Stephen Lloyd

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Stephen Lloyd
Stephen Lloyd MP Eastbourne.jpg
Member of Parliament
for Eastbourne
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 58)
Mombasa, Kenya Colony
Nationality British
Political party Liberal Democrats
Alma mater St. George's College, Weybridge
Occupation Business Development Director

Stephen Anthony Christopher Lloyd[1] (born 15 June 1957) is a British Liberal Democrat politician and business development consultant. He is the Former Member of Parliament (MP) for Eastbourne after the Conservative candidate, Caroline Ansell, succeeded him on the 7th May 2015. He was the Liberal Democrats' spokesperson for Northern Ireland in the House of Commons.

He announced he would retire from politics after his defeat in 2015. He said he "never had as much fun as being MP for Eastbourne and Willingdon".[2]

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[3] at St. George's College, Weybridge. Prior to becoming a Member of Parliament, Lloyd worked in business for over 20 years.[4] From 1998 to 2005, he worked as a business development director at The Grass Roots Group. After departing Grass Roots, Lloyd joined the Federation of Small Businesses as a business development consultant until his election to parliament in 2010.[5]

Electoral history[edit]

Lloyd contested the safe Conservative seat of Beaconsfield at the 2001 general election as the Liberal Democrat Party candidate.

In 2002, Lloyd was selected to contest the Liberal Democrat target seat of Eastbourne, defeating future Liberal Democrat parliamentary colleagues Duncan Hames and Tessa Munt. In the 2005 general election, despite increasing the Liberal Democrat vote, Lloyd lost to incumbent Conservative Party MP Nigel Waterson by a margin of less than 1%. Lloyd subsequently continued to campaign locally on numerous issues such as leading the fight to oppose plans to build a new B&Q megastore in Sovereign Harbour, which was subsequently refused by the planning committee of Eastbourne Borough Council in October 2005.[6]

In the 2010 General Election, Lloyd's campaign centred on local issues, his record of supporting Eastbourne residents and the town, and highlighting Nigel Waterson's expenses claims (such as his second home, which was 60 miles from the constituency in Beckenham, Kent).[7] 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.[8] On 7 May, Lloyd was elected Member of Parliament for Eastbourne with a majority of 3,435.[9][10]

Defeated Conservative Nigel Waterson subsequently took legal action over the contents of Lloyd's leaflets distributed during the 2010 general election that described Waterson as an "expenses scandal MP."[11] 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 and overturned the original judgment.[12][13]

Lloyd lost his seat at Eastbourne to the Conservative candidate, Caroline Ansell, by 733 votes at the general election on the 7th May 2015.[14]

Member of Parliament[edit]

Lloyd was elected to the House of Commons Work and Pensions Select Committee in 2010. 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.[15] He campaigned for concessions from the Department for Work and Pensions in relation to Personal Independence Payment descriptors to ensure that people across the with reduced mobility would still be entitled to their Motability vehicles.[16]

He also 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.[17]

Lloyd served as chair of a number of all-party parliamentary groups including for Citizens Advice, microfinance, apprenticeships and further education and skills. He was also 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.[18] 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.[19] The chair of the Religious Education Council in The Times praised him as a "key player" in promoting the importance of effective RE teaching in schools.[20]

In January 2014, Lloyd was appointed as Parliamentary Private Secretary to Energy and Climate Change Secretary, Ed Davey.[21] He resigned from 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.[22]

Lloyd has argued that by entering the coaltion government, the Liberal Democrats "saved the country" but "killed themselves"[23] He rarely rebelled against the government, but voted against tuition fee increases,[24] which he later said the party "should have died in a ditch" to defend their position on.[23]

MP's Commission and local activity[edit]

Lloyd created the 'MP's Commission', composed of local business and community leaders in his Eastbourne constituency upon entering parliament. Its initiatives have included bringing back the Eastbourne 'Sunshine' Carnival;[25] and organising a procurement conference to encourage further economic cooperation between the private sector and major public sector bodies in the town.[26] Lloyd also 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 Prime Minister David Cameron.[27]

Lloyd's local work has captured the attention of the national press, with The Guardian claiming that "his toil has yielded high levels of recognition and support, some of it close to admiration." [28] whilst 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."[29] He has also been associated with lobbying for additional funds for local housing projects[30] and supporting negotiations over the regeneration Eastbourne’s Arndale shopping centre.[31]

He also supported appeals made by the grandparents of a five-year-old constituent who died in his constituency when they were denied visas for her funeral, offering to personally guarantee their return.[32] [33]

In May 2014, Lloyd was awarded the Grassroot Diplomat Initiative Honouree for the “100 apprenticeships in 100 days” campaign.[34] The campaign aimed to get 100 apprenticeships for trainees living in and around Eastbourne, within 100 days. Its success, 181 apprentices in the 100 days, led to Eastbourne recruiting 3,000 apprentices following the 2010 general election, lowering youth unemployment by 14%.

