Stephen Lloyd

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Stephen Lloyd
Stephen Lloyd MP Eastbourne.jpg
Member of Parliament
for Eastbourne
Assumed office
8 June 2017
Preceded by Caroline Ansell
Majority 1,609 (2.8%)
In office
6 May 2010 – 30 March 2015
Preceded by Nigel Waterson
Succeeded by Caroline Ansell
Personal details
Born (1957-06-15) 15 June 1957 (age 60)
Mombasa, Kenya Colony
Nationality British
Political party Liberal Democrats
Domestic partner Cherine Maskill (2003-present)[1]
Alma mater St. George's College, Weybridge
Occupation Business Development Director

Stephen Anthony Christopher Lloyd[2] (born 15 June 1957) is a British Liberal Democrat politician and current MP for the constituency of Eastbourne in the House of Commons.[3]

Born in Kenya, Lloyd was privately educated in Surrey, before working first as a commodity broker and then in business development roles. He moved to Eastbourne to launch a political career, becoming the Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate and then MP for the town.

First elected in the 2010 general election, he served for all five years of the 2010-15 UK Parliament and supported the Cameron–Clegg coalition. Having lost his seat in the 2015 general election, Lloyd went on to regain it at the 2017 general election.

Early life and career[edit]

Lloyd was born and brought up in the coastal city of Mombasa, Kenya, but was educated in the UK from the age of eight[4] at St. George's College, Weybridge in Surrey.

Lloyd is hearing-impaired. At the age of six, having contracted measles, Lloyd lost all hearing in his left ear, retaining only partial hearing in his right.[5]

Prior to becoming a Member of Parliament, Lloyd worked in business for over 20 years.[6]

From 1977 to 1980, Lloyd worked as a commodity broker for Cominco.[7]

From 1998 to 2005, Lloyd worked as a business development director at the Grass Roots Group.

From 2005 to 2010, Lloyd worked for the Federation of Small Businesses as a business development consultant.[8]

Political career[edit]

2001 General Election[edit]

Lloyd campaigned to be the Member of Parliament for Beaconsfield in Buckinghamshire at the 2001 General Election, standing as the Liberal Democrat candidate. Lloyd was beaten by the Conservative Party candidate.

2005 General Election[edit]

In 2002, Lloyd was selected by the Liberal Democrats to be their next candidate for the constitutency of Eastbourne in East Sussex. As a high target seat for the party, selection was competitive and he beat future parliamentary colleagues Duncan Hames and Tessa Munt to the pick. Lloyd spent the next three years becoming engaged in local causes, in preparation for the next general election.

In the 2005 General Election, Lloyd lost to the incumbent Conservative Party MP Nigel Waterson. The Liberal Democrats had increased their share of the local vote, by 1.8% on 2010, but Lloyd still lost by a margin of 2.4%.

Lloyd continued to campaign locally for various causes, including leading opposition to plans to build a new B&Q megastore in Sovereign Harbour, which was subsequently refused by the planning committee of the Liberal Democrat-controlled Eastbourne Borough Council in October 2005.[9]

2010 General Election[edit]

In the 2010 General Election, Lloyd's campaign centred on local issues, his record of supporting Eastbourne residents, and the highlighting of the expenses claims of his Conservative Party opponent, Nigel Waterson. He also asked to be lent votes by local supporters of the Labour and Green parties.[10] Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg hosted his eve of poll rally, at which former Conservative MP Ernle Money, who had moved to Eastbourne, pledged his support to Lloyd.[11]

On 7 May, Lloyd was elected the MP for Eastbourne with a majority of 3,435 votes.[12][13]

Waterson subsequently sued Lloyd for libel over the contents of Lloyd's election leaflets, which had called Waterson an "expenses scandal MP".[14] On 9 December 2011, the High Court ruled that Lloyd had defamed Waterson. Lloyd appealed, and on 28 February 2013 the Court of Appeal found in Lloyd's favour, overturning the original judgment.[15][16]

2010-2015 Parliamentary roles[edit]

From 2010 to 2015, Lloyd served as the Liberal Democrats' spokesperson for Northern Ireland in the House of Commons.

