Andrew Rosindell

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Andrew Rosindell
Member of Parliament
for Romford
Assumed office
7 June 2001
Preceded byEileen Gordon
Majority13,788 (27.6%)
Personal details
Born (1966-03-17) 17 March 1966 (age 52)
Romford, London, England
Political partyConservative

Andrew Richard Rosindell /ˈrɒzɪnˌdɛl/ (born 17 March 1966) is a British Conservative politician. He is the Member of Parliament (MP) for the Romford constituency in Greater London. He is the international director of the European Foundation,[1] chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Flags & Heraldry Committee[2] and the UK's All-Party Parliamentary Group on the British Overseas Territories,[3] and member of the Flag Institute.

Early life[edit]

Rosindell was born in Romford as the son of a school dinner lady and an RAF pilot.[4] He attended Rise Park School, where Rosindell was bullied,[4] and then Marshalls Park School.[5] Before entering politics on a full-time basis he worked in features of the Bristol United Press' London office, was a PR Consultant and researcher for another MP.[citation needed]

He was chairman of the Young Conservatives from 1993 to 1994. He was chairman of the International Young Democrat Union from 1998 to 2002. From 1997–2001, he was Director of the European Foundation think tank.

Before becoming an MP he was a local councillor in Romford on Havering Council, winning the Chase Cross and Havering-atte-Bower ward from the Liberal Democrats in 1990. In 1998, he took an 88% share of the vote. This was a record for a Conservative in a London borough, and earned him reputation as a 'formidable campaigner'.[6]

Parliamentary career[edit]

After unsuccessful attempts to win seats in Glasgow Provan in 1992 and Thurrock in 1997, Rosindell was elected to The House of Commons in the 2001 general election, defeating the former teacher and Labour MP, Eileen Gordon. Rosindell won 18,931 votes (53% share) – a swing of 9.2% from Labour to Conservative. It was one of just nine seats the Conservatives managed to regain after the Labour landslide at the 2001 election. Not only did Margaret Thatcher visit the constituency during the campaign, another crucial aspect of his campaign involved canvassing with his Staffordshire Bull Terrier Spike, who wore a union flag waistcoat.[7] This was a tactic Rosindell had employed in previous elections, such as his unsuccessful campaign in Glasgow Provan in 1992.[4]

At the 2005 election, Rosindell increased his majority to 11,589, winning 21,560 votes on a 59.1% share. This was the second highest Conservative share of the vote anywhere in the UK.[8] During the election campaign a clash between Labour and Conservative activists distributing leaflets at Romford railway station resulted in the police being called.[9]

Rosindell was appointed by Michael Howard to be vice-chairman for Campaigning of the Conservative Party in 2004, and in December 2005 he became an Opposition Whip. In July 2007, he was appointed as a Shadow Minister for Home Affairs with particular responsibility for animal welfare.

On 5 February 2008, Rosindell became founding chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Flag Group (APPFG)[10][11] and proposed a Union Flag Bill[12] under the Ten Minute Rule. The APPFG changed its name to the Flags & Heraldry Committee in April 2010.

At the 2010 election, Rosindell increased his majority to 16,594, winning 26,031 votes on a reduced 56.0% share. He has since been elected onto the Foreign Affairs Select Committee as well as taking the Chairmanship of various all-party parliamentary groups, including the APPGs for the Commonwealth, and for the British Overseas Territories, the Channel Islands, and the Isle of Man, as well as Canada and Liechtenstein. In 2015 Rosindell took over chairmanship of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on the Chagos Islands from its founder, Jeremy Corbyn. In July 2010, Rosindell was appointed by the Chairman of the Conservative Party, Sayeeda Warsi, onto the board of the Westminster Foundation for Democracy.

In 2012, Rosindell became chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Zoos and Aquariums Group.[13]

At the 2015 election Rosindell was re-elected with 25,067 votes, on a 51% share, and also gained re-election to the Foreign Affairs Select Committee.

