Working to Protect Endangered Species

On our summer holiday we did our bit for the conservation of the endangered sea turtles. We went to the mass release of hatchlings at Alagadi Beach by Society for the Protection of Turtles (SPOT – Kuzey Kıbrıs Kaplumbağaları Koruma Cemiyeti) and Exeter University students.

The hatchlings we released into the sea were rescued from nests where they became trapped and would have died. By having the public assist in mass releases it greatly improves the chance that the hatchlings will survive over being released individually.

The volunteers were walked in darkness to the seafront and we were each given two hatchlings to release together. No white light was allowed as the hatchlings navigate their way to the sea by moonlight.

A wonderful experience!

 


Turkish exams saved!

In Turkey I was asked about our new Prime Minister Boris Johnson and what he could do for the Turkish community.

I told them how he had already helped the Turkish community in education.

I was fortunate to meet the PM during the 2015 General Election, when he was the then Mayor of London and he came to Enfield, on the train using the services he managed, to support Conservative candidates standing for election. I was standing in Edmonton and Nick de Bois was standing in Enfield North.

We met him off the train at the aptly named Turkey Street Station and he gave a rousing speech to supporters.

He was asked to support the Save Turkish Exams campaign which was threatened with retirement. He not only supported but used his influence to change policy and Turkish exams continue today.

He already has delivered for the Turkish community and will continue to do so.


Education & Arkadas in Istanbul

I was delighted to meet Prof Dr Zeliha Koçak Tufan, from the Turkish Government, Council of Education, in Istanbul, where I saw a summer school for overseas students in action. I was introduced to Prof Tufan at the T.C. Londra Büyükelçiliği / Turkish Embassy in London by HE Umit Yalcin last month, where we met to discuss initiatives to support Syrians.

The location for the summer school was in the historic building Rabi Madrasa, pictured below, constructed by the Ottoman architect and engineer Mimar Sinan and built in the 16th century and now used by the Turkish Academy of Science.

I was given the opportunity to speak to the students about the social action initiative I am working on, which brought me to the Education Department, Project Arkadas, and about my work as Conservative Friends of Turkey.

A lovely visit followed by a wonderful lunch at Istanbul University, thank you for your hospitality.

The start of #Arkadas


Bowes Southgate Green

I attended a meeting at Bowes Southgate Green School on Thursday 18th July at the request of a parent because the school has been threatened with closure by Enfield local authority.

The new 1FE Bowes Southgate Green School opened in September 2014 following a campaign I initiated due to the lack of primary school places in the local area. Parents and the local community were delighted by the proposals for a new school on land adjacent to Grovelands Park set out by Gary Barnes, a council officer from Enfield back in 2013. The new school would open on a temporary site at Broomfield School until the Grovelands project, plans below, could commence following a site survey by English Heritage.

Five years after the school opened a Bowes Southgate Green mum tells me that she doesn’t know where her child’s brother will go to school as Enfield are threatening to close Bowes Southgate Green. Enfield’s Neil Best said at the meeting that Enfield local authority don’t have a site for the school and renewal of the lease for the temporary site with Broomfield School is not guaranteed. There will be annual reviews to determine the site status.

At the meeting an Enfield Education representative ridiculed the proposal of a school on the land adjacent to Grovelands Park, proposals that were put forward by themselves. What better environment for a school than next to a park with green space for children to explore and thrive in. It is certainly better use of the Enfield owned derelict land than to leave it for bad behaviour and drug related activities that currently take place.

The Enfield Council representative gave the impression that a school would have an adverse effect on the park, either she has not done her homework or was trying to stop debate before it started. The school could have been built on land adjacent to the park but the Council admitted at the meeting that because of their lack of commitment no progress was made.

A new school would not impact on the current Grovelands Park boundaries and the project had the full support of the Friends of Grovelands Park group.

The meeting became very political with the Council implying that the process for funding a site limited them. I had to remind Enfield Local Authority that Ashmole Primary School, 2FE established in 2016 moved into brand new state of the art building in September 2018 following Government investment of £7.5mn, bringing investment and jobs into the local area. The school had been created because of the commitment of all of the stakeholders.

