Paul Blomfield MP

A strong voice for Sheffield Central

Keeping in touch - October 2016

Paul Blomfield, MP for Sheffield Central
Keeping in touch - October 2016


It’s been another busy month in and out of Parliament. My annual community consultation, The Big Conversation, ended on 8th October and since then I’ve taken on a new role as a Shadow Minister in Labour's Brexit team, been on the committee debating the Higher Education Bill, and much else besides. If you haven’t yet completed my Big Conversation survey, do take two minutes to share your views.


Shadow Brexit Minister


I’ve taken on a new role as a Shadow Minister for Exiting the European Union, part of Labour’s team holding the Government to account as it negotiates Brexit. Last week I led for Labour’s frontbench in a debate pressing the Government to give EU nationals in the UK the right to stay (watch here) and I challenged Ministers on the issue at oral questions.   


The Big Conversation


My thanks to the 1000+ people who came to 40 events, across the constituency, and shared their concerns on a wide range of topics. I’ve already taken up some of the issues raised by:

  • Meeting the new Chief Constable to discuss anti-social behaviour
  • Arranging a meeting with the NHS Clinical Commissioning Group on mental health
  • Challenging the Government over tackling hate crime
  • Questioning the Government on protecting pensions post-Brexit
  • Pressing the Government on whether council alcohol licensing powers are adequate to address some of the issues we face in the city centre

A full report about The Big Conversation and how I’m acting on your concerns will be published in November. In the meantime please fill in my survey, which is open until the end of October. 

Higher Education Bill               

My work on the Committee scrutinising the Higher Education Bill line-by-line has been a big part of the last two months. I have been challenging the Government on the new Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) and making the case against linking the TEF with tuition fee increases. I’ve also pressed on widening participation and proposed changes to enable fairer access for refugees. Read more.

Raising £1300 to tackle homelessness


I took part in a sponsored walk with three members of my staff team, raising nearly £1300 for Sheffield homeless charity The Cathedral Archer Project. Thanks to everyone who supported us! If you missed out, you can still donate.

International Students

I spoke out against the new Home Secretary Amber Rudd’s crackdown on international students announced at Tory Party Conference. As Co-Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on International Students I’ll be doing a lot more work on the issue. Read more.

Campaigning against grammar schools


I spoke at a rally launching Labour’s campaign in Sheffield against the Government’s proposals to reintroduce grammar schools. People raised concerns about the proposals at several Big Conversation events. Watch my interview about the issue.

Better mental health  

Mental health was one of the big concerns raised during the Big Conversation. This month I spoke at a conference on the voluntary sector’s work on mental health, joined the panel for a debate on student mental health at Labour’s annual conference, and in Westminster launched the Sheffield University’s School of Health and Related Research’s (ScHARR) new measure of quality of life and recovery in people with mental health problems.

Move Parliament to Sheffield


I pressed for Parliament to move to Sheffield while Westminster is repaired, as part of my campaign to get Government offices into the regions. Read more.



Get in touch




You can still fill in my Big Conversation survey until the end of the month. 

Chairing the Labour Campaign for Electoral Reform

As a long-standing supporter of a more proportional electoral system, I’m delighted to have been elected Chair of the Labour Campaign for Electoral Reform. 

My fears on pharmacy cuts


I challenged Government Ministers over plans to cut funding for community pharmacies. Read more.

Sheffield Climate Alliance

I spoke at a Sheffield Climate Alliance event on campaigning for action on climate change. I’m a strong supporter of the Alliance – see more about their work



I backed the Tuberous Sclerosis Association’s #Fight4Treatment campaign, urging the NHS to fund lifesaving drug Everolimus to treat brain tumours, and supported their event in Parliament with actor David Suchet. 

Antisocial behaviour

In response to growing concerns about antisocial behaviour in parts of the city centre, I visited affected areas with local police, discussing action to tackle the problem. I have also taken it up with the Government as I'm concerned local Councillors don't have adequate powers to deal with the issues.

SYAC conference

I spoke at the 25th anniversary conference of the South Yorkshire African Caribbean Business and Enterprise Training Centre on opportunities for setting up small businesses.


In the Hot Seat with Rony Robinson

I’ll be in the ‘Hot Seat’ on BBC Radio Sheffield at 11am on the 4th November. Be sure to tune in and ring up to put me on the spot! 

Community notices ...

Art Group for people with a brain injury -  This is a 6 week art course run by two art therapists for anyone with a brain injury. 4th November – 9 December, 1 – 3 pm at The Art House, 8 Backfields, Sheffield, S1 4HJ. Please book at or for more info 0113 245 3304 or Email:

I, Daniel Blake film screening and discussion – On Friday 28th October the Showroom Workstation is screening Ken Loach’s Palme D’Or winning film I, Daniel Blake, with a Q&A involving cast member Kate Rutter, Sheffield Council’s Jackie Drayton and others. Find out more here.

Vote for Learn for Life! - A great social enterprise and community hub, Learn for Life, has been shortlisted for the Aviva Community Fund 2016 competition. Join me in voting for them to win £10,000. Find out more here.

Sexpectations? – An inclusive, interactive, non-judgmental & fun event for young people about sexualities and relationships. Tuesday 8th November 4.15 – 6.15pm (for young people aged 16-18) and 6.30 – 8pm (for over 18s) at the Common Room (above the Forum Bar in the city centre). Find out more here

Keeping in touch

My office is open every weekday, except Friday 28th October, and if you have any questions or need any help please ring 0114 272 2882 or email me.

Best wishes,






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