Rob Wilson

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Robert Wilson
Minister for Civil Society
Assumed office
27 September 2014
Prime Minister David Cameron
Preceded by Brooks Newmark
Member of Parliament
for Reading East
Assumed office
5 May 2005
Preceded by Jane Griffiths
Majority 7,605 (15.2%)
Personal details
Born (1965-01-04) 4 January 1965 (age 49)
Wallingford, Oxfordshire, England
Nationality British
Political party Conservative
Alma mater University of Reading
Profession Politician

Robert Owen Biggs Wilson[1] (born 4 January 1965) is a United Kingdom politician and entrepreneur. He was elected Conservative Member of Parliament for the Reading East parliamentary constituency in the 2005 general election.[2] He became Minister for Civil Society in the Cabinet Office on 27 September 2014.

Early life

Wilson was born and brought up in south Oxfordshire[2] and moved to Reading in 1984. Between 1984 and 1988 he attended the University of Reading, the final year of which he spent as the President of the Reading University Students' Union. Wilson was a member of the Social Democratic Party.[3]


Local government

Wilson joined the Conservatives, and was elected for Thames Ward of Reading Borough Council in 1992, serving until 1996.[4] In 2003 he was elected to serve in Caversham Ward, and in June 2004 was again elected for Thames. Following his election as Member of Parliament for Reading East, he stood down from Reading Borough Council in May 2006.[4]

2005 Election

Wilson had previously unsuccessfully contested Bolton North East (UK Parliament constituency) at the 1997 general election.[4] He was selected as the Conservative parliamentary candidate for Reading East using a pioneering primary system, which opened the selection to non-party members for the first time.

At the May 2005 General Election he faced the Labour candidate and councillor, Tony Page.[5] Page had replaced sitting MP, Labour's Jane Griffiths, who had been de-selected by her party.[5]

Wilson won 15,557 votes (35.4%) of the vote against Page's 15,082 votes (34.3%).[6] The Conservative share of the vote increased by 3.4%.[6]

As an MP

Since his election Wilson has been appointed to the Education and Skills Select Committee[4] and played a role in the Education and Inspections Bill and issues such as Special Educational Needs.

In July 2007 Wilson was promoted to the Conservative frontbench as Shadow Higher Education Minister[4] replacing Boris Johnson.

Wilson is[when?] running a campaign against the carrying of knives in conjunction with the local daily paper and victims families and he has been very active in campaigning on local Transport issues, including the upgrading of Reading railway station and the extension of the Crossrail project to Reading.

After the resulting Conservative and Liberal Democrat Coalition of the 2010 General Election, Wilson was appointed as Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS) to the Secretary of State for Culture Jeremy Hunt MP.[4]

He was appointed to the government as a minister on 27 September 2014, becoming Minister for Civil Society following the sudden resignation of Brooks Newmark.[7]


Further reading

  • Wilson, Rob (2010). 5 Days to Power. Biteback. ISBN 978-1849540810. 
  • Wilson, Rob (2014). The Eye of the Storm: The View from the Centre of the Political Scandal. Biteback. ISBN 9781849545013. 

External links

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Jane Griffiths
Member of Parliament for Reading East