Esther McVey

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The Right Honourable
Esther McVey
Esther Louise McVey 2010.jpg
Minister of State for Employment
Assumed office
7 October 2013
Prime Minister David Cameron
Preceded by Mark Hoban
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State
for Disabled People
In office
4 September 2012 – 7 October 2013
Prime Minister David Cameron
Preceded by Maria Miller
Succeeded by Mike Penning (as Minister of State for Disabled People)
Member of Parliament
for Wirral West
Assumed office
6 May 2010
Preceded by Stephen Hesford
Majority 2,436 (6.2%)
Personal details
Born Esther Louise McVey[1]
(1967-10-24) 24 October 1967 (age 46)
Liverpool, Lancashire, England
Nationality British
Political party Conservative
Residence London and West Kirby
Alma mater Queen Mary, University of London
City University London
Occupation Company Director;
Profession Television presenter;
Religion Roman Catholic

Esther Louise McVey (born 24 October 1967) is a British Conservative Party politician who has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for Wirral West since 2010, and has served as Minister of State for Employment since 2013. She was previously a television presenter, businesswoman and the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Disabled People.

Early life and career[edit]

McVey was born in Liverpool and educated at the Belvedere School, before undertaking a Law degree at Queen Mary, University of London. In July 2009 McVey graduated from Liverpool John Moores University with a Distinction for her Master of Science in Corporate Governance, and won the North of England Excellence Award for her studies.

McVey has worked in the family business which specialises in demolition and site clearance,[2] land reclamation and regeneration.

McVey took full advantage of grants offered by the North West Regional Development Agency to fund her business 'Winning Women.'[3] before the agency was abolished on 31 March 2012 by the Cameron Ministry.

Media career[edit]

She returned to the family business after university, while undertaking a post-graduate course in Radio Journalism at City University, London before embarking on a career in the media, both as a presenter and producer. McVey was a co-presenter of the summer holiday Children's BBC strand But First This in 1991, and has subsequently presented and produced a wide range of programmes, co-hosting GMTV, BBC1's science entertainment series How Do They Do That?, 5's Company, The Heaven and Earth Show, Shopping City, BBC2's youth current affairs programme Reportage, and Channel 4's legal series Nothing But The Truth with Ann Widdecombe. McVey has debated at the Oxford Union and took part in Eve Ensler's The Vagina Monologues at the Empire Theatre, Liverpool.

McVey returned to Liverpool and set up her own business, Making It (UK) Ltd, which provides training for SMEs as well as providing office space for new start up businesses and through which she founded Winning Women.[4] McVey was nominated for Merseyside Woman of the Year and Cheshire Woman of the Year 2004/05.

Political career[edit]

A supporter of Conservative Way Forward, McVey stood as a Conservative Party candidate in the 2005 general election, in the Wirral West constituency, losing to the sitting Labour MP Stephen Hesford by 1,097 votes.

In January 2008, McVey agreed an out of court settlement to pay Hesford £6,500 in damages and legal costs after a member of her team copied on her blog an article from The Mail on Sunday that the MP was planning to take part in what was described as a cricket "junket" to Australia and New Zealand.[5] Hesford had intended to go on the tour and had paid a substantial deposit but later cancelled.

In the 2010 general election, McVey won the seat of Wirral West, with 42.5% of the votes cast, beating Labour's Phil Davies by 2,436 votes.[6] Since 2010, McVey has served as Parliamentary Private Secretary to Employment Minister Chris Grayling[7] and Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Work and Pensions, the latter between September 2012 and October 2013.

In his 7 October 2013 reshuffle, David Cameron appointed her Minister of State for Employment at the Department for Work and Pensions.

On 15 April 2014 McVey was criticized by social media users for attacking the Wirral Labour Group in a tweet published at the time a memorial service for the Hillsborough Disaster was being held at Anfield Stadium. She later claimed to regret the mistiming of her communication.[8]

Personal life[edit]

Currently single, McVey lives in West Kirby, and when in London shares a flat with fellow Conservative MP, Philip Davies.[9] She previously had relationships with BBC producer Mal Young and Conservative MP Ed Vaizey.[10]

A longstanding friend of Kate McCann, McVey helped her family set up the Madeleine McCann Fund and remained part of the board for eight months.


  1. ^ "Crown Office". 13 May 2010. Retrieved 15 April 2014. 
  2. ^ "Esther McVey selected as Parliamentary Candidate". Wirral West Conservatives. Retrieved 19 August 2008. 
  3. ^ "MP Esther McVey launches a magazine to inspire teenage girls". Liverpool Echo. 29 November 2010. 
  4. ^ "Winning Women - About Us". Winning Women. Retrieved 19 August 2008. 
  5. ^ "Wirral Tory to pay MP £6,500 damages and costs over cricket ‘junket’ slur". Liverpool Daily Post. 22 January 2008. Retrieved 19 August 2008. 
  6. ^ "UK General Election Wirral West Vote Result". BBC. Retrieved 7 May 2010. 
  7. ^ [1][dead link]
  8. ^ Johnson, Mark (11 April 2014). "Wirral MP Esther McVey in social media storm after sending out party-political tweet during Hillsborough service". Liverpool Echo. Retrieved 15 April 2014. 
  9. ^ "Former wife of Shipley MP is expecting baby". Keighley News. 6 April 2013. Retrieved 3 October 2013. 
  10. ^ Hull, Liz. "The racy photo shoot rising Tory star Esther McVey might rather forget". Daily Mail. Retrieved 15 April 2014. 

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Stephen Hesford
Member of Parliament for Wirral West
Succeeded by
Political offices
Preceded by
Maria Miller
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State
Minister for Disabled People

Succeeded by