Nicholas Boles

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Nick Boles
Planning minister Nick Boles MP giving his keynote speech Housing The Next Generation.jpg
Boles in 2013
Minister of State for Skills and Enterprise
Incumbent
Assumed office
14 July 2014
Prime Minister David Cameron
Preceded by Matthew Hancock
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government
In office
5 September 2012 – 14 July 2014
Prime Minister David Cameron
Preceded by Greg Clark (as Minister of State)
Succeeded by Penny Mordaunt
Member of Parliament
for Grantham and Stamford
Incumbent
Assumed office
6 May 2010
Preceded by Quentin Davies
Majority 14,826 (28.1%)
Personal details
Born Nicholas Edward Coleridge Boles
(1965-11-02) 2 November 1965 (age 48)
Nationality British
Political party Conservative
Alma mater Winchester College
Magdalen College, Oxford
Harvard University
Website www.nickbolesmp.com

Nicholas Edward Coleridge "Nick" Boles (born 2 November 1965)[1] is a British Conservative Party politician who is the Member of Parliament (MP) for the Grantham and Stamford constituency in Lincolnshire. Boles currently serves as a junior minister in the Department for Communities and Local Government as a Planning minister.

He was previously a Westminster City councillor and the Director of Policy Exchange, a think tank based in Westminster.

Early life[edit]

Winchester College

Boles is the son of Sir Jack Boles, who was the Head of the National Trust from 1975-1983,[2][3] and the great-nephew of Conservative MP Dennis Boles.[4] Boles was a scholar at Winchester College before studying PPE at Magdalen College, Oxford, then winning a Kennedy Scholarship to study for a Master's in Public Policy at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.[citation needed]

Career[edit]

In 1995, he founded a small DIY supply small business, Longwall Holdings Limited, where he is non-executive chairman, having served as the chief executive until 2000.[5] In 1998, he was elected to Westminster City Council for the West End ward comprising Mayfair and Soho. He was chairman of the Housing Committee from 1999 to 2001, before stepping down in 2002. During much of this time, Boles shared a flat with fellow Conservative activists Michael Gove and Ivan Massow. He and Gove, along with fellow MPs Ed Vaizey, David Cameron, George Osborne and Rachel Whetstone, were often described as being the Conservative Party's 'Notting Hill Set'.[6] He founded the think tank Policy Exchange in 2002 and served as the Director until leaving the organisation in 2007 to avoid a potential conflict of interest.[7]

Boles was the Conservative Party candidate for the Labour-held marginal seat of Hove for the May 2005 general election. He received some media attention during 2005 election by being an openly gay Conservative candidate for a winnable seat. However, Celia Barlow retained the seat for Labour. The share of the conservative vote fell by 2%. He was a candidate in the Conservative primary for the London mayoral election, 2008 but withdrew after being diagnosed with Hodgkins Lymphoma.[6][8]

Boles recovered from his illness and in October 2007 was selected as the prospective Conservative candidate to contest Grantham and Stamford, the seat occupied by Quentin Davies, who switched allegiance from the Conservatives to Labour earlier in 2007.[6] In May 2008, he was appointed as the Chief of Staff for the new Conservative Mayor of London Boris Johnson for a period of three months.[9] In the later half of 2008, he started work on preparing the Conservatives for potential government by meeting senior civil servants to discuss how to implement Conservative policies if they won the next general election.[7] He was elected as member for Grantham and Stamford on 6 May 2010 with a majority of 14,826 votes.[10] He was appointed as Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Schools Minister, Nick Gibb in 2010.[11]

Nick Boles is a member of the Cambridge-based think tank the Henry Jackson Society, which advocates a pro-active approach to the spread of democracy in the world. In 2012 Boles was listed as being a participant in that year's Bilderberg meeting.[12]

In August 2014 it was announced that Boles had been appointed Construction Minister.[13]

Policy Positions[edit]

Boles speaking in 2013

In July 2012 Boles used a speech at the Resolution Foundation think tank to call for:

  • An end to winter fuel payments, free prescriptions, free bus travel and free TV licences for better-off pensioners from 2015;[14][15]
  • A postponement of deciding on full implementation of Andrew Dilnot’s solution to the future funding of social care until the next Comprehensive Spending Review;
  • A cut of £10.5 billion from welfare bills by 2016/17 and devising a better solution to support good parenting of young children than the Sure Start programme which in the speech he says is "demonstrably ineffective".[14]

Expenses[edit]

