Roger Berry

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Roger Berry
Member of Parliament
for Kingswood
In office
9 April 1992 – 12 April 2010
Preceded byRobert Hayward
Succeeded byChris Skidmore
Personal details
Born (1948-07-04) 4 July 1948 (age 70)
Huddersfield
NationalityBritish
Political partyLabour
Spouse(s)Alison Delyth
RelationsRuth Berry (Mother)
Alma materUniversity of Bristol
University of Sussex

Dr Roger Leslie Berry (born 4 July 1948) is a British Labour Party politician, who was the Member of Parliament (MP) for Kingswood from the 1992 general election ending at the 2010 general election.

Early life[edit]

Roger Berry was born in 1948 in Huddersfield and educated at the Dalton County Primary School on Mayfield Avenue in Huddersfield; Huddersfield New College; the University of Bristol, where he obtained a BSc in Economics in 1970; and the University of Sussex where he was awarded a DPhil in Economics in 1977.[1] Berry lectured in Economics at the School of African and Asian Studies in London from 1973–4; Institute of Development Studies at the University of Sussex from 1973–4; the University of Papua New Guinea from 1974–8; and the University of Bristol from 1978–92. He was elected as a councillor to the Avon County Council in 1981, becoming the deputy in 1985 and the group leader in from 1986–92; he stood down from the council in 1993.

Parliamentary career[edit]

Berry contested Weston-super-Mare at the 1983 General Election but was defeated by Jerry Wiggin. Berry also unsuccessfully fought the seat of Bristol for the European Parliament in 1984.

Berry was selected to contest the marginal seat of Kingswood at the 1987 General Election and was defeated by Robert Hayward by over 4,000 votes. Berry again contested Kingswood against Hayward at the 1992 General Election and this time was victorious, winning the seat with a majority of 2,370. He made his maiden speech on 10 June 1992.

Berry was a frequent "rebel" against the Labour government since 1997. He was a Member of the Trade and Industry Committee. On 17 January 2007, he criticised the government for halting a corruption inquiry into arms sales to Saudi Arabia, saying it would do irreparable damage to Britain's reputation.[2]

In December 2007 Berry added his name to a petition to save the threatened Cadbury's Somerdale Factory from demolition. The petition urges for English Heritage to protect the historic birthplace of modern chocolate production.[3]

Early on in his parliamentary career, Berry became known as a disability rights activist, and was Secretary and Co-Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Disability Group.[4]

Berry lost his seat to Conservative Party candidate Chris Skidmore in the 2010 General Election.[5] His unseating was the result of a swing of nearly 10% in favour of the Tories, with Labour Party officials blaming his defeat on a restructuring of constituency boundaries which were seen to favour the Tory vote.[6]

Since losing his seat, Berry has become a Trustee of the charity Disability Rights UK.[4] and is Chair of the Avon & Bristol Law Centre.[7]

Personal life[edit]

He married Alison Delyth in December 1996 in Pontypridd.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Roger Berry MP – Biography". Archived from the original on 17 June 2008.
  2. ^ "Watchdog chief warns Saudi arms probe 'must be re-opened'". Evening Standard. 17 January 2007. Archived from the original on 6 May 2013.
  3. ^ "Save Our Somerdale". Thinking Differently Ltd. 13 December 2007. Archived from the original on 7 April 2008.
  4. ^ a b "Trustees". Disability Rights UK. Retrieved 30 July 2014.
  5. ^ "Election 2010-Constituency:Kingswood". BBC. 6 May 2010.
  6. ^ "Roger Berry ousted in Kingswood in huge vote swing to Tories | Bath News". This is Bath. 7 May 2010. Retrieved 4 October 2012.
  7. ^ ablc.org.uk

External links[edit]

News items[edit]