Paul Farrelly

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Paul Farrelly
Paul Farrelly, March 2010 1 cropped.jpg
Farrelly speaking at Newcastle-under-Lyme College in 2010.
Member of Parliament
for Newcastle-under-Lyme
Assumed office
7 June 2001
Preceded by Llin Golding
Majority 650 (1.5%)
Personal details
Born Christopher Paul Farrelly
(1962-03-02) 2 March 1962 (age 55)
Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire, England
Nationality British
Political party Labour
Spouse(s) Victoria Jane Perry
Alma mater St Edmund Hall, Oxford

Christopher Paul Farrelly (born 2 March 1962) is a British Labour Party politician and journalist, who has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for Newcastle-under-Lyme since 2001.

Early life[edit]

Farrelly was born in Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire, the son of an Irish gas pipe-laying foreman[citation needed] and a former nurse. He is the first MP born and bred in Newcastle to represent the constituency for well over a century.[citation needed]

He was educated at the Wolstanton Grammar School (which later became Marshlands Comprehensive High School) on Milehouse Lane in Newcastle-under-Lyme, before studying at St Edmund Hall, Oxford where he obtained a BA in PPE in 1984. After his education he worked at managerial level in the corporate finance department with Barclays de Zoete Wedd, and, in 1990 joined Reuters as a correspondent and news editor. Farrelly was appointed as the deputy business editor with the Independent on Sunday in 1995 before joining The Observer in 1997 as the City Editor, where he remained until his election to Westminster.[citation needed]

Parliamentary career[edit]

Farrelly unsuccessfully contested Chesham and Amersham at the 1997 General Election finishing in third place some 16,058 votes behind the sitting Conservative MP, Cheryl Gillan.

He was selected to contest his hometown seat of Newcastle-under-Lyme following the retirement of the Labour MP Llin Golding at the 2001 General Election, and he held the seat comfortably with a majority of 9,986 and remains the MP there. He made his maiden speech on 12 July 2001. In the House of Commons Farrelly has served on several select committees including the Science and Technology Committee, he has been a member of the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee since the 2005 General Election.

Before his election he had held elected office within the Hornsey and Wood Green Constituency Labour Party as well as in Newcastle-under-Lyme. A written Parliamentary question by Farrelly, answered on 19 October 2009, became the subject of debate as The Guardian newspaper was prevented from reporting on it by a court injunction that became known as a super-injunction.[1][2]

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of legislation to protect (a) whistleblowers and (b) press freedom following the injunctions obtained in the High Court by (i) Barclays and Freshfields solicitors on 19 March 2009 on the publication of internal Barclays reports documenting alleged tax avoidance schemes and (ii) Trafigura and Carter-Ruck solicitors on 11 September 2009 on the publication of the Minton report on the alleged dumping of toxic waste in the Ivory Coast, commissioned by Trafigura.


At the 2010 General Election, Paul Farrelly was returned to parliament with a majority of 1,552.

On 4 November 2010, Farrelly was involved in an altercation with a man during a karaoke night at the Houses of Parliament Sports and Social club, which resulted in Farrelly wrestling the man (named as Bjorn Hurrell) to the ground. The MP later claimed he was acting in self-defence.[4] Hurrell had been involved in a previous altercation which led to a four-month suspension of his Commons pass.[5]

Farrelly has also agreed to support the FairFuelUK campaign which is aiming to reduce or remove the fuel duty tax in the United Kingdom.

Farrelly has continually argued against the raising of tuition fees since entering Parliament in 2001[citation needed].

In July 2011 during the News International hacking scandal, Farrelly a member of the House of Commons Culture, Media & Sport Select Committee, which has been pursuing the scandal since 2007, took evidence from Rupert Murdoch, his son James and former NI Chief Executive and News of the World and Sun editor Rebekah Brooks.

On 7 December 2016 Farrelly voted against the triggering of Article 50 (the trigger for leaving the EU) despite the fact that 63% of his constituents voted in the referendum on EU membership to exit the EU.

Farrelly was one of 13 MPs to vote against triggering the 2017 General Election.[6]

Personal life[edit]

Farrelly has been married to Victoria Jane Perry since 1998, and they have a son and two daughters. He is a member of several organisations including Amnesty International, Liberty and Greenpeace.


  1. ^
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  3. ^
  4. ^ "Labour MP Paul Farrelly admits incident in Parliament". BBC News. 6 November 2010. 
  5. ^ [1]Charlotte Gill, Paul Bentley and Colin Fernandez (8 November 2010). "MP in Commons 'brawl' WILL face official Parliamentary inquiry". Daily Mail. 
  6. ^ "The 13 MPs who opposed snap general election". BBC News. British Broadcasting Corporation. 20 April 2017. Retrieved 20 April 2017. 

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Llin Golding
Member of Parliament for Newcastle-under-Lyme