HERE is the weekly column from MP Simon Fell.

My week began in a highly unusual fashion, walking through the gate of Wormwood Scrubs Prison to meet its excellent Governor, Amy Frost, and her team.

They discussed with me my forthcoming Offenders (Day Release from Detention) Bill which is being put forward on Friday (2 December).

I heard in detail the experience of a UK prisoner who’s released on a Friday, especially for those with no family or supportive friend waiting for them. It was a bleak conversation, adding considerably to my understanding.

My Bill is designed to give prisons leeway to release vulnerable prisoners 48 hours early. This would stop them being sent out at 3 pm on a Friday with a long list of people they need to make appointments to see (with very little chance of doing so) before the weekend.  

This change to the law would give homeless prisoners a fighting chance of securing a safe bed, those with addictions of being able to visit a pharmacy, and would prevent those living in rural areas being marooned with no hope of securing transport to see their probation officer.

(When the latter happens now, it means that they are in breach of their release conditions and could technically be returned to prison, through no fault of their own).  

I therefore hope that my Bill is passed on Friday to put an end to a system that currently sets up some individuals to fail.

I also had the opportunity to press the views of Barrow and Furness to the Prime Minister in Downing Street when he welcomed the Northern Research Group on Tuesday.  

I stressed that the Levelling Up Fund and the Town Deal are crucial to reviving our local economy. They will demonstrate to local people, including those who voted for us for the first time, that we are truly getting on with it.  The PM is a northern MP himself (for Richmond, Yorkshire) and it was clear that he is well aware of the need for action.

Fraud is a frequent topic in my mailbox, so it was good to join a round table to discuss it. Two former Commissioners of the City of London Police (the authority responsible for managing fraud in the UK), other senior police representatives, and the ‘think tank’ RUSI considered what a good response should look like.

I shall return to Number 10 next week to speak to the policy team there, and I hope that I will be able to put my decade of counter-fraud experience (before I became an MP) to use in designing measures to reduce escalating fraud levels.

Somewhat unusually, I was in the Commons on a Friday to speak on an important Private Member’s Bill that is making its way through Parliament.

Henry Smith MP’s Hunting Trophies (Import Prohibition) Bill does what it says on the tin – stopping the trade and import of ‘hunting trophies’

I’ve been overwhelmed with letters from constituents on the issue - and even read one of them out, from Danielle from Barrow, in the Chamber.

Banning these imports is the right and moral thing to do, and I was very glad to have the opportunity to lend my support and shout ‘aye’ at the appropriate time so it can move forward.