Ashmole Primary School is a free school that resides in London Borough of Barnet but due to its location on the Enfield border provides approximately 50% of its school places to Enfield children. The Enfield local authority is passing its responsibility for school places to other local authorities whilst expanding schools that are unpopular with parents in its own borough and threatening to shut down schools that are popular with parents.

Bambos Charalambous, MP for Enfield Southgate, refused to make any firm commitment to assist in resolving the issue and implied that the school at Grovelands was no longer required because Ashmole Primary School had met local demand. I offered to work with him to find a solution but he was reluctant to engage with me.

There were over 400 applications for 60 school places for the 2019 admission to Ashmole Primary School so I can inform the MP that there is more than enough demand for a new 2FE on the Grovelands site. The local authority and the local MP don’t seem to understand that parents want to send their children to outstanding schools near to where they live, not to schools where space has been created in a poorly judged Enfield expansion program.

Council vs Free School? The evidence is here, this is the reality for two mums who live near to each other.

Bowes Southgate Green Mum – is scared for the future of her family, will her child’s sibling be going to the same school as his brother? Uncertainty and fear is her future whilst Enfield holds annual reviews to determine what their future will be.

Ashmole Primary School Mum – is delighted, her three children will all go to Ashmole Primary School in a brand new state of the art building, built to accommodate 420 children which has just been rated outstanding by Ofsted.

This is about real people, not policy! Do the right thing Enfield!

Sign the petition to save Bowes Southgate Green https://www.change.org/p/london-borough-of-enfield-save-bow…


100 Years of Conservative Women’s Organisation

100 years of the Conservative Women’s Organisation 
100 Conservative Women 
100 words

Day 101 – In this 100th year of the Conservative Women’s Organisation CWO London have featured 100 inspirational Conservative women, in 100 words, over 100 days on our Facebook page.

Thank you to everyone who contributed by suggesting women and providing data. It has been a joy researching those that were featured and learning about their achievements. One thing is obvious from all of the women is that hard work and determination can do great things.

Sadly the 100 days are over and there are many more women that we wanted to feature but couldn’t. Let’s continue to recognise women’s achievements.

 


Ashmole Primary School Opening 2019

My journey started in 2011, there weren’t, and still aren’t, enough good school places in the area so I campaigned to increase that number.

When I started I never really believed that we could do this, but we have built a fantastic facility and created an amazing school.

Five years ago we had to find parents who would sign a form to say “yes” we will send our child to this imaginary school. I gave forms out to friends and mums, to nurseries and toddler groups and we, the Ashmole team were successful in our free school application.

We all had a part to play in making this dream a reality!

For the first intake of children to the school, parents had to take a huge leap of faith.

When employing Mr Tofallis, he had to take a huge leap of faith that this imagined school would materialise but yet here we are.

There was nothing but a green field to see when parents said they would send their children to our school.

But they took that leap of faith and the applications came in. We were oversubscribed then and continue to be oversubscribed every year.

That leap of faith is the essence of Ashmole, some things money can’t buy!

You cannot buy the enthusiasm, positive atmosphere and ethos that is Ashmole! It is part of everyone who has been involved in the setting up of Ashmole Primary School and now in its day to day running.

From parents to teachers, from the senior leadership team to support staff and from governors and trustees to the local community.

We have all worked our hardest to ensure the best outcomes for children – to provide that outstanding education that children deserve.

Our journey is not complete we are looking forward to the challenges that Key stage 2 will bring to us and the inevitable Ofsted inspection.

One thing I have learnt as a governor and trustee is that there are challenges around every corner and that each year brings new challenges. We will never forget that “excellence is a habit”.

To mark this special occasion we were joined by the Right Honourable Viscount Younger of Leckie who opened the brand-new building and the Right Honourable Theresa Villiers, MP for Chipping Barnet.

School Tour

Picture 1 of 6


Arkadash Fundraising Dinner

Conservative Friends of Turkey hosted a dinner with guest speakers Rt Hon James Brokenshire MP, Secretary of State of Housing, Communities and Local Government and His Excellency, Ümit Yalçın Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey. 

We were fortunate to have two speakers ideally placed to strengthen the bond between Britain and Turkey. 

The evening was organised to fundraise for a new initiative to support Syrian refugees in Turkey, Project Arkadash.

Project Arkadash is planning to start a social action project in Istanbul, in 2019.

