|The Right Honourable
Sir Alan Haselhurst
|Chairman of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association|
27 July 2011
|Preceded by||Shafie Apdal|
|Chairman of the Administration Committee|
27 July 2010
|Preceded by||Frank Doran|
|Chairman of Ways and Means|
14 May 1997 – 14 June 2010
|Preceded by||Michael Morris|
|Succeeded by||Lindsay Hoyle|
|Member of Parliament
for Saffron Walden
7 July 1977
|Preceded by||Peter Kirk|
|Member of Parliament
for Middleton and Prestwich
18 June 1970 – 28 February 1974
|Preceded by||Denis Coe|
|Succeeded by||Jim Callaghan|
23 June 1937 |
South Elmsall, Yorkshire, England
|Spouse(s)||Angela, née Bailey|
|Children||2 sons, 1 daughter|
|Alma mater||Oriel College, Oxford|
|Religion||Church of England|
Sir Alan Gordon Barraclough Haselhurst (born 23 June 1937) is a British Conservative politician who has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for Saffron Walden since 1977. Previously he represented Middleton and Prestwich as MP from 1970 to 1974.
Early life, education and career
Alan Haselhurst was born in South Elmsall, near Hemsworth, Yorkshire and was educated at King Edward's School, Birmingham, Cheltenham College in Gloucestershire before going upto Oriel College, Oxford.
Before his election to Parliament, he worked in management in the chemicals industry and became an unremunerated director when his father's pharmacy was incorporated. He was the Chairman of the Manchester Youth and Community Service from 1974 until being returned to parliament.
Haselhurst worked as an election agent for Robin Balniel, Conservative MP for Hertford, at both the 1964 and 1966 general elections. Being elected in 1964, he served for two years as the Chairman of the National Young Conservatives.
He was elected to the House of Commons at the 1970 general election for the Lancashire seat of Middleton and Prestwich, defeating the sitting Labour MP Denis Coe by 1,042 votes. However, Haselhurst lost the seat at the next February 1974 general election to Labour's Jim Callaghan by just 517 votes (not the same James (Jim) Callaghan, later Prime Minister, and later still Lord Callaghan of Cardiff). The Conservative MP for the Essex seat of Saffron Walden, Sir Peter Kirk, died on 17 April 1977 and Haselhurst was selected to contest the resultant by-election on 7 July. Alan Haselhurst won the seat with a majority of 12,437 and has been returned as the constituency's MP ever since.
In Parliament, he served as the Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS) to the Home Secretary Robert Carr from 1973 prior to losing his seat at the February 1974 general election, later being appointed PPS to the Secretary of State for Education and Science Mark Carlisle for two years from 1979. He served on the European Legislation Select Committee for fifteen years from 1982, and was a member of the Transport Select Committee from 1992 to 1997. He was invited to ask the first question in Margaret Thatcher's final Prime minister's questions on 27 November 1990.
Following the 1997 general election, he was appointed Chairman of Ways and Means (Deputy Speaker), remaining in that post under successive Speakers Betty Boothroyd, Michael Martin, and John Bercow until May 2010.
Alan Haselhurst was a contender to succeed Martin after his resignation as Commons Speaker on 19 May 2009. Sir Alan was among those who became embroiled in the MPs' expenses controversy being accused by The Daily Telegraph of claiming £12,000 for gardening expenses over 4 years, in the sum of £249 every month — £1 below the threshold which meant he was not required to provide receipts. Despite commonplace advice from the Fees Office to submit expenses in this way, he made endeavours to wipe the slate clean by refunding his gardening expenses "out of respect to his constituents". He withdrew from the Speaker election race after getting 66 votes in the first round of voting and 57 in the second.
Sir Alan chose not to seek re-election as a Commons Deputy Speaker after the 2010 general election. Since. by convention, the Chairman of Ways and Means must come from a different party affiliation than that of Mr. Speaker, he would only have been eligible to stand for First Deputy Chairman, junior to his previous office. Nevertheless, his fellow parliamentarians entrusted him to continue as Interim Deputy Speaker chairing debates in the House of Commons during the period between the State Opening of Parliament and their election of new Deputy Speakers.
