The Stroud MP's weekly column.

Issues surrounding the coronavirus are understandably dominating our thoughts at the moment. While Gloucestershire is thankfully not currently experiencing high numbers of confirmed cases of the virus, we know that this may change. Indeed, we are preparing for all eventualities.

I am in regular touch with Ministers and senior members of the District and County Council. The Gloucestershire Health authorities are working closely with all MPs in the county and my team will help to co-ordinate volunteer work within the communities. Most importantly, we will continue to support residents directly about health queries or casework.

A lively budget also took place last week. As a brief overview, it formed two parts. Firstly, to provide reassurance that the health services will have whatever they need to tackle coronavirus, together with a series of measures to support individuals and businesses.

Secondly, the budget focused on people living and working across the country. An increase to the National Living Wage and the National Insurance threshold so people can keep more of their hard earned money. Additional business rates relief is very welcome for our pubs and high streets.

Investment in infrastructure like improving the A417 Air Balloon roundabout, rail networks, bus transport, the NHS and a boost for public services across the region. We are also ensuring the South West receives its share of funding for flood defences.

There were a raft of green measures including for electric vehicles. Further Education is to receive a significant investment of £1.5bn over 5 years, which I am pleased about after all my campaigning. Local council elections have been postponed for one year and canvassing will not take place in the current climate.