Project Arkadash’s vision is to:

  • provide a friendly caring, helping hand to those who have been deprived through crises
  • to helping Syrian refugees

Project Arkadash values are:

  • to help those who have been displaced through conflict
  • to commit to building strong sustainable communities
  • to commit to doing good for the whole (good for the community they go into)
  • that family is of fundamental importance
  • that all people should be treated with respect
  • that everyone’s point of view has value.

The plan is to deliver a first action project in Istanbul in the summer of 2019, and provide sustainable logistics for the first and subsequent action projects.

Importantly, we want to build a network of activists, supporters and sponsors. Some of the attendees indicated that they wanted to volunteer and signed up.

Join me and volunteer for Project Arkadash Sign up #IamArkadash

 


Pankhurst Party

In the centenary year when women got the vote and on the birthday of Emmeline Pankhurst the Conservative Women’s Organisation hosted parties up and down the country to celebrate the contribution that Emmeline Pankhurst, and women like her had made to suffrage.  

The NW London CWO hosted a party where leading women from different walks of life were invited to speak. I spoke alongside inspirational women, Theresa Villiers MP, Cllr Alison Moore, Lieutenant Colonel Angela Richardson, Pauline Fynne and Jill Summers.

In 2018 Emmeline Pankhurst’s birthday fell on World Cup Final day and Wimbledon final day. I spoke about how wonderful it was that the England men’s football team was finally equaling the women’s England football team by reaching the semi finals but that the men still had a long way to go in other sports such as the Ashes and World Cup Rugby to be equal with women.  

Unfortunately in other areas such as representation in Parliament, on Councils and on Trust Boards the number of women to men is not equal which is why I am a women’s activist. Women make up approximately 50% of the population so it is not unreasonable to expect equal numbers in policy making positions. I am the only woman on my Trust Board, Ashmole Academy Trust and I promise to remedy that over the next year.

There are some excellent examples right here and now of women succeeding. Children, and having a family does not have to be a blocker. New Zealand’s Prime Minister, Jacinda Arden was pregnant whilst in office and had her baby whilst serving as Prime Minister. Benazir Bhutto, the first woman Prime Minister of Pakistan also had children whilst in office. They are an inspiration!

Women are able to vote today because of Emmeline Pankhurst and women like her. I want to see more women in Parliament, more women on Councils, more women on Trust Boards and I will do that on my Trust Board!

I’m asking for more women to get involved, I’m asking women to stand! #AskHerToStand

Let’s get equality and empower our daughters!

 


Project Arkadash

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#IamArkadash

Vision 

Providing a friendly, caring, helping hand to those who have been deprived through crises.

Values

A commitment to provide help to those that have been displaced through conflict

A commitment to building strong, sustainable communities

A commitment for doing good for the whole

A belief that family is of fundamental importance

A belief that all people should be treated with respect

A belief that everyone’s point of view has value

Objectives

To deliver the first action project in Istanbul in the summer of 2019

To provide sustainable logistics for the first and subsequent action project

To build a network of activists, supporters and sponsors


Supporting Women into Public Life Dinner

 

The CWO NW London held a fundraising dinner to support women into public life. Many thanks to our wonderful speakers whose speeches were inspiring to men and women.

We heard from the Rt Hon Penny Mordaunt MP about her experiences as a woman in politics, from His Excellency Abdurrahman Bilgic the Ambassador of Turkey about how women in Turkey hold key roles and half of Turkey’s Ambassadors are women, Virginia Crosbie director of Women2Win on her experiences as a candidate and from Rehman Chishti who gave a rallying cry for women standing in the forthcoming London elections.

Thank you to the CWO NW London committee for making the event a success.


Women’s Activism

Passionate, Committed, Delivering

Passionate

I am passionate about the aims and beliefs of the CWO. The CWO will have been in existence for 100 years in 2019 and it is sad that women still do not have equality in public life. Women make up over 50% of the population but we do not have equal numbers in national or local government, governing bodies or trust boards. I want to help women get equality and for that to happen we need to have more women raising the issues for debate.

The CWO helped me when I needed help and that has given me the drive to help other women. In 2015 I stood as the Conservative Parliamentary candidate in Edmonton, a no-hoper, ultra-safe Labour seat and the London CWO donated funds to my campaign and since then I have tried to heip more women into public life. 

