||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (February 2010)|
|Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport|
7 October 2013
|Prime Minister||David Cameron|
|Preceded by||Norman Baker|
|Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury|
4 September 2012 – 7 October 2013
|Prime Minister||David Cameron|
|Preceded by||James Duddridge|
|Succeeded by||Karen Bradley|
|Member of Parliament
for Scarborough and Whitby
5 May 2005
|Preceded by||Lawrie Quinn|
|Member of the European Parliament
for Yorkshire and the Humber
15 July 1999 – 1 May 2004
|Preceded by||Position established|
|Succeeded by||Godfrey Bloom|
31 December 1956 |
Terrington, North Riding of Yorkshire, England
|Alma mater||Newcastle University|
Robert Goodwill (born 31 December 1956) is a British farmer and Conservative Party politician. He is the Member of Parliament (MP) for Scarborough and Whitby and a former Member of the European Parliament (MEP).
Goodwill was born in Terrington, North Riding of Yorkshire and was educated at the Quaker Bootham School in York, and the University of Newcastle upon Tyne where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in agriculture in 1979. He is a farmer of 250 acres (100 ha) of mainly arable land near Malton which has been in his family since 1850. He has been the managing director of Mowthorpe (UK) Ltd since 1995 which offers environmentally friendly burials in the North Yorkshire countryside .
Goodwill unsuccessfully contested Redcar at the 1992 general election where he finished second, some 11,577 votes behind the sitting Labour MP Mo Mowlam. He unsuccessfully contested Cleveland and Richmond at the 1994 European election. He again attempted to enter the House of Commons at the 1997 general election when he was selected for the marginally held Conservative seat of North West Leicestershire following the deselection of the sitting MP David Ashby. Goodwill was defeated by Labour's David Taylor by 13,219 votes. In 1998, he contested the Yorkshire South European Parliament by-election, but was again defeated.
He was elected as a Member of the European Parliament at the 1999 European Election for the Yorkshire and the Humber region, serving in Brussels and Strasbourg until the 2004 European election. He was Deputy Leader of the Conservative MEPs during his term.
He was elected to the House of Commons at the 2005 general election for Scarborough and Whitby, gaining the seat from Labour's Lawrie Quinn by just 1,245 votes. He made his maiden speech on 6 June 2005,  in which he boasted that his constituency is the setting for both the Yorkshire Television series Heartbeat at Goathland; and that the North Yorkshire Moors Railway has been used for the Hogwarts Express in the Harry Potter films. After spending 18 months as a member of the transport select committee, he was appointed a whip by David Cameron in 2006 and promoted to the post of shadow roads minister in the transport team in 2007. He was re-elected with an increased majority of 8,130 at the 2010 general election and appointed to the Government as a Whip with responsibility for Treasury and DEFRA business. Goodwill is secretary of the All Party Parliamentary Flag Group.
In the October 2013 ministerial reshuffle he became parliamentary under-secretary of state for transport, replacing Norman Baker.Goodwill was given responsibility for aviation policy Goodwill had previously established himself as a strong opponent of a third runway at Heathrow, inviting Greenpeace members to plant a tree in his constituency as a gesture of "solidarity" with opponents of Heathrow expansion.
In 2000 whilst working as a Conservative MEP, Goodwill sparked controversy when he was quoted as saying "I fly from Leeds/Bradford to Brussels and we get a set fee of around £500, but if I buy a cheaper ticket, economy class for about £160 and £250, I can pocket the difference and, as a capitalist, also as a British Conservative, I see it as a challenge to buy cheap tickets and make some profit on the system". Labour called this proof that sleaze was "alive and well" within the Conservative party whilst the Conservative Party itself condemned his actions saying "the party does not endorse the fiddling of expenses or the impression given that the system should be made available for personal profit". Goodwill later donated £2,000 to local charities following feedback from constituents.
In 2013, following on from a review of capital gains made by MPs from their tax-payer funded second homes, the IPSA ordered Goodwill to repay £4,963.39.
He married Maureen Short in November 1987 in North Yorkshire and they have two sons (born May 1989 and June 1991) and a daughter (born May 1994). He was once the chairman of the cereals and livestock committee of the North Yorkshire National Farmers Union 1986-8. He takes a keen interest in steam engines and owns several; he once brought an engine back from the former Czechoslovakia to restore it.
He stepped in to save the Scarborough Pleasure Ship, Coronia, in January 2011 so that the historic, Dunkirk-veteran vessel can continue to be based in the harbour there. He speaks French, German and some Russian.
- Woodland, Jenny (2011). Bootham School Register. York, England: BOSA.
- UK Parliament - Register of All Party Groups
- "Norman Baker leaves Transport Department in reshuffle". Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation. 9 October 2013.
- Morris, Nigel. "New aviation minister Robert Goodwill opposed third runway at Heathrow". The Independent. Retrieved 25 March 2015.
- Independent - Tory MEP admits he profited on expenses
- Yorkpress - Goodwill gesture
- Real Whitby - Pay-back time for Goodwill
- Robert Goodwill MP official site
- Robert Goodwill MP biography at the site of the Conservative Party
- Guardian Unlimited Politics - Ask Aristotle: Robert Goodwill MP
- TheyWorkForYou.com - Robert Goodwill MP
- The Public Whip - Robert Goodwill MP voting record
- BBC Politics page