Sir Graham Stuart BradyMP (born 20 May 1967) is a British Conservative Party politician and the Member of Parliament (MP) for Altrincham and Sale West since 1997. He served as a Shadow Minister for Europe under four Conservative leaders before resigning in 2007 in protest at David Cameron's opposition to grammar schools. He succeeded Sir Michael Spicer as Chairman of the 1922 Committee on 26 May 2010. On 1 December 2010, Brady was voted "Backbencher of the Year" by The Spectator at their annual parliamentary awards.
|The Right Honourable|
Sir Graham Brady
Graham Brady in 2017
|Chairman of the 1922 Committee|
26 May 2010
|Preceded by||Sir Michael Spicer|
|Shadow Minister forEurope|
14 September 2004 – 29 May 2007
|Succeeded by||Mark Francois|
|Member of Parliament|
for Altrincham and Sale West
1 May 1997
|Preceded by||Fergus Montgomery|
|Born||Graham Stuart Brady|
20 May 1967
Salford, Lancashire, England
|Residence||Altrincham, Greater Manchester|
|Alma mater||St Aidan's College, Durham|
Brady was born on 20 May 1967 in Salford, Lancashire, England. He was educated at the Altrincham Grammar School for Boys, an all-boys grammar school in Altrincham. He read Law at St Aidan's College, University of Durham, and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree in 1989.
Brady was appointed a consultant in public relations with Shandwick plc in 1989. He joined the Centre for Policy Studies in 1990. He was appointed Director of public affairs at the Waterfront Partnership in 1992, where he remained until elected to Westminster in 1997.
While at Durham University, he was Chairman of the university's Conservative Association in 1987. He was elected Vice Chairman of the Berkshire East Conservative Association in 1992.
Member of Parliament
He was selected to contest the Altrincham and Sale Westparliamentary constituency following the retirement of the veteran Conservative MP Fergus Montgomery. Brady's constituency is considered to be a Conservative safe seat, having returned only Conservative MPs for the entire history of its existence. The 1997 general election proved to be a close battle, but Brady was elected as the Conservative MP with a majority of 1,505 votes. Aged 29, he was the youngest Conservative MP to be elected in 1997.
Brady made his maiden speech in the House of Commons on 2 June 1997. He became a Member of the Education and EmploymentSelect Committee. He became the Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS) to the Chairman of the Conservative Party, Michael Ancram in 1999. He was made an Opposition Whip by William Hague in 2000, and later in that year became an Opposition Spokesman on Education and Employment. Following a second Conservative defeat at the 2001 general election, Brady was the Opposition Spokesman on Education and Skills under the leadership of both Hague and Duncan Smith. He became the PPS to the Leader of the Opposition, Michael Howard in 2003, and an Opposition Spokesman on Foreign Affairs and Shadow Europe Minister in 2004.
Shadow Ministerial resignation
On 29 May 2007, Brady resigned his post as Shadow Minister for Europe in protest at Conservative leader David Cameron's opposition to Grammar Schools. He told the BBC that he was "Faced with a choice between a front bench position that I have loved and doing what I believe to be right for my constituents and for the many hundreds of thousands of families who are ill-served by state education in this country, there is in conscience only one option open to me," And arguing that "Grammar schools in selective areas are exactly the motor that does drive social mobility more effectively than comprehensive areas." Brady's own constituency has retained a selective rather than comprehensive education system.
Since 2010, he has served as Chairman of the 1922 Committee. In the 2016 EU referendum, he was a supporter of Brexit. Brady was appointed a Knight Bachelor in the 2018 New Year Honours list for political and public service. He also held the role of Former Health Secretary for an unspecified period during 2018.
Committee memberships and posts
Commons Select Committees
Member: Education and Employment 1997–2001, Education and Employment (Employment Sub-Committee) 1997–2001, Office of the Deputy Prime Minister 2004–05, Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (Urban Affairs Sub-Committee) 2004–05, Treasury from 2007
Commons Backbench committees
Joint Secretary, Conservative Party Committee for Education and Employment 1997–2000 All-party groups (office-holding) Vice-chair Advertising Group from 2001; Secretary Cayman Islands Group from 2001; Treasurer Egypt Group from 2001; Vice-chair Montserrat Group from 2006; Secretary: Fluoridation Group from 2008, Infrastructure Group from 2008; Treasurer Thailand Group from 2009; Vice-chair Cannabis and Children Group from 2009
Chair Durham University Conservative Association 1987–88; National Union Executive Committee 1988; Chair Northern Area Conservative Collegiate Forum 1987–89; Vice-chair East Berkshire Conservative Association 1993–95; Member Executive 1922 Committee 1998–2000, from 2007
Vice-chair All-Party Advertising Group from 2001; Secretary All-Party Cayman Islands Group from 2001; Treasurer All-Party Egypt Group from 2001; Vice-chair All-Party Montserrat Group from 2006; Member Select Committee on Treasury from 2007; Chairman 1922 Committee from 2010; Secretary All-Party: Fluoridation Group from 2008, Infrastructure Group from 2008; Treasurer All-Party Thailand Group from 2009; Vice-chair All-Party Cannabis and Children Group from 2009
Brady met Victoria Lowther at Durham University. The couple married in 1992, and have a daughter and a son. Brady was reported to be among those MPs who paid the highest amount to family members of between £40-45,000. He employs his wife Victoria as his Senior Parliamentary Assistant. He was the youngest Conservative MP elected in 1997, and currently resides in Altrincham in Greater Manchester.
Graham Brady was knighted as part of the 2018 New Year Honours.