|This article appeared in The Diss
Express on 20 May 2005
'Royal' visit heralds start of new term
In his first column since his re-election, Diss Express columnist and South Norfolk MP Richard Bacon casts his eye over more local issues
I was delighted that opening the fourth Harleston and Waveney Festival was my first official function after the general election last week. The Festival goes from strength to strength.
Boleyn, a medieval street market and music from Smoke House Blue marching band.
Television personality Helen McDermott launched Harleston Heritage Group's Discovery Trail and local writers Richard Mabey, Roger Deakin and Terence Blacker celebrated life in East Anglia.
Once again, Judith Osborne and her committee have pulled out all the stops to ensure a memorable week. Many thanks also to the generous sponsors including South Norfolk Council, who had a major input.
There has been a lot in the news over the past few weeks about the poor diet many youngsters eat so I was pleased to go to Gissing Childrens Centre to help the young children there make a wholesome mid-morning snack.
I was supporting the Pre-School Learning Alliance's Feeding Young Imaginations campaign which seeks to promote healthy eating in the under five age group. Encouraging young children to enjoy healthy food is a key factor in their success later on in life.
The children and I had a great time cutting up carrots, cucumber and cheese - and tucking into them too. Linda Nash and her team have created a happy, lively and stimulating atmosphere at the Centre. It's open mornings from Monday to Friday, catering for 35 pre-school children as well as holding toddler and after school clubs and play groups throughout the week.
On a recent visit to the Norfolk Feather Company in Diss, I was impressed with Managing Director Mike Whittemore's investment in new equipment to make more pillows and cushion pads for many own brand labels such as Harrods and Conran.
Originally Norfolk Feather washed feathers but strict EU rules made continuing the process too expensive to compete against other EU countries such as France and Spain who flout the regulations.
With such unfair terms, even a successful company such as Norfolk Feather finds it difficult to compete against European manufacturers. As usual, we toe the line but our European counterparts flout the rules and get away with it.
I congratulate Mike Whittemore for going out and
finding new markets.
|© Richard Bacon 2010|