In September 2015, Rosindell presented a Ten Minute Rule Bill to Parliament entitled the United Kingdom Borders (Control and Sovereignty) Bill. In his speech presenting the Bill, he argued that Britain must take back control of its borders from the European Union, asserting that "A nation that does not retain sovereignty over its national borders will ultimately be powerless to determine its own destiny". The speech also advocated a policy of controlled immigration, arguing that public services were unable to keep up with the number of people entering the country every year.[14] Since the start of 2016, Rosindell has also been a member of the Advisory Board of the UK-based 'Polar Regions' think-tank Polar Research and Policy Initiative.[15]

In an Early day motion of 3 November 2016, as a celebration of the Brexit vote and Britain withdrawing from the European Union, Rosindell argued for a return to the broadcasting of "God Save the Queen" at the end of BBC One transmissions each day. The practice was dropped in 1997 (ostensibly due to BBC One adopting 24-hour broadcasting by simulcasting BBC News 24 overnight, rendering closedown obsolete).[16] That evening, BBC Two's Newsnight programme ended its nightly broadcast with a statement that it was happy to accede to Rosindell's request, before ending with a clip of the Sex Pistols performing the punk song of the same name, much to Rosindell's discontent.[17]

At the 2017 election Rosindell was re-elected with 29,671 votes, on a 59.4% share.

In 2017, Rosindell co-sponsored a Bill with Lord Empey to use Libyan funds frozen under Chapter 7 of the UN Charter, to compensate victims of IRA terrorism supported by the Gaddafi regime. [18]

On July 4 2018, Rosindell announced his bid to become the Conservative candidate for London Mayor. However, despite being the only Member of Parliament to enter the process, he failed to make the final shortlist.

Political views[edit]

Rosindell's political views are firmly Thatcherite: he is a Eurosceptic and supports the re-introduction of the death penalty and the detention of asylum seekers.[7] He is a member of The Freedom Association, and was a member of the Monday Club, until he was compelled to resign in 2001 by the Conservative leader Iain Duncan Smith. Journalist Ann Treneman in The Times described him as a "flag fanatic and super patriot".[19]

In 2012 he unsuccessfully attempted to introduce the United Kingdom Borders Bill in 2012, a private member's bill aiming to create a dedicated entry queue for citizens of countries where the British Queen is head of state and introduce pictures of the queen and more royal symbols at UK borders.[20][21] He reiterated calls for preferential treatment of "Her Majesty's subjects" visiting Britain in 2015, whilst also calling for the immigration system to favour Commonwealth citizens, as opposed to those from the EU. Rosindell proved ahead of his time, as this measure was then adopted by Chancellor Philip Hammond in his October 2018 budget. [22][23]

Rosindell has spoken in favour of a federal UK[24] and proposed a bill calling for a separate English Parliament, whilst declaring himself opposed to the idea of imposing English votes for English Laws restrictions on the Westminster Parliament.[25] Rosindell proposed in 2012 that Crown Dependencies and British Overseas Territories should be represented in the UK parliament like dependencies of Australia, Denmark, France and the Netherlands have been.[3]

As Chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary group on the Chagos Islands since 2015, Rosindell is a strong supporter of the Chagossians' right to self-determination, and condemns their forced relocation in the 1960s, repeatedly calling on Parliament not only to restore the Chagossians to their homeland, but also to assist with the provision of essential services and facilities, which have not been modernised since the forced relocation took place.[26]

Rosindell supports a broad range of nature conservation projects based in the British Overseas Territories, and has spoken in favour of the Great British Oceans Coalition's initiative to support the reclassification of the South Sandwich Isles as a fully protected nature reserve, specifying that in such a case the UK would be the only country in the world to create fully protected nature reserves in the Indian, Pacific, Atlantic, and Southern Oceans. [27] Rosindell joined Philip Davies and Christopher Chope in repeatedly blocking a backbench Bill banning the use of wild animals in circuses from progressing through Parliament, finally blocking it by lodging an objection in March 2015. Rosindell had earlier argued the circus is a "Great British institution…[that] deserves to be defended against the propaganda and exaggerations".[28] He also explained that during his time as Shadow Minister for Animal Welfare he had investigated the question the welfare of circus animals, and argued that no animals currently in British circuses were captured in the wild, and that most had been bred from generations of circus animals. Furthermore, Rosindell highlighted that circuses were inspected up to seven times a year, compared to zoos, which were mostly only inspected once a year, and that the welfare of circus animals fell under the provision of both the 2006 Animal Welfare Act and the Welfare of Wild Animals in Travelling Circuses (England) Regulations 2012, making further legislation largely redundant. [29] However, the bill had the support of the Coalition government, the Labour opposition and public opinion, which made its non-passage a headline item.[28]

Rosindell is an enthusiastic supporter of black cabs in London, and has spoken in favour of 'levelling the playing field' between black cabs and providers of other transport services, which require less time-intensive and specialised training.[30] Rosindell has criticised the lack of regulation of alternative ride-sharing services, saying 'it would be a deep shame to see an honest and historic trade disappear from our streets due to a predatory corporation. There are deep issues with cross border licensing, safety standards and tax arrangements, which has rapidly affected the black cab industry.'[31]

