It’s been a relatively quiet year for Swindon’s two MPs, after what was a fairly tumultuous 2022.

In 2022 you might remember North Swindon’s Justin Tomlinson began the year as Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party with a special responsibility for campaigning.

He had been appointed by PM Boris Johnson, but after Mr Johnson resigned facing revolt by many of his ministers and MPs, Mr Tomlinson resigned his post so he could campaign for Kemi Badenoch to become leader of the party and Prime Minister.

Ms Badenoch’s campaign did not succeed.

South Swindon MP Sir Robert Buckland had an even busier 2022, starting as a backbencher having recently been fired by Mr Johnson. He then took a cabinet post as Secretary of State for Wales in the last months of Mr Johnson's time in Number 10, and initially supported Rishi Sunak for leader. He switched his support to Liz Truss, and kept his position in cabinet under her, but that was short-lived.

When Ms Truss resigned and was succeeded by Rishi Sunak, he returned to the backbenches where he had started the year.

With 2023 being a what seems to be a rare year with only one Prime Minister in post, both our MPs have remained on the backbenches concentrating largely on constituency work.

This includes work by Mr Buckland on autism and young people and their life chances – he is chairman of the all-party parliamentary groups on autism, learning disability, and domestic violence and abuse.

He was asked by the Prime Minister and the work and pensions secretary to lead a review on autism employment and said: ”Our workplaces and businesses would benefit so much from the huge potential that autistic people represent.

“If we close the employment gap for autistic people, it will not just mean individual fulfilment but a significant boost to employment and productivity for our country.”

He was elected as the chairman of the Northern Ireland Affairs select committee in late November.

Mr Tomlinson has spent some of the year working closely with Blunsdon supporting its role in the community, and has also visited a number of schools – his work with secondary and above students studying citizenship and particular his visits to primary schools to engage younger pupils with the democratic process remain very popular.

As the year started drawing to a close both MPs voted against the government, and for a Labour amendment to the Prisoners and Victims bill to establish a body to pay compensation for the victims of the infected blood scandal - patients who were given blood infected by Hepatitis C or HIV in the 1970s and 1980s.

The vote gave Prime Minister Rishi Sunak his first defeat in the House of Commons.

And at time of writing, the government’s troubles with immigration seems to be convulsing the party somewhat.

What is certain is that they will face a general election in the next 13 months, and their main opponents have been settled.

Heidi Alexander has been the Labour candidate for South Swindon for 18 months or so – but Mr Tomlinson’s opponent Will Stone, a local councillor, was only adopted at the start of the year, and only then after the local party had picked a different candidate, London councillor Chris Lloyd first.