An Open Letter to Darren Henry

Dear Darren

I hope you are well at this time of crisis.

I know this is not the only email you will receive today. I know many people across Broxtowe, including many who lent you there vote in December, will either have taken time last night or on this beautiful Bank Holiday to express their feelings of disappointment and anger at you and your party, notably the Prime Minister and his advisor, Dominic Cummings.

I do not need to reiterate the reasons in any great detail: I am sure you are more than aware of them. The facts remain the same: Cummings flouted the Government’s own guidelines on the lockdown, and put lives at risk. The lockdown rules were very clear – I was very supportive of the clarity of the government message at the time – you stay at home, you stay in your primary residence, you do not travel to a vulnerable relative’s house. You do everything you can to minimise the risk of the virus spreading. You seek local help and you look after others if able.

I have seen the tremendous fortitude displayed by people nationwide, as well as closer to home. You will be aware that your constituency is neighbours with one of Europe’s largest teaching hospitals, and thus many in Beeston and the wider Broxtowe area are employed there. I have heard there sacrifices. I have heard the stories of clinicians and carers isolating from their family to reduce the risk of infection.

Many, myself included, did everything we can to provide for those less fortunate: we set up mutual aid groups, we organised , street by street, to look after others. We collated together useful information and made sure that every single person who asked for help received help. We did this because it was the right thing to do. To quote your leader “There is such thing as society”.

I have heard the stories of parents dying without their children being able to hold their hand as they pass. I have been reduced to tears at the stories of infants dying, alone and surrounded by strangers, and their absolute heartbreak at not even being able to attend the funeral. A bus driver here in the Rylands, a lovely young man who was due to get engaged this year, died early in the crisis, doing his job. We will not know for some time how many care-workers, how many nurses, how many people who selflessly put their life on the line for others have died during the crisis. Each one is a story of heroism.

Last night, your leader Boris Johnson, laughed in their faces. He told them that these sacrifices, these acts of selflessness and goodness, these displays of the best side of people’s characters, they were all for nought. He told them that they were bad parents, they were not instinctive, that they were stupid to interpret the lockdown rules rather read them clearly and act appropriately.

I know you will respond, if you do respond, in a pat manner with attempts to ‘move things along’. You’ll probably say the subject is too complex for us non-elites to understand, albeit in not so many words. You will parrot Johnson. You will ignore your own conscience which must grate at such injustice.

I ask you to not do that.

When you were elected to represent us, you swore an oath to be Broxtowe’s voice in Westminster. I was prepared to give you the benefit of the doubt. There has been scant evidence of this of late, and a failure to address this issue will further reinforce the burgeoning view of constituents of all political hues and none that you are not concerned with their representation, solely with your own career progression.

If this is the case, it is my duty as a constituent to institute a recall petition so we can find somebody who truly can be a voice for Broxtowe, not a mouthpiece for the Government.

Kind Regards

Matt Turpin

ps: For added clarity and in the spirit of transparency can you tell us where you have been spending lockdown?

9 thoughts on “An Open Letter to Darren Henry

  1. Simon Cross says:

    Nicely put.

  2. Amy says:

    Thank you Matt.

  3. stevekateames@aol.com says:

    Very well expressed, Matt.I felt incredibly angry listening to Boris’ press conference yesterday and rema

  4. Peter Kobryn says:

    Sent my own letter to our MP about an hour ago – will be very interested to see if I get a reply, quality of said reply and also what reply you receive

  5. Michael says:

    I am a NHS worker and I have worked every day and stuck by the rules, put my life on the line. I do not think that a letter to our so called MP is worth my time, have not heard from him at all.

  6. Dick Chamberlain says:

    Standing by to sign the petition.

  7. George Paechter says:

    I fully support your letter. George Paechter.

  8. Andy Mann says:

    Well written Matt. Fair play and hats off to the Conservative MPs who have shown a sense of decency by calling for Cummings to resign or be sacked. I should like to see the current MP for Broxtowe follow their example. The behaviour of Johnson & Cummings is already having an effect in this constituency: There has been a noticeable increase in the number of households blatantly disregarding restrictions by hosting visitors to barbecues etc. Many of them had several cars belonging to said visitors outside their houses.

    If Mr Henry does not set the example for decency and fairness to all, then I look forward to your petition for the recall of an MP who would not be fit to represent this constituency.

  9. Ry Lander says:

    A couple of things, whilst I am not a tory I did “lend” my vote to them. And Mr Henry does seem to have been quiet, but as I found out the other week, perhaps he is not so much of a publicity seeker that our previous “MP” was. After the recent appalling commercial terrorist act on one of our community butchers (Meat 4U) Mr Henry contacted them to offer advice and assistance. Did we hear about that? I only did because I heard it from one of the owners. Can you imagine the press campaign that would have followed our last MP’s offer of assistance? Point 2 – Cummings. I agree he should go – but there are a few on Labour’s side and possibly others that should do the same. And yes, whilst many of us plebs have done our best at this time, there are many many more “plebier” plebs that have stuck two fingers up at us and in clear vision with a total lack of shame or decency, flouted the rules, demonstrating what a selfish and greedy society we all belong to. Yes, there has been acts of kindness and community spirit, but equally the opposite. Stay safe all – please don’t be dragged into a media parlour game. As for the threat of a recall, I do not believe that this is an adequate reason or time. Strictly my opinion – and I trust you are all staying safe and well.

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