Committed

I am committed to making the CWO a stronger organisation and have worked hard to produce tangible outcomes since I first got involved. My first experience of the CWO was a training session, I knew I wanted to get involved but didn’t know how to go about it and my fist campaigning session was for Julie Iles who is now the CWO National Chairman.

Since being appointed North West London CWO Area Chairman I created a committee of amazing hard working CWO activists. Each member brings their own unique skills and qualities to enrich our team. The key skill that we all have is team work and the ability to work together in unity to achieve the CWO’s outcomes.

I created and edited the CWO London newsletter and worked with colleagues to get the newsletter emailed to London. 

I have campaigned hard with other members of the London CWO to engage with women on the campaign trail and to make campaigning inclusive, social and fun.

In education I have supported women into roles of Chairman of Committees and recommended women onto Boards and Committees.

Delivering

I have delivered:

a) I have delivered cross party campaign training to women candidates standing for election in Bosnia Herzegovina
b) In education I delivered equality and feminism training to school teachers on the social action project in Rwanda
c) I sat on a panel at an Inclusion and Diversity Conference with an audience of members from the Balkans to discuss how diversity informs policy debate. I used my experiences as a woman of ethnic background to inform my speech
d) I was a key note speaker on a Women on Boards panel to present and discuss my experiences on a Multi-Academy Trust Board
e) I created a NW London CWO committee of wonderful hard working activists who work together to achieve the ambitions of the CWO. We have debated, fundraised, campaigned and created a group that achieves successful outcomes for women
f) I have worked with and supported all of the committee, one of the members has gone on to become a Director of Women2Win and most of the committee were candidates in the London elections
g) I organised a fundraising event which raised money for women standing in elections attended by Penny Mordaunt, Secretary of State for International Development, His Excellency Abdulrahman Bilgic, Ambassador to the Republic of Turkey and Rehman Chishti, Vice Chairman of the Conservative Party for Communities 
h) The NW Area committee have donated approximately £1500 to the Greater London CWO committee which will be given to women standing in the next General Election to make a real difference for women into public life
i) I created and chaired a debating event to encourage grassroots level involvement and training for future politicians in a supportive environment
j) I have supported community events such as World’s Buddha Day and Interfaith events with colleagues who promote community engagement.

What do I bring?

In my professional career and in all aspects of my life I would never ask anyone to do anything that I wouldn’t do myself.

I lead from the front and provide the expertise and example from experience I have accrued over the years. I want to maintain and energise women’s activities in London. 

I want to encourage further engagement with our supporters to inform about events and training, to encourage their involvement and to encourage them to stand at all levels of public life.

I want to continue the CWO National’s aims to London women. This summer the CWO NW London held a Pankhurst Party commemorating the birthday of Emmeline Pankhurst and her contribution to women 100 years after women got the vote. 

I will share the good work of the CWO and Women2Win and their advice, resources, tools and materials to support more women into public life. I will provide training and development for other women and for the Party.

I work towards creating and providing opportunities for women where I can and support women to get involved in policy debate, training or other areas of the Conservative Party.

I want more women in public life and will work hard for that outcome!


Ashmole Primary School and the Campaign for a New School

I visited Ashmole Primary School today for a meeting on the permanent school building and it bought home to me the enormity of what has been achieved by dedicated members of the Ashmole team, my campaigner group and me!
 
Ashmole Primary School’s permanent building is a building site but by the end of this year it will be ready for children to move in.
 
When I started this campaign I never believed that I would be part of the team that founded a brand new school! The road I traveled to get to this point has been full of challenges, of highs and lows but perseverance, determination and a stubborn resolution to have a new school made me carry on. There is one real reward that I have from this campaign and that was the hug from a crying mum on the opening day of the school. Her tears were of happiness, telling me that I had changed her, and her family’s life! I will never forget that moment and as I write this I am moved again.
 
The campaign started in 2012 from my front room. A group of community minded parents and grandparents who lived in an area that didn’t fall into any primary school catchment area decided to campaign for increased primary school provision. We each paid £10 to produce 2000 leaflets to distribute in the area letting residents know of the problem with school places and to gain support.
 