In August 2012, it was revealed that he had claimed expenses for Hebrew lessons, which the Daily Mail and the Taxpayers' Alliance stated was so he could talk to his civil partner.[16] Boles was quoted as saying “It is ­something I’m entitled to do. I’ve done it and that’s that.[17] Taxpayers Alliance's Matthew Sinclair said to Pink News:

Nick Boles has abused this taxpayer-funded perk in order to make conversation around the breakfast table a little easier...Mr. Boles’ unapologetic response is particularly galling, given that an attitude of entitlement was one of the root causes of the expenses crisis in the last Parliament[18]

Reaction in local newspapers the Stamford Mercury and The Grantham Journal included vehement criticism.[19][20][21][22]

Personal[edit]

Boles is openly gay.[23] In May 2011 Boles entered a civil partnership, as noted in his contribution to the parliamentary debate on the Middle East on 16 May 2011.[24]

Bibliography[edit]

  • Boles, Nick (2010), Which Way's Up? The future for Coalition Britain and how to get there, Biteback, ISBN 1-84954-063-2 .
  • Vaizey, Edward; Gove, Michael; Boles, Nicholas (2001), A blue tomorrow, Politico's Pub, ISBN 978-1-84275-027-8 .

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Nicholas Boles MP". BBC Democracy Live (BBC). Retrieved 25 July 2010. 
  2. ^ Watt, Nicholas (13 September 2012). "Free up green-belt land for new housing, says Policy Exchange". The Guardian (London). 
  3. ^ "Remember YOUR roots, Mr Boles? New planning minister grew up in glorious countryside... but won't say green belt is sacrosanct". Daily Mail (London). 
  4. ^ http://www.scribd.com/doc/207917124/Keeping-it-in-the-Family
  5. ^ "Nicholas". boles4hove. Retrieved 13 December 2008. [dead link]
  6. ^ a b c "Nick Boles selected to fight Thatcher seat". Pink News. Retrieved 13 December 2008. 
  7. ^ a b Hencke, David (7 June 2008). "Thinkers behind fresh Tory policies move up in party hierarchy". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 13 December 2008. 
  8. ^ "Boris considered for London mayor". BBC News. 4 July 2007. Retrieved 13 December 2008. 
  9. ^ "Conservative candidate working with London mayor". Grantham Journal. Retrieved 13 December 2008. 
  10. ^ Grantham and Stamford, BBC News Election 2010
  11. ^ [1][dead link]
  12. ^ "Bilderberg Meetings". Bilderbergmeetings.org. 3 June 2012. Retrieved 3 September 2012. 
  13. ^ "Nick Boles Becomes Construction Minister". OBAS Group. 
  14. ^ a b "Key Cameron Ally Calls for end to universal benefits for better-off pensioners". Resolutionfoundation.com. Retrieved 3 September 2012. 
  15. ^ "BBC News - Rich elderly should lose benefits, says David Cameron ally". Bbc.co.uk. 10 July 2012. Retrieved 3 September 2012. 
  16. ^ "Tory MP learns lover's language and puts the £678 cost of lessons on expenses". Mail Online (London). 10 August 2012. Retrieved 16 August 2012. 
  17. ^ James Lyons (9 August 2012). "Nick Boles: Conservative MP learning lover's language Hebrew at taxpayers' expense - Mirror Online". Mirror.co.uk. Retrieved 3 September 2012. 
  18. ^ Brocklebank, Christopher. "Tory MP Nick Boles claims expenses to learn his civil partner’s language". PinkNews.co.uk. Retrieved 3 September 2012. 
  19. ^ "Lightweight Grantham MP Nick Boles is spouting drivel - Local". Grantham Journal. 18 August 2012. Retrieved 3 September 2012. 
  20. ^ "Grantham MP Nick Boles’ attitude is simply pure arrogance - Letters & Opinion". Grantham Journal. 18 August 2012. Retrieved 3 September 2012. 
  21. ^ "Letters: I’m a Tory, but Mr Boles will not be getting my vote again". Newsrt.co.uk. Retrieved 3 September 2012. 
  22. ^ "Letters: I’m a Tory, but Mr Boles will not be getting my vote again - Letters - Rutland and Stamford Mercury". Stamfordmercury.co.uk. 17 August 2012. Retrieved 3 September 2012. 
  23. ^ Sylvester, Rachel (2 February 2002). "Gay Tory who aims to modernise party". Telegraph (London). Retrieved 20 March 2010. 
  24. ^ "Hansard 16 May 2011". 

External links[edit]

Non-profit organization positions
New creation Director of Policy Exchange
2002 – 2007
Succeeded by
Anthony Browne
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Quentin Davies
Member of Parliament for Grantham and Stamford
2010–present
Incumbent