In 2017 Rosindell said “The humiliation of having a pink European Union passport will now soon be over and the United Kingdom nationals can once again feel pride and self-confidence in their own nationality when travelling, just as the Swiss and Americans can do. National identity matters and there is no better way of demonstrating this today than by bringing back this much-loved national symbol when travelling overseas.”[32] It was subsequently revealed that the colour of passports was not a matter controlled by the European Union, while the more general design standards related to the International Civil Aviation Organization, an agency of the UN.[33]

During the riots surrounding the 2017 Catalan independence referendum, Rosindell spoke out in his capacity as the vice-chairman of the APPG on Catalonia to say the UK should have sent a 'much stronger' message about condemning the Spanish government's reaction, saying the violence 'brought shame on Spain and shame on the European Union.'[34]

Parliamentary expenses[edit]

At the beginning of the MPs expenses scandal The Daily Telegraph reported that Rosindell "claimed more than £125,000 in second home expenses for a flat in London, while designating his childhood home 17 miles away – where his mother lived – as his main address" and between "2006 and 2008 claimed the maximum £400 a month for food".[35]

In 2010, the BBC accused Rosindell of breaching Parliamentary rules by accepting subsidised overseas trips to Gibraltar and subsequently raising multiple Gibraltar-related issues in Parliament without disclosing the trips in the Register of Members' Interests.[36] The journalist Simon Heffer dubbed him the 'King of subsidised jaunts' for sitting on "90 groups concerned with overseas locations or causes."[37]

In the Parliamentary year, 2014/15, Rosindell claimed £170,000 in expenses. £144,000 of this, however, was accounted for as staffing costs.


In September 2010, Rosindell sponsored the first Erotica event to be held in the Houses of Parliament. Rosindell maintained that he was promoting the hosts, a Romford-based business, as was his duty as the constituency MP.[38]

In June 2012, Rosindell was criticised for expressing "huge admiration" for former Chilean President Augusto Pinochet.[39][40] The comments were condemned by Labour Leader Ed Miliband MP[41] and neighbouring Labour MP Jon Cruddas.[42] Rosindell made the comments whilst defending a local colleague who had been criticised for apparently endorsing Pinochet, and claimed that Pinochet had overthrown a "far worse" communist regime and that "we should be grateful" for the assistance Pinochet's Chile provided to the British forces retaking the Falkland Islands.

He made the national headlines in September 2014 when his campaign vehicle was photographed whilst illegally parked in a disabled parking space in Central London.[43]

In February 2015, he cast doubt on the ability of Rachel Reeves (then Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions) to handle that ministerial responsibility in a putative post-election Labour cabinet, as she would be taking maternity leave soon after the election and would then have a young child to care for following her return to the post in September. He was criticised for the remarks by Labour MPs whilst David Cameron chose to distance himself from the comments.[44]


