top of page

Recent News


Richmond Park Newsletter: August 21


I was concerned to learn this morning that community transmissions of Covid-19 have risen sharply this month following further easing of lockdown. I believe that the only way to keep us from experiencing a second wave of the virus, and potentially having another lockdown, is for everyone to be scrupulous in observing guidelines on social distancing and hygiene.

Please wear a mask whenever you are in an enclosed public space.

It is compulsory for shoppers to wear masks in stores, so please don't leave home without your mask. If you have any sort of job where you are in physical contact with the public, I ask you to please wear a mask even if the law says you don't have to. If you manage a retail business, please consider requiring all employees who can wear a mask to do so. This will help encourage compliance among customers too.

Frequent hand washing, maintaining physical distance and avoiding touching surfaces all remain important habits too. We must not let the reopening of Britain make us complacent about infection control. Until we have a vaccine the virus remains active in our community.


Hundreds of Barnes residents came to the bridge yesterday to talk about how important the bridge is and how their lives are impacted by its closure. They are rightly demanding action, and I fully agree with them that the Government needs to make this a priority. I was, therefore, very disappointed to be told that Baroness Vere from the Department for Transport is unavailable to meet with me to discuss Hammersmith Bridge.

Hammersmith Bridge is a vital north-south link across the River Thames. Its sudden closure to all users, following the discovery of more cracks in the pedestals, has come as a massive blow to communities on both sides of the river.

Plans for both a temporary bridge and the existing bridge repairs have been approved and we are just waiting for the Government to allocate funds to move both projects forward. This situation is urgent and the Government need to review its position immediately.

If you have not already done so, please sign our petition calling on the Government to provide urgent funding for a temporary walking and cycling bridge and to also commit to fully underwriting the cost of the repairs to the main bridge.

In the run up to last year's General Election the Secretary of State for Transport - Grant Shapps MP, visited the bridge and promised that if a Conservative Government was elected they would fund a temporary bridge and work with all parties to fix the main bridge. Eight months later there is still no funding available. The petition calls on the Government to honour the promise they made to the people of southwest London.


In response to last week's announcement of fare increases, and as Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Transport, I am calling for a freeze on rail fares across the country. Our railways are vital in the fight to tackle the climate emergency and cut air pollution. Rather than putting off commuters with another price hike, I believe the Government must help the industry recover from the COVID-19 crisis without pushing additional costs onto passengers. This is particularly important for my constituents as London's transport network is already far more expensive for passengers than any other major capital's transit system.