Last week’s Column was drafted before the appalling tragedy of Grenfell Tower, and so must have seemed unfeeling to some readers. What can anyone say about it? The sheer horror of being stuck on those upper floors is the stuff of nightmares; and the losses and hardship of survivors and the bereaved are appalling. We must all do what little we can to help – and I salute the Malmesbury Fire Station who are washing cars to raise funds. Societies truly come together at times like these to give each other help and support and love.
How sad it therefore is that a mad and bad man should think it some kind of duty to drive his van into peaceful Moslems leaving the Mosque as they break their Ramadan Fast. What kind of lunatic must he be to do such a thing? The Imam acted swiftly and well to stop any kind of immediate backlash. At times like these, we must come together, not force ourselves apart.
Negotiations with the DUP about forming some kind of alliance (which does not imply that we necessarily accept their social values which are at odds with our own); the start of the Brexit negotiations, the drafting of the Queen’s Speech to cover a two year Parliament – The PM’s In-tray is overflowing. And that is without touching on Mr Trump and his troubles, on Qatar, Mosul, Raqqa, Russia and a thousand other vitally important matters any of which could explode at a moment’s notice. Who would want to be PM? I would not do it for a Million pounds.
Two general elections, Brexit referendum, Trump, terrorist outrages, Grenfell Tower and so much else has left us all deeply weary. We need a period of peace and stability; of certainty and hope for the future. That is why I strongly support Mrs May’s efforts to refloat the Ship of State, to get life back to normal, to dampen down fires. Steady as She Goes. One thing we really do not need for now is any kind of leadership challenge or other seismic disturbance. Let’s get through to the Summer, get Parliament going, settle our frayed nerves, start to mend our fractured society. Now is not the time for any more excitements.
So I will be doing what I believe the electorate of North Wilts would want - that peace and quiet, stability and hope for the future. I will not be taking part in plots or gossip, which are rife in Parliament. I will be doing what I can round North Wiltshire (20 or 30 engagements since the Election so far), re-establishing my chairmanships, and my defence and polar interests in Parliament, and taking an active part in every aspect of Parliamentary life. But I will be rocking no boats. Call me dull, if you like, but that is my interpretation of what my electorate want, and also what is good for the country - a period of boredom would do us all a lot of good.