  1. ^ European Foundation – Personnel Archived 21 October 2008 at the Wayback Machine.
  2. ^ Register of All Party Groups Archived 19 November 2007 at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ a b "MP proposes British Overseas Territories be represented in Westminster". MercoPress. 2012-01-26. Retrieved 2017-09-06.
  4. ^ a b c Four Conservative hardliners who could win seats at the election, The Guardian, 2 May 2001
  5. ^ Ramzy Alwakeel (2012-09-26). "Romford MP Andrew Rosindell visits his old school, Marshalls Park". Romford Recorder. Retrieved 2017-09-06.
  6. ^ "About Andrew". Andrew Rosindell. Retrieved 2017-09-06.
  7. ^ a b "UK | Politics | Andrew Rosindell". BBC News. 16 October 2002. Retrieved 9 May 2012.
  8. ^ "UK Election 2005 – Size of winning vote". University of Keele – Political Science Resources. 2017-06-08. Retrieved 2017-09-06.
  9. ^ Evening Standard – Tory KO'd in Labour scrap Archived 16 November 2005 at the Wayback Machine.
  10. ^ "British Flags". The Flag Institute. Retrieved 2017-09-06.
  11. ^ "Register of All Party Groups". UK Parliament. 2010-04-21. Retrieved 2017-09-06.
  12. ^ "Union Flag Bill 2007–08". UK Parliament. 2008-10-13. Retrieved 2017-09-06.
  13. ^ Fri 09 12 Nov:00:00 BST 2012 (9 November 2012). "Register of All Party Groups – see Page 624" (PDF). Parliament. Retrieved 6 December 2012.
  14. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 26 September 2015. Retrieved 2015-09-25.
  15. ^ "Andrew Rosindell MP". The Polar Connection. 2014-06-20. Retrieved 2017-09-06.
  16. ^ Hughes, Laura (3 November 2016). "Tory MP calls for BBC 1 to mark Brexit with national anthem at the end of each day". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 3 November 2016.
  17. ^ Robb, Simon (4 November 2016). "BBC just trolled a conservative MP brilliantly with God Save the Queen". Metro. Retrieved 4 November 2016.
  18. ^ "Libya rejects use of frozen assets to pay IRA victims" – via
  19. ^ Treneman, Ann (14 December 2011). "Eurosceptic bulldogs go barking mad, with a fanfare". The Times. Retrieved 14 April 2015.
  20. ^ "The United Kingdom Borders Bill 2012". 13 July 2012. Retrieved 5 October 2012.
  21. ^ "Ten Minute Rule Motion". BBC. 11 July 2012. Retrieved 14 April 2015.
  22. ^ "British MPs want more Aussies in UK". SBS. 30 January 2015. Retrieved 14 April 2015.
  23. ^ Fitzgibbon, Liam (30 January 2015). "British MPs propose 'better immigration' for Kiwis, Aussies". New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 14 April 2015.
  24. ^ Dickie, Mure (17 September 2014). "The Battle for Britain". Financial Times. Retrieved 14 April 2015.
  25. ^ "Bill calls for England Parliament". Belfast Telegraph. 25 November 2014. Retrieved 14 April 2015.
  26. ^ "Chagos Islands - Hansard".
  27. ^ "Animals in Peril - Hansard".
  28. ^ a b Bawden, Tom (7 March 2015). "Ban on wild animals in circus blocked by Tory backbenchers". London: Independent. Retrieved 30 March 2015.
  29. ^ "Animals in Circuses". Andrew Rosindell.
  30. ^ "[Sir Edward Leigh in the Chair] — London Black Cabs: 15 Sep 2015: Westminster Hall debates - TheyWorkForYou". TheyWorkForYou.
  31. ^ "Andrew Rosindell MP secures meeting with Transport Minister". Andrew Rosindell.
  32. ^ "UK passport could turn dark blue after Brexit under £490m contract". The Guardian. 2017-04-02. Retrieved 2017-04-03.
  33. ^ "The blue passport is taking back control? No, it was first imposed on us from abroad". The Guardian. 22 December 2017. Retrieved 15 February 2018.
  34. ^ "'Spain can't be trusted to deal with this'". BBC News.
  35. ^ Swaine, Jon; Gammell, Caroline (20 June 2009). "MPs' expenses: Tory MP Andrew Rosindell has childhood home as main address". The Daily Telegraph. London.
  36. ^ Rosindell, Andrew. "Andrew Rosindell MP: Foreign trips and rule breaches". BBC. Retrieved 30 March 2015.
  37. ^ "SIMON HEFFER: Why we must do deals with monsters". Daily Mail. London. 13 September 2014.
  38. ^ Sinclair, Lulu, Oh La La! House of Commons goes Erotic Archived 5 October 2010 at the Wayback Machine. October 2010, Retrieved March 2011
  39. ^ Garnier, Mark (2012-06-15). "Tory MP has "huge admiration" for Augusto Pinochet". New Statesman. Retrieved 2017-09-06.
  40. ^ by Ramzy Alwakeel (2012-06-14). "Rainham and Dagenham MP Jon Cruddas slams Romford MP Andrew Rosindell over Pinochet comments". Romford Recorder. Retrieved 2017-09-06.
  41. ^ Ramzy Alwakeel (2012-06-19). "Ed Miliband calls on David Cameron to distance himself from Romford MP Andrew Rosindell's Pinochet comments". Romford Recorder. Retrieved 2017-09-06.
  42. ^ Who in an interview with the Romford Recorder stated that "Augusto Pinochet assumed power in a coup d'état and overthrew a democratically elected government. According to various reports and investigations thousands of people were killed in this process, and tens of thousands were interned and tortured by his regime".[1]
  43. ^ Jack Blanchard (2014-09-04). "Tory MP under fire after his 4x4 is spotted in disabled bay". Mirror Online. Retrieved 2017-09-06.
  44. ^ Perraudin, Francis (23 February 2015). "Cameron hits back at Tory MP's 'outrageous' maternity leave comments". Guardian. Retrieved 30 March 2015.

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Eileen Gordon
Member of Parliament for Romford