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Iain Wright MP

Assumed office 
9 June 2009
Prime Minister Gordon Brown
Preceded by Sarah McCarthy-Fry (as PUS for Schools and Learners)

Member of Parliament
for Hartlepool
Assumed office 
8 September 2004
Preceded by Peter Mandelson
Majority 7,478 (21.1%)

Born 9 May 1972 (1972-05-09) (age 37)
Nationality British
Political party Labour
Spouse(s) Tiffiny Wright
Alma mater University College London

Iain David Wright (born 9 May 1972) is a British Labour politician, currently Member of Parliament for Hartlepool and Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State with responsibility for apprenticeships and 14-19 reform in the Department for Children, Schools and Families. He entered Parliament following a by-election in September 2004 necessitated by the resignation of Peter Mandelson to become a European Commissioner.


Early life

Wright was born in Hartlepool and graduated with a BA in 1994 and MA in 1995 in history from University College London. That year he joined the Labour Party and was elected as an officer of Cleveland and Richmond Young Labour. He worked as a chartered accountant for Deloitte & Touche from 1996-2003 and for the One NorthEast RDA from 2003-4 before his election. He was elected as a councillor for the Rift House ward of Hartlepool Borough Council in 2002, and a served on the council's Cabinet with responsibility for performance management.

Parliamentary career

He was the only Hartlepool member on the shortlist when Peter Mandelson stepped down as Labour MP for the town in September 2004 and was easily selected as the Labour Party candidate for the by-election; during the later stages of the campaign, three local members - one of whom featured in Conservative Party leaflets and another of whom had earlier failed to win the nomination - were reported in the Guardian newspaper (which subsequently endorsed Liberal Democrat rival Jody Dunn) to have been unhappy that no other local candidate had been available. The Labour Party dismissed the claims as having come from the "usual suspects". One subsequently apologised and another was expelled.[1]

During the campaign Wright highlighted the Labour government's controversial policies for tackling anti-social behaviour as well as the Liberal Democrats' refusal to support such measures in Parliament and stressed his local origins, in contrast to his main rival's. On polling day (30 September 2004), Wright was elected with a majority of 2,033, reduced from Mandelson's majority of 14,571.

The campaign was unusually long for British by-elections - effectively having begun on 22 July (the day Peter Mandelson announced his intention to become a European Commissioner) - 71 days before polling day itself.

His first act as an MP was to actively campaign for the proposed North East Regional Assembly in the referendum held in November 2004. The proposal for an assembly was rejected by 78% to 22%.

Wright was re-elected in the May 2005 General Election with an increased majority of 7,478. In June 2005, he was appointed as Parliamentary Private Secretary to Health Minister Rosie Winterton, a role he resigned from on 7 September 2006.[2]

In 2006, he became Chairman of Labour Friends of Israel. He returned to Government in July 2007 as Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State in the Department for Communities and Local Government, before moving to the Department for Children, Schools and Families in the June 2009 reshuffle. In May 2009 he was implicated in the MPs' expenses row. [3]

Personal life

He married Tiffiny Shanley in November 1995 in Hartlepool. They have three sons and one daughter.


External links


News items

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Peter Mandelson
Member of Parliament for Hartlepool


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