From 2010 to 2015, Lloyd served on the Work and Pensions Select Committee in the House of Commons. He was thought by the Labour opposition to be wavering about supporting changes to housing benefit presented to the committee, but declared that he supported the "direction of travel" of the government.[17] He campaigned for concessions from the Department for Work and Pensions in relation to Personal Independence Payment descriptors to ensure that people with reduced mobility would still be entitled to their Motability vehicles.[18]

In 2010, Lloyd lobbied the government to reconsider its reform to student visa regulations, which threatened the future of English language schools, arguing it was "nonsensical" to require overseas students to speak the language before they came to study it.[19]

From 2010 to 2015, Lloyd served as Chair of a number of all-party parliamentary groups including those for Citizens Advice, microfinance, apprenticeships and further education and skills. He also served as Vice Chair of the APPGs on deafness, mental health, dementia, ageing and older people, town centre management, multiple sclerosis, trading standards, pharmacy, and justice for Equitable Life policyholders.[20] Additionally, the Federation of Small Businesses and City and Guilds of London Institute invited him to be their respective champions in parliament.

Lloyd founded the All Party Parliamentary Group on religious education in schools in 2010. He has led campaigns to improve, encourage and support RE teaching of the world's major faiths, and of the non-religious, in schools in England and Wales.[21] The chair of the Religious Education Council praised him in The Times as a "key player" in promoting the importance of effective RE teaching in schools.[22]

From January to December 2014, Lloyd served as Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change Ed Davey.[23] Lloyd resigned this position in December 2014 over his "profound disappointment" that the Department for Transport's new road investment strategy did not meet the demands of a local campaign to properly improve the A27 road.[24]

From 2010 to 2015, Lloyd rarely rebelled against the Coalition government on any parliamentary matter. Notable exceptions included his vote against tuition fee increases,[25] which he later said the party "should have died in a ditch" to defend their position on.[1] Lloyd has argued that by entering the 2010-15 Coalition government, the Liberal Democrats "saved the country" but "killed themselves".[1]

2015 General Election[edit]

Lloyd lost the 2015 General Election to the new Conservative Party candidate, Caroline Ansell. Ansell's winning margin was 733 votes, again making the seat a key marginal.[26]

In May 2015, Lloyd announced he would retire from politics.[27] He then took a job as business development director for West End Studios, an event and exhibition company based in Eastbourne.[28]

In July 2016, Lloyd announced that he would stand again as the Liberal Democrat candidate at the next general election, after all.[29] He attributed his change of mind to a petition created by local supporters two months before, which had asked him to stand again.[30]

2017 General Election[edit]

Lloyd stood in the 2017 General Election and won, beating the incumbent Caroline Ansell by 1,609 votes.[31]

Local causes and campaigns[edit]

In 2010, Lloyd created an 'MP's Commission', composed of local business and community leaders in his Eastbourne constituency. Its initiatives included bringing back the Eastbourne 'Sunshine' Carnival;[32] and organising a procurement conference to encourage further economic cooperation between the private sector and major public sector bodies in the town.[33]

In 2011, Lloyd developed a successful local apprenticeship initiative, aiming to recruit 100 apprenticeships in 100 days in Eastbourne. The initiative ultimately created 181 apprenticeships and received praise from David Cameron.[34] In 2014, Lloyd was awarded the Grassroot Diplomat Initiative Honouree for this work.[35]

In 2011, Lloyd was also associated with lobbying for additional funds for local housing projects[36] and supporting negotiations over the regeneration of Eastbourne’s Arndale shopping centre.[37]

In 2014, The Guardian reported that Lloyd's "toil has yielded high levels of recognition and support, some of it close to admiration."[38] Christina Patterson in The Independent remarked that "a political system that can produce elected representatives like this may well be as good as it gets."[39]

In 2015, Lloyd supported appeals made by the parents of a five-year-old girl who died in his constituency, when the child's grandparents were denied visas to enter Britain to attend her funeral. He offered to personally guarantee their return to Zimbabwe.[40][41]


