Coronavirus: Hyndburn MP makes history with Zoom speech to Parliament

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media captionConservative MP Sara Britcliffe delivering her maiden speech in Parliament by video link

An MP has made history by becoming the first to make a maiden speech to the House of Commons via video due to the coronavirus lockdown.

Sara Britcliffe, MP for Hyndburn, gave her address via the video conferencing tool Zoom from her home office.

The 25-year-old became the constituency's first female MP in December and the youngest Conservative member in the country.

Deputy Speaker Nigel Evans said her speech was "history in the making".

Ms Britcliffe said she "could never have imagined" the circumstances surrounding her speech, as she set out her priorities.

"I always said I got into politics to serve the community that I love and have lived in all my life," she said.

"And I always said I would somehow redefine what it meant to be a constituency MP."

She said it was an "honour" to speak from "the place I call home and in the community that I represent".

She said she wanted to thank her constituents, particularly NHS and other key workers, during the lockdown and praised the work of organisations such as the Hyndburn and Ribble Valley domestic violence team.

Mr Evans confirmed it was the first time a maiden speech had been given by somebody not physically in the chamber.

Ms Britcliffe said: "I would have liked to have done it among my friends and colleagues but realise that it is so important that everyone gets behind the social distancing measures the government has put in."

Last week Ms Britcliffe was among those taking part in Prime Minister's Questions remotely as part of a virtual Parliament, which saw some 120 MPs joining through the video conferencing tool.

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