Painting Horsham Bright

It was lovely to see local artist Sarah Duffield’s work on display at Horsham Museum. Commissioned, as part of the Horsham District Year of Culture, to paint scenes from around the District; Sarah’s vibrant works include a view towards Chanctonbury Hill, towards the Downs from near Rudgwick and St Mary’s Church, Horsham from Chesworth Farm. Another exhibition in the Museum as part of the HDYC is “The History of the Horsham District in 100 Objects”- closing this month and worth the visit.

On Friday I met Tom Crowley, Chairman of GATCOM. Whilst not directly part of GATCOM’s remit we discussed Gatwick’s proposed expansion plans on which many residents have voiced entirely legitimate concerns. This process remains at an early stage and will continue to receive very close scrutiny.

I also met Dr Coutroubis, the new Clinical Director for Horsham and Mid Sussex Clinical Commissioning Group, at The Village Surgery in Southwater to discuss the important work of our local GP network.  Locally, our practices are performing above the national average in the latest patient surveys for satisfaction with appointments offered and the choice of appointment offered.  Increased access arrangements also mean appointments are possible (though not necessarily with one’s own GP) up to 8pm on weekday evenings and on Saturday mornings. More healthcare professional resources are also being made available to the local network freeing up GP time to concentrate on patients with complex concerns. Nationally, we have a record number of GPs in training (up to 10 percent on last year). Whilst there is of course a lead time it is vital that we continue to recruit to enable the service to expand.

This week is “Baby Loss Awareness” week and for the second time in two weeks the Commons produced an excellent, thoughtful debate (last week the debate on the Government’s Bill tackling Domestic Abuse was similarly constructive).  The NHS is safest place in the world to give birth but it remains the case that 15 babies a day are stillborn or die soon after birth, the heart-rending loss in these circumstances has a devastating impact.  We are making progress – it was 17 babies a day five years ago – and through ongoing research we are all committed to further progress as well as support for those who go through this trauma.  


Photo Credit: Jeremy Quin was delighted to see Sarah Duffield at the exhibition of her depictions of the Horsham District, as part of the Year of Culture, at the Horsham Museum.  Featuring in the photograph is the view of St Mary’s from Chesworth Farm.