Julian Brazier

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Sir Julian Brazier
Julian Brazier solo.jpg
Minister of State for Reserves[1]
In office
14 July 2014 – 16 July 2016
Prime Minister David Cameron
Preceded by Anna Soubry
Succeeded by Mark Lancaster
Member of Parliament
for Canterbury
In office
11 June 1987 – 8 June 2017
Preceded by David Crouch
Succeeded by Rosie Duffield
Personal details
Born (1953-07-24) 24 July 1953 (age 65)
Dartford, Kent, England
Nationality British
Political party Conservative
Spouse(s) Katherine Elizabeth Blagden
Children 3
Alma mater Brasenose College, Oxford, London Business School
Awards Territorial Decoration
Website Official website
Military service
Allegiance United Kingdom
Service/branch British Army
Years of service 1972–1985
Rank Captain
Unit Special Air Service

Sir Julian William Hendy Brazier TD (born 24 July 1953) is a British Conservative Party politician. He was the Member of Parliament (MP) for Canterbury from 1987 to 2017.

He was a shadow transport minister until May 2010, with responsibility for aviation and shipping, and is a member of the Conservative Christian Fellowship. He was appointed as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Ministry of Defence in the reshuffle on 15 July 2014, and retained the position after holding his seat in the 2015 general election. Following the formation of Theresa May's government in July 2016 he returned to the backbenches but, in what was arguably the most shocking result of the night, Brazier lost his seat to Labour by 187 votes in 2017.

Early life and career[edit]

Born into a military family, his father being a lieutenant colonel, Brazier was educated at two independent schools: the Dragon School in Oxford and Wellington College in the village of Crowthorne in Berkshire. He then went to Brasenose College, Oxford, graduating with a BA in mathematics and philosophy, later promoted to an Oxford MA. He was the President of the Oxford University Conservative Association in 1973. He attended the London Business School.

Brazier joined the Territorial Army aged 19 in 1972 and served for 13 years, five of which were with 21 SAS(R).[2] He was awarded the Territorial Decoration in 1993. He was employed by Chartered Consolidated Ltd between 1975 and 1984, being involved in economic research from 1975 to 1977 and corporate finance from 1977 to 1981, and was on the executive committee of the board from 1981 to 1984, when he became a management consultant with HB Maynard International,[3] now owned by Accenture.

Brazier contested the 1983 general election in Berwick-upon-Tweed, but was defeated by the Liberal MP Alan Beith by 8,215 votes. He contested the Conservative safe seat of Canterbury at the 1987 general election following the retirement of the sitting MP, Sir David Crouch. He held the seat with a majority of 14,891.[citation needed]

Parliamentary career[edit]

Brazier became the Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS) to Gillian Shepherd, the Minister of State at the Treasury. He remained Shepherd's PPS following the 1992 general election in her new capacity as the Secretary of State for Employment, but he resigned in 1993 as a protest against defence cuts. He was awarded the 'Backbencher of the Year' at the annual Spectator magazine awards in 1996. Following the 1997 general election, he became a member of the Defence Select Committee.[citation needed]

It was not until after the 2001 general election that Brazier was given a job by Iain Duncan Smith, then Leader of the Opposition, initially as an Opposition Whip in 2001, he became a spokesman on Work and Pensions in 2002.[citation needed]

He was briefly Home Affairs spokesman in 2003, before being moved later in the year by Michael Howard, who had succeeded Duncan Smith, to be a spokesman on International Affairs. Brazier remained on the frontbench after the 2005 general election as a spokesman on Transport.[citation needed]

Brazier was a member of the Cornerstone Group of Conservative MPs.[4] This group is considered to be on the right of the Conservative Party, and away from the more centrist direction of the leadership. As a practising Roman Catholic,[5] He is a social conservative. Brazier supported a bill put forth by Laurence Robertson in June 2005 that would have put heavy restraints on abortion.[6]

In 2008, he proposed a law that would allow parliament to ban films and games, even if the BBFC had approved them.[7] Unlike many Cornerstone members, Brazier does not belong to Better Off Out, which advocates EU withdrawal. However, in the run up to the 2016 EU membership referendum, Julian Brazier was in favour of leaving the EU.[8]

