|Member of Parliament
5 May 2005
|Preceded by||Nigel Jones|
12 October 1962 |
Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, England
|Political party||Liberal Democrat|
|Spouse(s)||Dr. Shona Arora|
|Alma mater||The Queen's College, Oxford|
Martin Charles Horwood (born 12 October 1962, Cheltenham) is a British Liberal Democrat politician. He is the Member of Parliament (MP) for the Cheltenham constituency. He is the founder and current chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Tribal Peoples.
He was born in St. Paul’s, Cheltenham, in 1962. His parents lived first in St. Mark’s and then in Leckhampton, where his mother still lives, joining the Cheltenham Young Liberals while still at Cheltenham College in 1979.
Horwood then went onto The Queen's College, Oxford to read Modern History in 1981, and was elected president of the Oxford Student Liberal Society and then chair of the party’s national student wing, the Union of Liberal Students.
After graduating and leaving student politics, he worked first in advertising and then in the voluntary sector. In 1990 he moved to Oxford to work for Oxfam. His teams raised tens of millions of pounds for the poor in developing countries, including £2.5m for victims of the Rwanda genocide.
Returning to Britain, he became the first Director of Fundraising at the Alzheimer’s Society, the care and research charity for people with dementia and their carers. Horwood led the team that won the charity Tesco Charity of the Year, earning millions for the charity nationwide and £16,000 for the Cheltenham branch alone.
He returned home to Cheltenham in 2001 to work for local business Target Direct which works mainly with charity clients. He became their Head of Consultancy.
Horwood stood twice unsuccessfully before gaining election. In 1992 he was defeated by Labour's Andrew Smith at Oxford East. Later he stood for the Cities of London & Westminster in Cities of London and Westminster in 2001, but came third.
Horwood was adopted as parliamentary candidate for Cheltenham following the decision by sitting MP Nigel Jones to stand down. He was elected at the 2005 general election, winning the seat with a majority of 2,303 over the Conservatives.
In July 2005, then party leader Charles Kennedy appointed Horwood to the Shadow Home Affairs team, before he was promoted by Menzies Campbell to be Shadow Environment Minister, under Chris Huhne, whom Horwood had backed in the party's leadership election. He has spoken in favour of a switch to more green taxation, tougher action to prevent climate change and more investment in bio-fuels and microgeneration.
Horwood is the chairman and founder of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Tribal Peoples. Created in 2007, the APPG for Tribal Peoples is composed of over 30 cross-party MPs and peers with the aim of raising parliamentary and public awareness of tribal peoples. Its secretariat is the international indigenous rights organization, Survival International. The Group meets two or three times a year and one of its main objectives is to press for ratification of ILO Convention 169 on the rights of indigenous and tribal peoples.
Horwood is also the Secretary of the APPG on corporate responsibility.
In March 2009 Horwood was one of several MPs used as examples by the BBC looking at the reliability of Wikipedia. He urged Wikipedia to crack down upon abuses of the open editing facility and "acts of political vandalism".
In May 2010 Horwood was re-elected to serve the constituency of Cheltenham, beating Mark Coote the candidate for the Conservative party by a sizeable majority, claiming over 50% of the votes.
Horwood is the son of Don Horwood (1920–2004) and his wife Nina (born 1924), both formerly officers of GCHQ and before that of its wartime predecessor at Bletchley Park. His father was also a founder member of the Leckhampton Green Land Action Group.
He is married to Dr Shona Arora, now the Director of Public Health for Gloucestershire. They have two young children and live in Cheltenham.
- BBC News Online Election 2005, Result: Cheltenham, accessed 6 July 2009
- Biography on Liberal Democrat party website, accessed 6 July 2009
- All-Party Parliamentary Group for Tribal Peoples website
- UK politicians' Wikipedia worries, BBC News Online, 6 March 2009, accessed 6 July 2009
- "Tuition fees: How Liberal Democrat MPs voted", BBC News, accessed 14/12/2010
- Martin Horwood MP official constituency website
- Martin Horwood MP profile at the Liberal Democrats
- APPG for Tribal Peoples
- 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|
|Member of Parliament for Cheltenham