  1. ^ a b c Cole, Moreton (15 March 2015). "Stephen Lloyd: The Lib Dems 'saved the country, but we destroyed ourselves'". Independent. Retrieved 1 April 2015. 
  2. ^ "No. 59418". The London Gazette. 13 May 2010. p. 8741. 
  3. ^ Parliament UK
  4. ^ "The Class of 2010" (Weber Shandwick/Total Politics guide), Biteback Publishing, 2010, p. 175-6.
  5. ^ [1] Youtube broadcast, Experience of Disability in Parliament.
  6. ^ "Stephen Lloyd MP – MP for Eastbourne and Willingdon". Archived from the original on 8 December 2010. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  7. ^ ‘LLOYD, Stephen’, Who's Who 2017, A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc, 2017
  8. ^ Stephen Lloyd, Eastbourne Liberal Democrats, 7 May 2010 
  9. ^ Ryan, Siohan (14 October 2005). "Cheers as megastore plan is thrown out". The Argus. 
  10. ^ Asthana, Anushka (14 March 2010). "Lib Dems adapt their message to bridge Britain's class divide". The Observer. 
  11. ^ Swaine, Jon (6 May 2010). "Lend us your votes, Clegg begs waverers in the key marginal seats". The Daily Telegraph. 
  12. ^ Eastbourne result, General Election 2010, BBC Online Network, 7 May 2010 
  13. ^ Lib Dem Lloyd sweeps to victory in Eastbourne, Eastbourne Herald, 7 May 2010 
  14. ^ Gardner, Bill (9 December 2011). "Court rules Lib Dem leaflet was defamatory". The Argus. 
  15. ^ "Eastbourne MP wins appeal over libel case". Eastbourne Herald. 28 February 2013. 
  16. ^ "Waterson v Lloyd MP & Anor [2013] EWCA Civ 136". 28 February 2013. 
  17. ^ Stratton, Allegra (20 December 2010). "Labour courts Lib Dem in benefit vote". 
  18. ^ Getting loud about PIP, Multiple Sclerosis Society, 8 February 2013 
  19. ^ Visa change threatens Sussex language schools, BBC News, 2 August 2010 
  20. ^ Register of All-Party Groups (PDF), Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards, 1 February 2013 
  21. ^ Latest APPG News, Religious Education Council of England and Wales 
  22. ^ Letters to the Editor: Faith schools and true freedom of thought, The Times, 25 November 2014 
  23. ^ "Stephen Lloyd appointed PPS to Ed Davey". 9 January 2014. Archived from the original on 22 January 2014. 
  24. ^ MP quits his top government job in row over A27, Eastbourne Herald, 12 December 2014 
  25. ^ "Stephen Lloyd". Public Whip. Retrieved 1 April 2015. 
  26. ^ "Eastbourne Parliamentary constituency". BBC News. Retrieved 8 April 2015. 
  27. ^ "VIDEO: Retiring Eastbourne MP Stephen Lloyd said "it’s been a real pleasure"". Eastbourne Herald. 8 May 2015. Retrieved 9 May 2015. 
  28. ^ Meet the team, West End 
  29. ^ BREAKING: Former Eastbourne MP makes announcement on his political future, Eastbourne Herald, 15 July 2016 
  30. ^ Petition calls on former Eastbourne MP to stand again, Eastbourne Herald, 26 May 2016 
  31. ^ "Lloyd victorious at Eastbourne election". 
  32. ^ Carnival fever marks Sunshine Carnival, Eastbourne Herald, 6 June 2012 
  33. ^ Business event hailed a success, Eastbourne Herald, 21 January 2011 
  34. ^ Prime Minister heaps praise on Eastbourne, Eastbourne Herald, 4 November 2011 
  35. ^ "Grassroot Diplomat Who's Who". Grassroot Diplomat. 15 March 2015. Retrieved 27 April 2015. 
  36. ^ Partners Celebrate £4 Million Funding, Eastbourne Homes, February 2011 
  37. ^ Good news for shops development in town, Eastbourne Herald, 25 May 2012 
  38. ^ Behr, Rafael (30 July 2014). "The Lib Dems could survive in government by going back to their roots". The Guardian. 
  39. ^ Patterson, Christina (10 December 2011). "Can British politicians win back our respect?". The Independent. 
  40. ^ Andrea Gada’s parents write to PM after funeral visa plea is rejected, The Guardian, 20 January 2015 
  41. ^ Fight goes on for relatives funeral visas, Eastbourne Herald, 20 January 2015 

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Nigel Waterson
Member of Parliament for Eastbourne
Succeeded by
Caroline Ansell
Preceded by
Caroline Ansell
Member of Parliament for Eastbourne