LETTER: Long-standing MP is no beast

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I recently made one of my infrequent trips to Chesterfield’s Pomegranate Theatre to watch the biopic ‘Dennis Skinner The Nature of the Beast’, a film about the life and times of one of our local MPs who has represented Bolsover and district for more than 40 years.

It was a fascinating insight into the life Dennis has led throughout his 85 years.

The film showed that he is fully committed to promoting his brand of socialism to the world at large.

He is certainly not a ‘beast’, on the contrary he is shown to be a very caring man who regularly goes the extra mile to speak up for those in need.

The majority of his constituents have backed him at every general election since the day in the 1970s when he hung up his pit boots and hard hat to enter the place he often calls the ‘Palace of Varieties’ aka the House of Commons.

Dennis is one of a dwindling band of working class men in Parliament. He has established a strong bond with the voters in his patch, mainly due to the fact that he was spent all his life in North Derbyshire. In a nutshell he is ‘one of them’, in tune with the hopes, aspirations and concerns of his local community.

In my opinion our leading political parties of all colours should seek to select a local person to stand for election wherever possible.

Places like Mansfield are unique, making it difficult for outsiders to tune in to how we form our opinions on things, both personal and public. I urge anyone interested in politics to catch this film.

It shows that Dennis is a one-off who has contributed much to British politics. It is strange that it has not been screened in Mansfield, which is, after all, the nearest town to Bolsover isn’t it?

I note that the Dennis’s website invites community groups to show the film. Surely there is an enterprising organisation locally who would be keen to screen it. I think it would attract a big audience.

Andrew Stafford