Claire Perry

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Claire Perry
Rail Minister Claire Perry at event in Southampton Port.jpg
Claire Perry at an event in Southampton, welcoming the arrival of the first Class 800 train
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State
for Transport
In office
15 July 2014 – 14 July 2016
Prime Minister David Cameron
Preceded by Stephen Hammond
Succeeded by Paul Maynard
Member of Parliament
for Devizes
Assumed office
6 May 2010
Preceded by Michael Ancram
Majority 20,751 (57.7%)
Personal details
Born (1964-04-03) 3 April 1964 (age 53)
Bromsgrove, Worcestershire, England[1]
Nationality British
Political party Conservative
Spouse(s) Clayton Perry (divorced)[2][3]
Children 3
Alma mater Brasenose College, Oxford,
Harvard University
Occupation MP for Devizes
Profession Investment banking

Claire Louise Perry[4] (born 3 April 1964) is a Conservative politician. Before the 2017 general election, at which she is standing, she was Member of Parliament for Devizes, England. She was first elected in the 2010 general election, Perry served as Parliamentary Private Secretary to Philip Hammond, the Secretary of State for Defence and as Government Assistant Whip. Subsequently, she was Rail minister from July 2014 to July 2016.

Early life[edit]

The youngest of three children, Perry was raised in North Somerset. She was educated at Nailsea School and Brasenose College, Oxford, where she read Geography, graduating in 1985. One of her contemporaries at Brasenose was journalist George Monbiot, who described her in his column for The Guardian as, at the time, "a firebrand who wanted to nationalise the banks and overthrow capitalism".[5] She later gained an MBA at Harvard University.

Perry worked in banking and finance for Bank of America, McKinsey & Company and Credit Suisse.[6]

Political career[edit]

After joining the Conservative party in 2006, Perry worked for the Chancellor George Osborne.[7] She was selected in November 2009 as a Conservative candidate after Michael Ancram announced his intention to stand down from Devizes, a safe seat for her party.[8]

In October 2011, Perry was appointed as Parliamentary Private Secretary to Philip Hammond, the Secretary of State for Defence.[6] She held this role until October 2013, when she became a Government Assistant Whip. On 15 July 2014, Perry was appointed Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport, with responsibility for rail fares, rail franchising, freight and logistics and transport agencies.[9] She resigned from this position on 14 July 2016, at the time of the reshuffle, when Theresa May became Prime Minister, the day after saying in a debate she was "often ashamed to be the Rail Minister."[10][11]

Perry campaigned for improvements in online safety, and in 2011 led an Independent Parliamentary Inquiry into Online Child Protection, with a particular focus on online pornography.[12] She was subsequently appointed by the Prime Minister, David Cameron, as an adviser on preventing the sexualisation and commercialisation of children.[13]

Perry argued for blocks on pornography for all internet users unless they opt out of it, citing the need to protect children.[14][15] In July 2013, hackers placed pornographic images on Perry's own website. Perry accused political blogger Paul Staines – known for his Guido Fawkes blog – of sponsoring the attack,[16][17] while Staines threatened to sue her for libel if the claim was not removed.[18] After Internet filters started to be rolled out, news agencies reported that a wide range of non-pornographic websites were now being censored by UK ISPs as a result of false-positive results for blocked phrases, including Perry's own website, as a result of her frequent use of words such as "porn" and "sex" in web posts about her pro-censorship campaign.[19][20]

In 2012, Perry mistakenly stated that the national debt and national deficit were the same thing in a discussion on BBC Radio 5 Live.[21][22][23]

Perry campaigned for the UK to remain in the EU during the 2016 membership referendum, and argued after the vote that some members of her party were "like jihadis" in their support for a "hard Brexit" and said the tone of the debate on leaving the European Union "borders on the hysterical".[24] She was one of only seven Conservative MPs to vote for an amendment arguing that parliament should have the final say on any deal to leave the EU.[25] She subsequently voted with her party in approving the decision to enact Article 50 and start the process of leaving the EU.