That was the beginning of SWEAT, the South West Enfield Action Team. We worked hard using our website https://wewantlocalschools.wordpress.com/… to get our message out there. We lobbied the Council, we went to the local press, we met our MP, we spoke to Councillors, we tried everything to raise awareness. I hated the way that Labour Councillors treated our problem as part of their political game, they didn’t care about us, we were a community group that could be exploited. The Labour Cabinet Member for Education called me naive for thinking I could do anything about school places, in a public meeting after I had spoken so that I was unable to respond. Political point scoring! But I did it! Despite what the Labour Cabinet Member for Education thought.
 
I used my influence and position as a school governor at Ashmole Academy to pursue a dream that has resulted in the building site pictured. One of the biggest disappointments for the Ashmole team was when our first free school bid failed! I felt that I had let down all those parents who had become wrapped in my enthusiasm and we can do it attitude … we had failed! I was bitterly disappointed…. it wasn’t a failure, it was a setback! Once we got over the disappointment, the Ashmole team took on board the feedback from the Department for Education and we submitted another, much improved free school bid and we were successful! I was so happy, not for me as my children would not get into the school but for all those parents who could send their children to an outstanding local school.
 
I am delighted that some of my fellow campaigners have gone on to become school governors and trustees.
 
My message is that if you see an injustice and if you feel strongly enough about it, others will feel the same and follow you. You can do anything if you put your mind to it! Ignore the nay sayers!
To find out more about Ashmole, SWEAT and myself visit:
 

Social Action

I was delighted to take part in the Conservative Party’s social action project, Project Umubano in its 10th anniversary year in Rwanda. The project is making a difference to the everyday lives of the people of Africa.
 
My brief was to teach secondary school mentors English and about their new school curriculum. Teaching teachers was a new challenge for me as my expertise is in school governance and not teaching. I campaigned for increased primary school provision in my local area and was part of the team that created a brand new free school in 2016, Ashmole Primary School.
 
Ashmole Academy Trust, where I am Chairman, very kindly donated nearly ½ a ton of secondary school books to the project which were gratefully received. St Paul’s Church of England School, mums and friends also made very generous donations of books and other resources to Project Umubano. In total I shipped 27 boxes weighing 413 Kg, the equivalent weight of 6 people or 2 gorillas, to Rwanda.
 
I am grateful to those who donated and for encouraging their children to part with their possessions. My son Harry refused to part with his Spiderman mask so I had to sort out all my donations whilst the children were at school! 
 
I spent a considerable time collecting donations and boxing them up so that 27 boxes were loaded and delivered to Parliament. I had some help from my husband for the physical work of lifting and shifting as I just wasn’t up to gorilla carrying! Umubano Primary School were delighted with the donations.
 
My area of activity was education and for four days I taught, along with my classroom buddy Ewan, secondary school mentors English and about their new school curriculum. 

In every class of students there are memorable characters and Ewan’s and my class had its share. There was Bango the class joker, Isabel the chatterbox and Jean Claude who was so serious. There were many memorable moments such as when my class argued with me about how you pronounce “play”. I was definitely right! Ewan, who has a Geography degree, drew a map of Rwanda to help in an exercise which also drew lots of criticism from the class, until he proved he was right using his phone and the internet. I did laugh.

I also cried. What took us to Rwanda was the terrible genocide of 1994 and there were many incredibly moving moments. The week concluded at the Genocide Memorial Centre where Susan, a survivor from the Holocaust, and Edisa, a survivor from the Rwandan genocide, told their stories.

 

Technology

I have had a varied and full career in Technical Engineering and am currently an IT Engineer delivering million pound networking projects for local government authorities. I have procured innovative solutions for Ashmole Primary school and embraced digital communications in my voluntary work for the Conservatives and my campaigning.

I run a Coding Club for Key Stage 1 children to introduce young children to the world of coding, giving them the skills to thrive and survive in the world of tomorrow.

Text from a post I wrote in January 2017:

Computers now play an increasingly important part of the world we live in. Technology is literally everywhere and in the last few years has been advancing at an incredible rate. This means that children interact with technology at a very young age and it will play a core part of their life in the future. Coding Colossus believe that because our children are being introduced to technology at a young age, they should also be introduced to concepts like coding at a young age.

