This week, Matthew has been pleased to arrange an exhibition at the House of Commons of a 'Quilt of Love and Hope' made by grandparents estranged from their grandchildren.
Research carried out by Grandparents United for Children suggests that as many as 2 million grandparents across the UK do not have contact with their grandchildren. The number of children affected is clearly even greater. The estrangement is most often due to a breakdown in the parental relationship.
As a result many grandchildren are being deprived of the love and care of grandparents and the special relationship that can exist with grandparents.
The Quilt of Love and Hope has been put together by an estranged grandmother using patchwork squares from many grandparents to reflect their feelings about the loss of their relationship with their beloved grandchild/grandchildren.
Matthew said: "I have been working with the grandparents' organisations for almost ten years, ever since my constituent Lorraine Bushell - recently awarded an OBE for her work supporting estranged grandparents - raised the issue with me.
"I have heard some very upsetting stories and I feel strongly that children should have a right to a relationship with their grandparents, as they do in other countries such as France. It is very sad that here in the UK the only way thousands of grandparents and grandchildren can have contact is through a lengthy, intrusive and costly court route.
"I want to see a change in the law which gives a child the right to have contact with its grandparents and enjoy the sort of relationship with its grandparents that most of us take for granted."
In addition to Matthew, the grandparents' campaign is supported by The Rt Hon. the Lord Blunkett, Dame Esther Rantzen DBE, Mike Freer MP, Daniel Greenberg CBE and Jasvinder Sanghera CBE. Matrimonial and divorce solicitor Vanessa Lloyd Platt has also been part of the lobby to change the law and spoke at the opening of the exhibition. Other contributors have been psychologists, grief specialists and psychotherapists.
Matthew is pictured with Lorraine Bushell OBE, founder of the grandparents support groups, and speaking at the opening of the Quilt exhibition.