Andrew Selous

Andrew Edmund Armstrong Selous /səˈl/ (born 27 April 1962)[1] is a Conservative Party politician in the United Kingdom who has been the Member of Parliament for South West Bedfordshire since 2001 general election.

Andrew Selous

Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Prisons and Probation
In office
16 July 2014  16 July 2016
Prime MinisterDavid Cameron
Preceded byJeremy Wright
Succeeded bySam Gyimah
Member of Parliament
for South West Bedfordshire
Assumed office
7 June 2001
Preceded byDavid Madel
Personal details
Born (1962-04-27) 27 April 1962
Marylebone, London, England
Political partyConservative
Spouse(s)Harriet Marston
Alma materEton College
London School of Economics
ProfessionBusiness, Industry, Trade
Military career
Allegiance United Kingdom
Service/branch British Army
Years of service1981-1996
Service number533612
UnitHonourable Artillery Company
Royal Regiment of Fusiliers

Early life

Selous was born in Marylebone to Mary (née Casey) and Gerald Selous.[2] He was educated at West Downs School, Eton College and the London School of Economics, receiving a BSc in Industry and Trade in 1984. Selous joined the Honourable Artillery Company in 1981 where he served as a soldier until receiving a commission in the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers in October 1989.[3] Selous was then transferred to the London Regiment in April 1993 before being placed in the Regular Army Reserve of Officers in January 1996.[4][5] From 1988 until 1994, he was a director of his family firm CNS Electronics (now CNS Farnell). From 1991 until 2001, he was an underwriter at Great Lakes Reinsurance (UK) PLC.

Parliamentary career

Selous was first elected to the House of Commons in 2001, and had previously contested Sunderland North seat in 1997. He is a director and prominent member of the Conservative Christian Fellowship.[6]

In 2006, Selous was promoted to Shadow Minister for Work and Pensions.[7]

In the Coalition government, he was the Parliamentary Private Secretary to Iain Duncan Smith, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, from 28 May 2010 to 16 July 2014.[8] On 16 July 2014, he was appointed as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State in the Ministry of Justice with responsibility for Prisons and Probation and retained this role following the 2015 general election.[9] However he was asked to step down from the government by Theresa May after she became Prime Minister in July 2016.[10]

He provoked ridicule by making a tweet (subsequently deleted) supporting the removal of benefit entitlement from non-English speakers: "Strongly support the loss of benefits unless claimants lean [sic] English." [11]

He also attracted criticism in 2014 for reportedly telling a meeting that "disabled people work harder because they're grateful to have a job", following a furore over Lord Freud's claim that some disabled people were not worth the minimum wage. Selous subsequently argued that he had simply been trying to convey the message that disabled people were valued by employers, and his observation that disabled people often work harder was supported by a spokesperson for Disability Rights UK.[12]

Selous chairs the All Party Parliamentary Group on Strengthening Couple Relationships, and argues that cross-party efforts to prevent family breakdown can relieve pressure on the care system.[13] He was opposed to the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013, arguing that it was directly contrary to what Jesus said.[14]

In terms of Selous’ voting history in Parliament, he regularly voted against human rights, equality & LGBT rights, as well as against funding to guarantee jobs for young people. Selous voted in favour of reducing welfare benefits for disabled people, increasing VAT and tuition fees, and ending financial support for young people in education.[15]

In terms of environmental issues, Selous almost always voted against measures to prevent climate change.[16]


  1. "Andrew Selous compared to 'Homosexuality - Equal rights'". Retrieved 26 June 2013.
  2. "Index entry". FreeBMD. ONS. Retrieved 20 December 2017.
  3. "No. 51942". The London Gazette (Supplement). 20 November 1989. p. 13430.
  4. "No. 53356". The London Gazette (Supplement). 28 June 1993. p. 10973.
  5. "No. 54328". The London Gazette (Supplement). 26 February 1996. p. 2933.
  6. "Andrew Selous". BBC News. 23 October 2002. Retrieved 26 June 2013.
  7. "UK Political Database: Andrew Selous". The Daily Telegraph. London. Archived from the original on 30 April 2010.
  8. Published on 28/05/2010 17:41 (28 May 2010). "Parliamentary post for SW Beds MP". Retrieved 26 June 2013.
  9. "UK Prime Minister on Twitter". Twitter.
  10. Published on 18/07/2016 17:41 (18 July 2016). "Andrew Selous asked to step down as Prisons Minister by Theresa May". Retrieved 8 August 2016.
  11. "Benefit claimants must 'lean English', says Tory MP Andrew Selous". Digital Spy. 26 June 2013.
  12. "Andrew Selous: 'Disabled are grateful so work harder,' says Tory minister". Independent. 19 October 2014. Retrieved 7 April 2015.
  13. Selous, Andrew (11 March 2014). "Comment: Silver splitters are putting significant pressure on care system, MP warns". Retrieved 7 April 2015.
  14. "Voices of dissent: Gay marriage opponents attack". Independent. 11 December 2012. Retrieved 7 April 2015.
  15. "Voting record - Andrew Selous, former MP, South West Bedfordshire". TheyWorkForYou. Retrieved 28 November 2019.
  16. "Andrew Selous, former MP, South West Bedfordshire". TheyWorkForYou. Retrieved 28 November 2019.

News items

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
David Madel
Member of Parliament for South West Bedfordshire
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