I’m sure we could debate forever what our children should learn when they are growing up, and advanced programming skills would probably not appear high on the list, but there are some core skills that most of us would agree upon. Skills such as discipline, working together, being able to express yourself and being able to communicate. Coding may not directly teach these skills but children will learn them as they start to code and play with technology. By taking up coding children will learn logical thinking, problem solving, to experiment, to learn from failure, they will learn to ask for help, and learn that hard work, patience and persistence does pay off in the end. Coding doesn’t have to be a boring, no fun exercise. It can be great fun regardless of how old you are. Using trial and error children will probably create some unexpected and silly results which they will love, but ultimately achieving what they set out to do keeps them coming back for more.

For example; children who are learning how to create a game, may during it’s creation have characters moving in unexpected directions on the screen, but they’re likely to keep on coming back to fix these bugs as the end result will be a game which they made themselves and can come back to and play as often as they like.

At Coding Colossus we believe that in this modern world having computer skills is now a necessity. Even if our children are not learning how to code then they still need to basic skills to survive and thrive in a technology integrated world. Learning to code helps give our children a better understanding of the rapidly changing technology that affects them every day, and learning to code can help our children develop the skills to play a part in this change.

You are never too young, or too old (parents!), to learn to code. Pre-school children can use a tablet or smart phone. By using graphically based coding tools they can learn ’cause and effect’, which helps give them a head start when they start computing as part of the school curriculum, which helps build the foundations for them to be successful in today’s world. One of the great things about learning to code is that it helps build a child’s problem solving skills. Learning to manipulate code means understanding a problem, working out the steps required to solve a problem, testing, revisiting the steps, and choosing between possible options to arrive at a solution. Coding helps our children learn the skills to problem solve, and developing problem solving skills at an early age can only give our children a head start.

Coding is a language, so teaching our children coding at a young age gives them similar benefits to learning a foreign language. They don’t just learn to work with technology easier, they learn to communicate better. All children need to be computer literate if they want to survive and thrive in the modern world. Coding takes this a step further, giving the child an opportunity to learn better ways to interact with the technology around them. They will learn how to solve problems and gain the skills they need to be successful in later in life. 


Training Women Candidates

I went to Bosnia Herzegovina to train potential female candidates for their General Election to be held in 2018.
 
The political system in Bosnia Herzegovina is very different to the British electoral system. Theirs is a system of proportions with the candidates coming from a single list that is closed three months before the election. The rules surrounding the list means that 40% of the listed candidates will be women and a percentage will be youth. There are different challenges around women’s selection given that there are guarantees of a number getting on the list.
 
The candidates that I met on the workshop are highly educated women with very few being from a business background and some still students. The history of Bosnia Herzegovina impacts on the economy and industry of the country. One of the problems highlighted during my three day stay was that Bosnia is becoming a country of old people. One of the young candidates impressed me with her passion for the country and desire to be a candidate so that she could do something about the exodus of young people from her country.
 
My colleagues, Gio and David, and I were very impressed by the female candidates when they pitched to us at the mock selection panel. Some things are the same in Bosnia as in the UK, such as how can a woman stand out against fierce competition?
 
The workshop or training worked well because we had a fantastic translator Dragan. I was happy to give him a new word which he hadn’t heard before, hustings.
 
The session concluded with a visit from Senad Šepić MP who had flown in from London that morning. I hope to visit Bosnia Herzegovina again and see how the country develops and progresses.

Electoral Reform

How can it be that we in Britain, who set great store by our democratic process, can permit an electoral system which is so easy to cheat?

Most people will know that it is against the law to vote twice in a General Election, or for that matter any national vote, but most people probably do not realise that there is no method to control how many times you may vote in a national election.

If you have two places of residence, in different areas, then you are entitled to vote in local elections in both local authorities, which may not be unreasonable. The fact that the register to vote on local interests is held by the local authority is to be expected but the local property based register is also used for voting on national interests and therein lies the problem.

An individual who appears on two local authority’s election registers will automatically receive two polling cards for a General Election and there are no checks what-so-ever to ensure the individual only votes once. Just like there are no checks on a person’s identity when they come to vote.

Society sets great store on encouraging people to vote, reminding them of the sacrifices of those who have fought and died for the right, that women have barely had the right to vote for 100 years, and that in some countries in the world people still are unable to vote.

