I am very conscious that today should have been the day we celebrated VE Day with street parties and a special bank holiday, and yet we are all still socially distancing and all the days are very much merging into one another. However it is still a good day to separately celebrate and I have seen some great initiatives around virtual street parties and making Union Flags from old Aldi bags with bunting in short supply.

This week I have made my fortnightly visit to Westminster, to participate in Women and Equalities Oral Questions on Wednesday, asking about the data needed to establish not just the how and why of BAME communities being disproportionately impacted by Covid-19, but also what Ministers are planning to do to protect them. Later in the afternoon I chaired the latest evidence session as part of the W&E Covid Inquiry, where I had the opportunity to pose questions about the data on the same issue to professors and statisticians.

With the prospect of lockdown coming to an end we are seeing pressure to enable some normal activities to resume earlier than others. The efforts to get household waste recycling centres open have now come to fruition, but there are also pressures to allow some leisure activities to resume. I absolutely concur with those keen anglers who have been in touch describing their activity as the ultimate expression of social distancing, but we also have to work out how we can get children out playing and taking part in sport in a safe way. I have no doubt there are many challenges ahead, but am appreciative of all those correspondents who have highlighted the ways things could happen safely in the relatively near future.

Rt Hon Caroline Nokes MP

Member of Parliament for Romsey and Southampton North