Today I welcomed Help the Heroes campaigner Christian Nock to Parliament.
A former soldier, Christian has been walking the British coastline to raise money for Help the Heroes. He has been campaigning to draw attention to the plight of homeless ex soldiers. He started on 8th August 2012 from Blackpool, has so far walked 7 times the distance of Land's End to John O'Groats and raised over £50,000, sleeping rough along the way.
Christian walked through Dover and Deal last month and I was inspired to ask him to visit me in Parliament as I was so moved by what he is doing. Christian arrived with his supporters and representatives from forces charities, and we were joined over coffee by other MPs who wanted to congratulate Christian and pledge their support.
We heard about how hard life can be for former soldiers. Many find it hard to adjust to civilian life and homelessness is a problem for many. Christian's walk and his campaign has done so much to draw attention to the issue. It was such an inspiring meeting and I hope people will continue to welcome Christian as he continues his journey around the country.
I am pictured above with Christian and L to R fellow MPs Penny Mordaunt, David Rutley, and Tom Brake.
Today I joined Ken and Jean Buxey from the Deal and Walmer Lions as they were collecting for the NSPCC. The Lions are an international network of volunteers who give their time for charitable causes and to help their communities.
I heard from Ken and Jean how people give very generously in Deal for the many charities the Lions collect for. I was really pleased to be able to spend time with them and make a donation myself. Many congratulations to Ken and Jean for all their years of dedication to the cause.
Deal is a town of culture, with an incredible artistic heritage that has been built on by current residents to create a haven for those in the arts.
Today I visited the most recent addition to the town's arts scene - an exhibition by local artists Penny Bearman and Audrey Roethenbaugh at the Landmark Centre. The paintings were beautiful and I hope that residents and visitors alike will visit to see Deal at its finest. The exhibition continues through April and May.
The more we can make of our art and culture the more we will increase visitors and tourism. We should all be hugely optimistic about the future of our wonderful town.
Every year Breakthrough Breast Cancer encourages its supporters to organise local walks across the country to raise funds for the amazing work it does.
In Deal Kerry Rubins is the driving force behind our walk, and this year was her fifth time organising the event.
The walkers – including cancer survivors and those whose lives have been touched by cancer – set off from the castle to walk along to St Margaret's for their midpoint lunch, where I was able to join them and offer my support. There was a huge turnout, and it was a really powerful show of solidarity for all those who have suffered because of breast cancer.
I am pictured on the left with the organiser Kerry, and Gavin Oakley of the White Cliffs Hotel, who provided the lunch.
Thanks to the heavy winter we've experienced our coastal defences have been even more tested than usual. Worryingly this has resulted in the sea wall at Kingsdown being breached. The damage is extensive and DDC and the Environment Agency are working together to secure emergency funding to repair this asap.
I went down to Oldstairs Bay this morning to inspect the damage for myself. I have been speaking with the EA and Defra and will continue to press for not just remedial works, but action to ensure the wall is made good in the long term.
Today I was proud to open the Craft Fair at the Landmark Centre to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the K&C Breast Cancer Club.
The fundraising the group do is amazing and makes a real difference to medical care. Just as important - if not more so - is the care and support the group have provided to cancer sufferers over 25 years. It was wonderful to be able to show my support for the work that all their volunteers have done over the years.
There was drama at St Margaret's this week when a large section of the iconic cliff face collapsed. I took the picture on the right from the beach, and you can see how much fell away.
Luckily no-one was injured, though I was little worried when I heard that a bench and part of the cliff top path had been destroyed in the fall.
The RNLI are such an important charity that our seafaring community relies on day after day. I have always been a huge supporter of the work of the RNLI and all those who give their time up to train recruits, be constantly on call, and save lives.
I wanted to join the crew to see firsthand the work they do, and experience the conditions on the boat and out in the channel. It might have been snowing (and freezing!) but this doesn't stop the RNLI – they still have to do their job, and this morning I was their newest recruit.
From Dover lifeboat station we headed out to sea, visiting the Varne Bank (a 5mile long sand bank off the coast of Dover), and were out for about two and a half hours before we reached dry land again. And as a keen sailor in my spare time I even got to steer the boat - and managed to escape without any seasickness.
The pictures show me with the crew – I would like to thank them all for all they do, and for making me feel so welcome.
Today I met with the Dover branch of Christian Aid, led by the Rev Michael Hinton.
We discussed how to crackdown on international tax avoidance – a concern that we all share – and help for developing nations.
As always we had a very interesting discussion and it was useful to hear everyone's concerns.
The East Kent Railway is a real hidden gem nestled in the heart of our constituency. It's a great place to visit, and I've been able to go along on previous occasions with my kids, who loved their day out!
Today I joined for a very special day celebrating 100 years of the East Kent Railway. Guests were taken by the train and a vintage bus along to Elvington Community Centre, where the Elvington & Eythorne Heritage Centre was formally opened and we had a presentation of the East Kent Railway Steam Project.
Afterwards we enjoyed a miner's banquet, before heading back to the station to look at the St Dunstan and learn more about the EKR history.
The organisers did an amazing job, and I had a fantastic time. In the centenary year I hope that even more people will make the trip to learn about the railways and mining history of our area.
Here you can read about local news matters and what I've been up to. You can make comments too. I'd welcome your feedback, so please do feel free to comment!
Donate or join up to Charlie's campaign by clicking here.