Surely it is an affront to all those who have made sacrifices in the past to not have a level of due diligence when allowing people to vote?

I would like to see debated:

  • A national register to list those who can vote on the national interest
  • Photographic ID checks to prove an individual’s identity when they vote
  • The right to be able to vote more than once
  • Greater controls on postal votes
  • Greater controls on proxy votes

I can hear the naysayers already with their issues on the complexities of merging local electoral registers, introducing standard ID checks, and the possible impact of a national database on an individual’s privacy.

Democracy is a prized asset and we should ensure that it is not open to abuse or tarnish by modern society. We need to debate this and if agreed introduce stepped change to ensure the value of democracy is not diminished.

When the Parliamentary Petition Committee is re-convened, following the 2017 General Election, I shall be raising a petition for Electoral Reform to have the current electoral register and voting processes debated by Parliament, with the desired outcome of a national database and greater controls on voting.


Thank You

This morning whilst I slept Jon told our children that Mummy got more votes than last time but didn’t win the election.

Harry said “I should have taken some leaflets to school and then Mummy would have won”.

Poppy said “Never mind we’ll save them for next year.”

The General Election is over and I would like to thank all who supported me.

It wasn’t the result that I had hoped for personally and nationally but the reality is that Labour will not be forming the next government, have lost 3 general elections in a row, and have barely improved since their 2010 defeat.
Democracy is a great thing. I accept the result and will move on.

Next step to hold a thank you party for all of those who have helped on the campaign trail.


Parliamentary Candidate for Edmonton

I am delighted to have been confirmed as the Conservative Party candidate for Edmonton. I have lived in Edmonton and the local area all of my life. I am a working mother of ethnic origin who is representative of this community.

I have a full career in digital technology and engineering and I understand the challenges for working families who aspire for the best for their children.

Only a Conservative Government can deliver the strong and stable economy required to deliver the best start in life for children, only a Conservative Government can deliver an improving NHS, only a Conservative Government can negotiate a good deal for Britain in the Brexit negotiations, only a Conservative Government delivers the family values that is best for a nation.

I would be honoured to represent Edmonton as the Member of Parliament and I promise to work hard to get the best for the people of Edmonton.


Trustee

I am Chairman and a Trustee at a multi-academy trust which has two schools. Ashmole Academy Trust was set up to extend the outreach of excellent education to more children. I, with the Trust Board set the strategic direction of the Trust and have plans for a nursery and summer school in addition to increasing the number of schools in the Trust.


Ashmole Academy Trust

Ashmole Academy became a multi-academy trust in 2016 to create a primary school. I have worked hard with Ashmole Academy and the local community to make the primary school concept a reality. I am delighted that Ashmole Primary School opened its doors to 60 Reception aged children in September 2016 following my campaign.

Text from a post I wrote on 12th January 2018:

I visited Ashmole Primary School today for a meeting on the permanent school building and it bought home to me the enormity of what has been achieved by dedicated members of the Ashmole team, my campaigner group and me!
 
Ashmole Primary School’s permanent building is a building site but by the end of this year it will be ready for children to move in. When I started this campaign I never believed that I would be part of the team that founded a brand new school! The road I traveled to get to this point has been full of challenges, of highs and lows but perseverance, determination and a stubborn resolution to have a new school made me carry on. There is one real reward that I have from this campaign and that was the hug from a crying mum on the opening day of the school. Her tears were of happiness, telling me that I had changed her, and her family’s life! I will never forget that moment and as I write this I am moved again.
 
The campaign started in 2012 from my front room. A group of community minded parents and grandparents who lived in an area that didn’t fall into any primary school catchment area decided to campaign for increased primary school provision. We each paid £10 to produce 2000 leaflets to distribute in the area letting residents know of the problem with school places and to gain support.
 
That was the beginning of SWEAT, the South West Enfield Action Team. We worked hard using our website https://wewantlocalschools.wordpress.com/home-2/ to get our message out there. We lobbied the Council, we went to the local press, we met our MP, we spoke to Councillors, we tried everything to raise awareness. I hated the way that Labour Councillors treated our problem as part of their political game, they didn’t care about us, we were a community group that could be exploited. The Labour Cabinet Member for Education called me naive for thinking I could do anything about school places, in a public meeting after I had spoken so that I was unable to respond. Political point scoring! But I did it! Despite what the Labour Cabinet Member for Education thought.
 