Post-parliamentary career[edit]

After leaving Parliament, Lloyd was appointed business development director at West End, an international event, broadcast, multi-media communications and exhibition company based in his former constituency. [35]

On his appointment, Lloyd said that "politics is all about winning people’s hearts and minds by conveying ideas clearly and with passion, and that’s very much what West End does. A big part of what I loved about being an MP was being able to solve people’s problems. The difference with West End is that we find solutions to corporate challenges rather than personal ones." [36]


  1. ^ "LIST OF MEMBERS RETURNED TO SERVE IN PARLIAMENT AT THE GENERAL ELECTION 2010". Archived from the original on 6 October 2010. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  2. ^ "VIDEO: Retiring Eastbourne MP Stephen Lloyd said “it’s been a real pleasure”". Eastbourne Herald. 8 May 2015. Retrieved 9 May 2015. 
  3. ^ "The Class of 2010" (Weber Shandwick/Total Politics guide), Biteback Publishing, 2010, p. 175-6.
  4. ^ "Stephen Lloyd MP – MP for Eastbourne and Willingdon". Archived from the original on 8 December 2010. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  5. ^ Stephen Lloyd, Eastbourne Liberal Democrats, 7 May 2010 
  6. ^ Ryan, Siohan (14 October 2005). "Cheers as megastore plan is thrown out". The Argus. 
  7. ^ Asthana, Anushka (14 March 2010). "Lib Dems adapt their message to bridge Britain's class divide". The Observer. 
  8. ^ Swaine, Jon (6 May 2010). "Lend us your votes, Clegg begs waverers in the key marginal seats". The Daily Telegraph. 
  9. ^ Eastbourne result, General Election 2010, BBC Online Network, 7 May 2010 
  10. ^ Lib Dem Lloyd sweeps to victory in Eastbourne, Eastbourne Herald, 7 May 2010 
  11. ^ Gardner, Bill (9 December 2011). "Court rules Lib Dem leaflet was defamatory". The Argus. 
  12. ^ "Eastbourne MP wins appeal over libel case". Eastbourne Herald. 28 February 2013. 
  13. ^ "Waterson v Lloyd MP & Anor [2013] EWCA Civ 136". 28 February 2013. 
  14. ^ "Eastbourne Parliamentary constituency". BBC News. Retrieved 8 April 2015. 
  15. ^ Stratton, Allegra (20 December 2010). "Labour courts Lib Dem in benefit vote". 
  16. ^ Getting loud about PIP, Multiple Sclerosis Society, 8 February 2013 
  17. ^ Visa change threatens Sussex language schools, BBC News, 2 August 2010 
  18. ^ Register of All-Party Groups (PDF), Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards, 1 February 2013 
  19. ^ Latest APPG News, Religious Education Council of England and Wales 
  20. ^ Letters to the Editor: Faith schools and true freedom of thought, The Times, 25 November 2014 
  21. ^
  22. ^ MP quits his top government job in row over A27, Eastbourne Herald, 12 December 2014 
  23. ^ a b Cole, Moreton (15 March 2015). "Stephen Lloyd: The Lib Dems 'saved the country, but we destroyed ourselves'". Independent. Retrieved 1 April 2015. 
  24. ^ "Stephen Lloyd". Public Whip. Retrieved 1 April 2015. 
  25. ^ Carnival fever marks Sunshine Carnival, Eastbourne Herald, 6 June 2012 
  26. ^ Business event hailed a success, Eastbourne Herald, 21 January 2011 
  27. ^ Prime Minister heaps praise on Eastbourne, Eastbourne Herald, 4 November 2011 
  28. ^ Behr, Rafael (30 July 2014). "The Lib Dems could survive in government by going back to their roots". The Guardian. 
  29. ^ Patterson, Christina (10 December 2011). "Can British politicians win back our respect?". The Independent. 
  30. ^ Partners Celebrate £4 Million Funding, Eastbourne Homes, February 2011 
  31. ^ Good news for shops development in town, Eastbourne Herald, 25 May 2012 
  32. ^ Andrea Gada’s parents write to PM after funeral visa plea is rejected, The Guardian, 20 January 2015 
  33. ^ Fight goes on for relatives funeral visas, Eastbourne Herald, 20 January 2015 
  34. ^ "Grassroot Diplomat Who's Who". Grassroot Diplomat. 15 March 2015. Retrieved 27 April 2015. 
  35. ^ Meet the team, West End 
  36. ^ Former MP Stephen Lloyd lands new job, Eastbourne Herald, 23 June 2015 

External links[edit]

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