Because of his earlier career, Brazier has a special interest in the armed forces and was an advocate of military issues in the House of Commons. He was also a member of the Public Bill Committee for the Defence Reform Act 2014.[9]

In May 2014, he was one of eight candidates for the chairmanship of the House of Commons Defence Select Committee. Although unsuccessful, he came third on the first round, and was only eliminated after six rounds of voting.[10][11]

Brazier was shortlisted for the Grassroot Diplomat Initiative Award in 2015 for his work on promoting outdoor adventure in the face of Britain's growing compensation culture, and remains in the directory of the Grassroot Diplomat Who's Who publication.[12]

Brazier was knighted in the 2017 New Year Honours.[13] At the general election 2017, he narrowly lost his Canterbury seat to Labour's Rosie Duffield.[14]

Personal life[edit]

Julian Brazier married Katharine Elizabeth Blagden on 21 July 1984 in Hampshire. The couple have three sons (twins born July 1990, and another son born December 1992). His youngest son, John, was elected councillor for Westgate ward at the Canterbury City Council election, 2015. He is the son-in-law of Brigadier Paddy Blagden, a United Nations de-mining expert.

In February 2002, he was given a four-month suspended sentence after he crashed into and killed a motorcyclist in Italy on 29 August 2001.[15][16] Brazier had been driving on the wrong side of the road approaching a sharp bend when he hit a motorcyclist, 42-year-old Carlo Civitelli, near Siena. He used his TA training to give Civitelli first aid at the scene, but the man died three days later. Italian police found that Mr Civitelli's helmet was not properly fitted and that he was probably speeding. After the verdict, Brazier said in a statement: "I am still deeply saddened by the tragic consequences of my lapse of attention. My thoughts are with the Civitelli family whose reaction to the whole terrible business has been so generous". He also said "as a parent, I shall carry the memory of this man's death with me for the rest of my life."[15]


  1. ^ "About Julian". Retrieved 23 October 2016. 
  2. ^ Biography, julianbrazier.co.uk; accessed 2 January 2017. [self-published source]
  3. ^ "Accenture and H.B. Maynard Join Forces: Improving Workforce Performance for High Performers". Hbmaynard.com. Retrieved 23 April 2010. 
  4. ^ "About Us". The Cornerstone Group. Retrieved 17 May 2014. 
  5. ^ Greaves, Mark (14 May 2010). "Election ushers in new Catholic MPs". London, UK: Catholic Herald. Archived from the original on 19 May 2010. Retrieved 17 May 2010. 
  6. ^ "HCB33.book" (PDF). Retrieved 23 April 2010. 
  7. ^ "Why I want to legislate against video nasties". cornerstonegroup.wordpress.com. 27 February 2008. Retrieved 23 October 2016. 
  8. ^ "BRAZIER SUPPORTS BREXIT". Julian Brazier. Retrieved 13 April 2016. 
  9. ^ "House of Commons Public Bill Committee on the Defence Reform Bill 2013-14". Parliament.uk. Retrieved 17 September 2013. 
  10. ^ "Defence Committee Chair election: Rory Stewart MP elected" (PDF). parliament.uk. 14 May 2014. Retrieved 17 May 2014. 
  11. ^ "MP expenses: Who employs family members". The Telegraph. 3 July 2008. Retrieved 1 November 2011. 
  12. ^ "Grassroot Diplomat Who's Who". Grassroot Diplomat. 15 March 2015. Archived from the original on 20 May 2015. Retrieved 27 April 2015. 
  13. ^ "No. 61803". The London Gazette (Supplement). 31 December 2016. p. N2. 
  14. ^ "Canterbury parliamentary constituency - Election 2017 - BBC News". Bbc.co.uk. Retrieved 9 June 2017. 
  15. ^ a b "Tory MP tells of crash horror". BBC News. 7 September 2001. Retrieved 23 May 2010. 
  16. ^ "Tory MP guilty over road death". BBC News. 2 February 2002. Retrieved 23 May 2010. 

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
David Crouch
Member of Parliament for Canterbury
Succeeded by
Rosie Duffield