|Member of Parliament
for Portsmouth North
2 May 1997 – 11 April 2005
|Preceded by||Peter Griffiths|
|Succeeded by||Sarah McCarthy-Fry|
|Born||Sydney Norman John Rapson
17 April 1942
Isle of Wight, England, UK
Sydney Norman John Rapson (born 17 April 1942, Isle of Wight) is a Labour politician in the United Kingdom who stood down in 2005.
He moved with his family to the Paulsgrove area of Portsmouth as a young child, where he attended Paulsgrove Modern (now King Richard School). After leaving school he worked in the aeronautical industry for nearly forty years, and became a long serving councillor. He was elected as the Labour Member of Parliament (MP) for Portsmouth North at the 1997 general election until he retired in 2005. He was succeeded by Sarah McCarthy-Fry MP.
He had stronger trade union credentials than many of the 1997 intake, having spent many years as an Amalgamated Engineering and Electrical Union activist and convener, which also gave him the strong interest in defence, the hallmark of his parliamentary career. He joined the Commons Defence Select Committee after the 2001 election. He generally maintained a low profile around Parliament; he rarely contributed to debates and sat for four years on the low-key Accommodation and Works Committee.
Rapson appeared in the controversial TV programme Brass Eye, in which he was duped into presenting a segment on "trust-me trousers", supposedly worn by paedophiles and inflated to hide an erection. Rapson was also recorded stating: "using an area of the Internet the size of Ireland, paedophiles can make your keyboard release toxic vapours that can make you more suggestible". His complaints, and those of fellow MP Barbara Follett, that they had been duped into appearing on the programme, were thrown out by the Broadcasting Standards Commission in January 2002.
Rapson has two children and four grandchildren.
- Deputy Leader of the Council and Lord Mayor of the City per Voices from Paulsgrove. Lee, S & Stedman, J (eds; 1992, Portsmouth City Council Leisure Department); ISBN 1-870412-15-X
- Sarah Lyall (3 August 2001). "London Journal; TV Hoist by Own Sendup: Pedophilia Is Explosive". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 15 July 2014. Retrieved 9 July 2014.
- Profile, books.google.co.uk; accessed 9 July 2014.
- Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by Syd Rapson
- Rapson political profile, theyworkforyou.com; accessed 9 July 2014.
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
|Member of Parliament for Portsmouth North
1997 – 2005