Writing to your MP
Why Write? -
To educate them about what is happening and give them opportunity to do something about it. It increases your likelihood of receiving a response and to forward your concerns to the relevant Minister. In turn, the Minister is obliged by Parliamentary convention to respond to letters from an MP.
Why not give you a Template? -
MPs and researchers confirm that an original letter sent by one committed, passionate constituent is far more powerful that a pile of identical letters or postcards. Mass template letters have less impact because the MP knows that they only take a few seconds to complete and are not necessarily representative of the priorities of their constituents. Taking the time to craft a personalised and well-informed letter demonstrates that you are a constituent that cares deeply about the issue so your options are going to be taken more seriously.
Handwritten or email? -
Some MPs are happy to correspond with constituents via email, whereas others give a preference to hand written or printed out individual letters arriving in the post. Decide what works for you.
Note when your MP is not in Westminster, the post is automatically forwarded on to them. The best postal address is their Westminster address ...
Sarah Dines, MP
House of Commons
London SW1A 0AA
Writing Tips -
Check the correct title for your MP - use the website www.parliament.uk
Be succinct, aim for no more than one and a half sides of A4 handwritten and one side if printed.
Focus on a main issue for you - disturbance to the ecological balance in the Dale; or impact on the community of Cressbrook because of increased traffic flow, over stretched parking and influx of a closed group.
Structure the content -
1. Introduce yourself (if you haven't written before) share why you care about this issue. Give acknowledgement if your MP has already spoken out on similar issues or shares your interest in the environment. You can check this on the website www.theyworkforyou.com which gives details on MP voting record.
2. Get your MP's attention with a dramatic fact or short statement.
3. State the problem and how potentially serious it could be (on the Dale or on the village).
4. Inform your MP of the long term solution - compulsory purchase order. You can refer to the purchase of Brosterfield near Foolow if you know the details. (Land was bought by the Peak Park following a public appeal for contributions).
5. Say what you want them to do about it. (Refer to or lobby relevant Minister, assert direct pressure on Natural England and Peak Park...)