Bob Russell (British politician)
|Sir Bob Russell
|Member of Parliament
1 May 1997
|Preceded by||Constituency created|
31 March 1946 |
|Political party||Liberal Democrat (1988–present)|
Sir Robert Edward Russell (born 31 March 1946) is a British politician who has been a Liberal Democrat Member of Parliament for Colchester since 1997 (re-elected 2001, 2005 and 2010). He was knighted in the 2012 New Year Honours for public service.
Before being elected to the House of Commons, Russell was a councillor for over twenty years, initially for the Labour Party, then for the Social Democrats, and finally for the Lib Dems. He represented Colchester's New Town ward. He was leader of Colchester Borough Council[when?] until 1991 having previously served as Mayor of Colchester for the year 1986–87.
Russell stood unsuccessfully for Parliament in 1979 as a Labour candidate.
He was the Liberal Democrat spokesman on Culture, Media and Sport from 2002 to 2005, but was succeeded by Don Foster and was a member of the Liberal Democrat Shadow Defence team until the formation of the Conservative – Liberal Democrat Coalition Government on 11 May 2010, at which point he became a backbencher.
In 2011, he was a member of the special Select Committee set up to scrutinise the Bill that became the Armed Forces Act 2011.
Russell is a supporter of Votes at 16. He is very active in the local school and has saved Thomas Lord Audley School from closure. He was also fighting for Alderman Blaxill School to be saved, however a decision was made to close this school due to a shortage of children in the area.
In December 2010, a reply he wrote to a letter from a constituent concerned about the cost of the coming Royal Wedding was published in the press. In it Russell told his constituent to "get a life and stop whinging". In 2011, he followed this up with another contentious letter to a constituent. Referring to him as a "rubbish man", Russell accused those in support of the Visual Arts Facility as "expecting the council to fund their social life".
In 2012, Russell was found to have broken parliamentary expenses rules after claiming more than £70,000 over seven years for an office owned by a company in which he was a major shareholder. He was not punished, but found to be in "clear breach" of the rules.
- The London Gazette: . 31 December 2011.
- Porter, Andrew (28 October 2010). "Housing benefit cuts to stay, says David Cameron". The Daily Telegraph (London). Retrieved 31 October 2010.
- "Colchester constituency result". BBC News. 7 May 2010. Retrieved 7 May 2010.
- "Select Committee on the Armed Forces Bill". parliament.uk. Retrieved 20 Sep 2013.
- "Register of All-Party Groups". UK Parliament. 9 July 2009. Retrieved 10 March 2010.[dead link]
- Bob Russell (30 November 2005). "EDM 1169/2005: Return of Young's bitter to Strangers' Bar". UK Parliament. Retrieved 10 March 2010.
- Graeme Wilson (5 November 2008). "Tessa's £10,000 Lewis race trip". The Sun (London). Retrieved 10 March 2010.
- "MP to anti-royal constituent: get a life and stop whinging". The Daily Telegraph. 13 December 2010. Retrieved 16 December 2010.
- "MP Bob attacks Vaf fan in angry letter". Colchester Gazette. 12 April 2011. Retrieved 11 May 2011.
- "Sir Bob Russell MP 'broke Commons expenses rules'". BBC News. Retrieved 13 February 2015.
- Whitehead, Jeff (1999). Colchester United: From Graham to Wadsworth – A Complete Record. Desert Island Books. ISBN 1-874287-27-9.
- Bob Russell MP official constituency website
- Profile at the Liberal Democrats
- Profile at Parliament of the United Kingdom
- Contributions in Parliament at Hansard 1803–2005
- Current session contributions in Parliament at Hansard
- Electoral history and profile at The Guardian
- Voting record at Public Whip
- Record in Parliament at TheyWorkForYou
- Profile at Westminster Parliamentary Record
- Profile at BBC News Democracy Live
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
|New constituency||Member of Parliament for Colchester