I used my influence and position as a school governor at Ashmole Academy to pursue a dream that has resulted in the building site pictured. One of the biggest disappointments for the Ashmole team was when our first free school bid failed! I felt that I had let down all those parents who had become wrapped in my enthusiasm and we can do it attitude … we had failed! I was bitterly disappointed…. it wasn’t a failure, it was a setback! Once we got over the disappointment, the Ashmole team took on board the feedback from the Department for Education and we submitted another, much improved free school bid and we were successful! I was so happy, not for me as my children would not get into the school but for all those parents who could send their children to an outstanding local school.
 
I am delighted that some of my fellow campaigners have gone on to become school governors and trustees.
 
My message is that if you see an injustice and if you feel strongly enough about it, others will feel the same and follow you. You can do anything if you put your mind to it! Ignore the nay sayers!
 
To find out more about Ashmole, SWEAT and myself visit:

Conservative Outreach

I am an executive director of Conservative Friends of Turkey and work with the Friend’s group to outreach to ethnic communities. I have been a Conservative ambassador by delivering training to women candidates abroad and in Summer 2017 represented the Conservative party undertaking charity work in Rwanda. I provided campaign training to candidates standing for election in Bosnia and Herzegovina.


Working Mother

I am a working mother of young children and have been in employment since leaving further education with breaks for bringing up young children.

My career has been in technical engineering and I am proud to have had a fulfilling career in an environment that is male dominated. There are many women who work in Information Technology but there are very few women working in the technical aspect and my experience is that I have always been the only woman working among men.

I work hard for my family and lead by example. I want my children to grow up knowing that they must have a career and job and to support their local community.


Chair of Governors

I am Chair of Governors of Ashmole Primary School, a free school that I campaigned and created with the Ashmole team. I was a governor at Ashmole Academy for 13 years and Chair of Governors for 3 years, Ashmole Academy is a non-selective community secondary school rated as outstanding by OFSTED. The Ashmole motto is “Excellence is a habit” and we aim for every child to reach their potential and get the best start in life.


General Election 2015/17

I was privileged to have been selected by Edmonton Conservatives to represent them as their parliamentary candidate in the 2015 & 2017 general elections. I am honoured to have been asked to remain active in the Edmonton Conservative association in the future. I will do my utmost to improve the Edmonton community through campaigning and lobbying for improvements in services and facilities.


About Me

I am a hard working wife and mum with a career in technology. I am on the Conservative Party’s Approved list of Parliamentary Candidates to fight a constituency seat in the next General Election. I was the Conservative Party’s Parliamentary Candidate in the 2015 and 2017 General Elections in Edmonton, North London.

I am Chairman of Ashmole Academy Trust Board and Chairman of Ashmole Primary School. I created and led a parental pressure group which campaigned for a new primary school and which I went on to open after 5 years. 180 children are now receiving an outstanding education and the project has brought a £7.5mn investment in to the local area by the building of a new school along with the creation of new jobs. I have volunteered in my community for over 15 years with successful outcomes.

I am the Conservative Women’s Organisation London Regional Chairman and I actively support women into public life. I hold CWO campaigning activities to introduce women into political life, for example debating and campaigning sessions. I hold fundraising activities attended by Ministers, MPs and Ambassadors to donate funds to women standing for public office.

I created an action group the South West Enfield Action Team (SWEAT) which I chaired to campaign for increased primary school provision. The Local Schools for Local Children campaign brought about change for the local community with intentions to create two new primary schools. These were meant to occur in 2014 and 2015, the reality is that the local authority did not live up to their promises and the only school that has opened is the one I influenced as a governor at Ashmole Academy.

My expertise is in technology and my interest is education. I have been employed since leaving further education and have a full career in Technical Engineering. I have worked at the Bank of England for over 10 years, the Houses of Parliament for 5 years, local government for over 6 years, as well as the private sector. I am currently employed by the Greater London Authority.

I come from an ethnic background and I am second generation immigrant as a result of my parents fleeing the problems in Cyprus in 1960.