Personal life[edit]

Perry has three children from her former marriage.[2] She currently lives in Pewsey Vale.[26]


  1. ^ "Who's Who". Retrieved 24 July 2013. 
  2. ^ a b Tim Walker (21 March 2013). "'Cameron cutie' Claire Perry gives up on 'difficult' marriage". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 21 March 2013. 
  3. ^ Lewis Cowen (21 March 2013). "Devizes MP Claire Perry reveals that her marriage is over". Wiltshire Gazette & Herald. Retrieved 21 March 2013. 
  4. ^ "No. 59418". The London Gazette. 13 May 2010. p. 8746. 
  5. ^ Monbiot, George (31 March 2015). "'Wealth creators' are robbing our most productive people". The Guardian. Retrieved 23 April 2017. 
  6. ^ a b "About Claire". Retrieved 11 February 2017. 
  7. ^ Barltrop, Paul (6 November 2009). "Claire Perry chosen for Devizes". BBC Politics Show West. Retrieved 11 February 2017. 
  8. ^ Isaby, Jonathan (1 November 2009). "Claire Perry selected to fight Devizes". ConservativeHome. Retrieved 11 February 2017. 
  9. ^ "Claire Perry MP". GOV.UK. Retrieved 18 August 2015. 
  10. ^ "Southern: Claire Perry 'often ashamed' to be rail minister". BBC News. 13 July 2016. Retrieved 16 July 2016. 
  11. ^ "Rail minister Claire Perry resigns". BBC News. 15 July 2016. Retrieved 16 July 2016. 
  12. ^ "MPs call for better porn filters to protect children". BBC. 18 April 2012. Retrieved 10 February 2017. 
  13. ^ "Intrusive parenting 'damages children's lives' says Claire Perry, David Cameron's adviser on childhood". Telegraph. 2 March 2013. Retrieved 10 February 2017. 
  14. ^ Caroline Davies "Broadband firms urged to block sex websites to protect children", The Guardian, 19 December 2010
  15. ^ "MP calls for pornography 'opt-in' to protect children", BBC News, 23 November 2010
  16. ^ "Net block MP Claire Perry in spat over porn hack", BBC News, 24 July 2013
  17. ^ Doctorow C Technologically illiterate MP who masterminded UK porn blocker gets hacked, threatens reporter for writing about it, boing boing, 24 July 2013. Retrieved 25 July 2013.
  18. ^ Josh Halliday "Guido Fawkes blogger threatens to sue Tory MP over hacking accusation", The Guardian, 24 July 2013
  19. ^ Worstall, Tim (25 December 2013). "The Best Story Yet About The UK's Online Porn Filters". Forbes. 
  20. ^ "FSC's Duke Argues Against Censorship at UK Roundtable". Adult Video News. Retrieved 9 March 2014. 
  21. ^ "Boris on Best Behaviour…". Guido Fawkes. 8 October 2012. On Radio 5 this morning:
    Victoria Derbyshire: What is puzzling is, under Labour debt equals bad, under the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats national debt equals?
    Claire Perry: We have cut Labour's deficit Victoria by a quarter
    Derbyshire: I’m talking about debt
    Perry: Well it is the same thing
    Derbyshire: It is not the same thing
  22. ^ "Question Time: as it happened 26th October". The Daily Telegraph. 26 October 2012. 
  23. ^ McSmith, Andy (October 2012). "If it's worth saying George, say it thrice". Independent. Retrieved 10 February 2017. 
  24. ^ England, Charlotte (8 February 2017). "Hard Brexiteers are like jihadis, says Tory MP". Independent. Retrieved 10 February 2017. 
  25. ^ Hughes, Laura (7 February 2017). "Brexit debate and vote: MPs reject rebel amendment calling for parliament to have final approval on EU deal". Telegraph. Retrieved 10 February 2017. 
  26. ^ "Claire Perry, MP for Devizes - Fascinating to find out what changes are afoot". Newsquest. 24 October 2013. Retrieved 19 September 2015. 

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Michael Ancram
Member of Parliament for Devizes
Preceded by
Stephen Hammond
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport
Succeeded by
Paul Maynard