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I mentioned last month that one of the highlights for 2016 will be the celebrations for HM The Queens 90th Birthday.  A fantastic initiative to help clean up the country for these celebrations is the ”Clean for The Queen” weekend.  This project aims to inspire a million people to take action and enjoy a few hours together litter picking and making the areas we live in more beautiful.  If you know of any individuals or organisations that could help with the events that are taking place between 4th and 6th March please contact www.cleanforthequeen.co.uk

It always gives me great pleasure when I come across ways to encourage and inspire young people.  BAFTA are looking for entries to its 2016 Young Games Designer’s competition, which gives young people a chance to make and design their own game.  The winners will be announced at a special awards ceremony in July, attended by stars of the gaming world. If you or, anyone you know, is keen on gaming entries are now open at www.bafta.org/ygd

Another scheme aimed specifically at young people is being offered by GLL who operate most of the Leisure Centres in the constituency.  They are giving out grants of up to £1,250 to help young sports stars with their development.  GLL are inviting new applicants from young people under the age of 21, any individual can apply and any sports club or community group that have members that could take advantage of this grant can find the details at www.gllsportsfoundation.org/

This month my mailbag has been dominated by emails and letters about food waste, in particular on UK farms. I know that my ministerial colleagues have been working with charities on how best to prevent this, with one option being to encourage retailers to agree in advance to purchase the whole crop from a specific farm or field, then decide how each vegetable is used based on their size and appearance. This would help ensure vegetables aren’t wasted just because they look unusual. The Government also continues to work closely with industry to help forge closer links with redistribution charities across the whole supply chain. It’s is simply wrong that anyone should go hungry at the same time as surplus food is going to waste.

Other matters that have been raised this month include issues around the use of wild animals in circuses and the BBC’s Charter Review period.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any pressing issues that you would like help with.  Either myself or one of my team will get back to you as soon as possible and do what we can to assist. You can contact me on any matter at the House of Commons, SW1A 0AA, 020 7219 6350 or dicksonce@parliament.uk.  Email is the quickest and most reliable way to get in touch, as I keep a very close eye on my emails and can reply very quickly.   I also send out occasional general interest emails about developments in the Wantage and Didcot Constituency. If you would like to be added to the distribution list, please do email my office at badyaljb@parliament.uk or sign up at www.vaizey.com.

Ed Vaizey MP