made it clear that we need to look beyond Brexit, which is why he highlighted the importance of backing, not bashing, businesses of all sizes and hardworking taxpayers. This is key to delivering a growing economy that creates jobs and generates the tax revenues needed to fund our vital public services.

Boris showed during his time as London Mayor that he delivers; securing investment, cutting crime, building new affordable homes and leading the way on opportunity, equality and diversity for all. Crucially, he has the ability to reach out beyond the Westminster bubble and is passionate about ensuring our country prospers.