On 27 July 2010, Haselhurst was elected Chairman of the House of Commons Administration Committee, having earlier been defeated in the election for chair of the Backbench Business Committee by Natascha Engel.
Haselhurst has also, since 27 July 2011, served as Chairman of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association. Haselhurst replaced the Malaysian Shafie Apdal as Chairman, and is the first Briton to serve as Chairman since Sir Colin Shepherd in 1996.
After being re-adopted as the Conservative candidate at a meeting of the local party association on 13 February 2014, Haselhurst was returned as MP for Saffron Walden at the 2015 general election. He has represented the constituency throughout ten parliaments since 1977.
Sir Alan has always had a strong passion for the Commonwealth. Between the years of 1978-1981 he was Chair of the Commonwealth Youth Exchange Council. In July 2010 Sir Alan was elected Chair of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association UK Branch and the following year at the Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference at London in July 2011, Sir Alan Haselhurst was elected Chairperson of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association's Executive Committee.
Alan Haselhurst married Angela Margaret Bailey on 16 April 1977, and they have two sons and a daughter. He is a very vocal supporter of community-based projects and was for a time a Director of Turning Point, a charity working with socially excluded young people, for five years from 1981. A noted Europhile, he is regarded as a one-nation Conservative and an ally of Kenneth Clarke.
He was knighted in 1995 and sworn of the Privy Council in 1999. He is the Secretary of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Cricket, was a member of the executive council of Essex County Cricket Club from 1996 to 2008, and is a member of MCC. He is also the author of cricketing stories.
- Occasionally Cricket: The Unpredictable Performances of the Outcasts CC by Alan Haselhurst, 1999, Queen Anne Press, ISBN 1-85291-622-2
- Eventually Cricket by Alan Haselhurst, 2001, Queen Anne Press ISBN 1-85291-637-0
- Incidentally Cricket by Alan Haselhurst, 2003, Queen Anne Press ISBN 1-85291-655-9
- Accidentally Cricket by Alan Haselhurst, 2009, The Professional & Higher Partnership Ltd, ISBN 978-1-907076-00-8
- Unusually Cricket by Alan Haselhurst, 2011, The Professional & Higher Partnership Ltd.
- Prime Minister's Questions - 27 November 1990, YouTube
- Rayner, Gordon (12 May 2009). "Alan Haselhursts £12,000 gardening bill". The Daily Telegraph (Telegraph Media Group Limited). Archived from the original on 15 May 2009. Retrieved 19 May 2009.
- "MP to pay back Gardening Expenses". Saffron Walden Conservatives. May 2009. Archived from the original on 29 June 2009. Retrieved 23 June 2009.
The expense claims I made over recent years have been strictly in accordance with Parliamentary rules. The designation of my constituency home as my second home instead of my rented flat in London was obligatory on my becoming Deputy Speaker. In terms of total expense claims I currently rank 582nd out of 646 MPs. However, my claim for gardening help has caused concern. Out of respect to my constituents I am this week repaying the sum of £12,000.
- "Election of the Speaker: Latest". Parliament of the United Kingdom. 22 June 2009. Archived from the original on 25 June 2009. Retrieved 22 June 2009.[dead link]
- "Chair of Administration Committee elected". Retrieved 11 October 2013.
- "Sir Alan to head two committees". Saffron Walden Weekly News. 6 August 2010. Retrieved 15 March 2011.
- "Chairpersons". Commonwealth Parliamentary Association. Retrieved 11 October 2013.
- Sir Alan Haselhurst official site
- Debrett's People of Today
- Contributions in Parliament at Hansard 1803–2005
- 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
- Saffron Walden Conservatives
- Official Conservatives biography
- Commonwealth Parliamentary Association
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
|Member of Parliament for
Middleton and Prestwich
1970 – February 1974
Sir Peter Kirk
|Member of Parliament for
1977 – present
|Chairman of Ways and Means
Hon Lindsay Hoyle