IT’S BEEN a busy few weeks in Parliament, with many debates about the Brexit process.

In my contribution in the Commons, I made it clear that I respect the result and that I would vote to trigger Article 50. I fear the debate was needlessly curtailed and still too dominated by the pro- and anti-EU camps shouting at each other, rather than seeing how we can work together sensibly to move forwards. But now Article 50 has passed through the Commons, my priority is looking at how the Government handles the negotiations.

Do they have an effective strategy that puts the interest of the people I represent first? The people of Torfaen and across the UK, whether they individually voted to leave or remain, deserve a coherent and effective plan from the Government.

A central priority for me is the protection of the jobs we have in Torfaen that are reliant on our trade with other European countries. I will be playing my full part in Parliament to scrutinise the Government robustly, as their actions will have enormous ramifications for the future of our country.

I will want to ensure that we retain our environmental and consumer protections, and, crucially, workers’ rights. As I said in the Chamber, nobody who voted remain or leave voted for the country to be poorer.

It is for the government to secure the best deal for the UK, and a prosperous future - I will be standing up for the interests of Torfaen in the crucial years ahead.

Of course, Parliament has not just debated Brexit. I’ve raised issues ranging from the relocation of jobs from the Department for Work & Pensions Office in Cwmbran to the Severn Tolls.

I’ve raised the great work of local bands, including my home-town Blaenavon Band, and emphasised the importance of affordable music lessons. In my role as chairman of the All-Party Group on Industrial Heritage, I have started work producing a report on how we best utilise our industrial heritage.

I also helped promote World Cancer Day, focusing on my campaign to make repurposed drugs more widely available.

MP’s local role is so important alongside contributing in Westminster. On February 6, I joined with many other to pay my respects to the 176 men and boys who died at Llanerch Colliery on that day in 1890.

It was great to see such strong support from the local community, as reported in the South Wales Argus. Our local history is something we should keep alive from generation to generation, so that we remember the sacrifices of those who came before us.