Westminster News

Minister officially launches Ten Tors Challenge

Rayleigh and Wickford MP and Armed Forces Minister, Mark Francois officially launched the Ten Tors Challenge on Dartmoor recently, which is a test of navigation skills and endurance for young people. During the challenge, competitors have to visit ten tors on Dartmoor, within 34 hours, in some cases travelling distances of 55 miles.

Minister visits the Marines

Rayleigh and Wickford MP and Armed Forces Minister, Mark Francois, spent a day in Plymouth recently, visiting Three Commando Brigade Royal Marines. The Brigade, who form one of Britain’s elite rapid intervention forces, are headquartered in the Plymouth area and, as part of his ministerial duties, Mark was given briefings on the Brigades’ amphibious and wider military capabilities.

Minister thanks British troops on UN duty in Cyprus

Rayleigh and Wickford MP and Armed Forces Minister, Mark Francois, recently paid a brief visit to Cyprus in order to meet British troops who are serving on the Island, as part of the United Nations Peacekeeping Force. Whist there Mark was given a tour of parts of the "Green Line" which separates the Republic of Cyprus from the Turkish occupied area in the North of the Island. Mark walked along the "no man’s land" area in the capital of Nicosia, which has remained unoccupied since the Turkish invasion in 1974.

MP gets out on the water with the Royal Engineers

Rayleigh and Wickford MP and Armed Forces Minister, Mark Francois recently paid a visit to the home of the Royal Engineers in Chatham, Kent, where he had a chance to get out on the River Medway with the Royal Engineers Maritime Unit.

Minister meets head of award winning charity “Scotty’s Little Soldiers”

Rayleigh and Wickford MP, Mark Francois, who is also Veterans Minister at the MOD, recently held a meeting in his office with Nikki Scott, the founder of award winning charity “Scotty’s Little Soldiers” which helps to support the children of service personnel who have fallen in the line of duty.

Minister views one of the world’s oldest Spitfires

Rayleigh and Wickford MP, Mark Francois, was shown one of the oldest surviving Spitfires in the world when he paid a recent visit to the Royal Air Force Museum (North) at RAF Cosford in Shropshire.

MP helps stir it – with the Chelsea Pensioners

Rayleigh and Wickford MP, Mark Francois, recently visited the Royal Hospital Chelsea to participate in the traditional ceremony of “stirring the Christmas Pudding”, which is prepared every year for the famous Chelsea Pensioners.

MP praises medical heroes at ‘the Millies’

Rayleigh and Wickford MP, Mark Francois, recently praised medical staff from the Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre at Headley Court, when he met them whilst attending the Sun’s Military Awards (“the Millies”) at the Imperial War Museum in London.