FIRST it was Jo Cox and then on Friday Sir David Amess, stabbed to death by a man with a knife. The second killing of an MP in five years. No less shocking and sickening and something that asks very searching questions about our society and many of the people within it.

Local MP Steve Brine has spoken about the loss of someone he considered a friend. Understandably he has been less keen to discuss his own and his staff’s security arrangements.

We cannot simply shrug our shoulders and say ‘well, this is the 21st century’. It is quite simply intolerable.

A suggestion has been made that police officers should be present at MPs’ surgeries but dismissed by many. Why? MPs are a crucial part of our democracy, a link between Parliament and the people. An hour or two once a week is hardly going to snap the thin blue line but give protection at a time and place when an assailant knows the MP will be vulnerable.

It will send a powerful message that such killings are an attack not just on one man or woman but on our democracy and so on all of us.