* The Debatewise Team
The Debatewise Team: Edward Leigh MP - Patron
Edward Leigh was born in 1950. He was educated at St Phillips School, London, the Oratory School Berkshire, the French Lycee, London and at Durham University (Modern History) where he was President of the Union Society.
He is the younger son of Sir Neville Leigh K.C.V.O., former clerk to the Privy Council. He is married with three daughters and three sons.
He is a barrister, and a member of the Inner Temple, practising for Goldsmiths Chambers in arbitration and criminal law.
Edward Leigh was a member of Richmond Borough Council and then the Greater London Council from 1974 until 1981.
Mr Leigh worked in the private office of Mrs Thatcher from 1976-77 as private secretary in charge of her correspondence as Leader of the Opposition.
He fought Teesside Middlesborough in the October 1974 General Election. He was elected as Member of Parliament for Gainsborough & Horncastle in the June l983 General Election.
He was Joint Secretary of the Conservative Parliamentary Defence Committee and the Parliamentary Agriculture Committee from 1983-85.
Edward was Chairman of the National Council for Civil Defence and was Director of the Coalition For Peace Through Security, until early 1985.
From 1990-1993 Mr Leigh was a Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Department of Trade and Industry. Prior to that he was a Parliamentary Private Secretary in the Home Office.
In May 1997 he was elected Member of Parliament for the new seat of Gainsborough with a majority of 6,826, this rose to 8071 in 2001.
He was a member of the Social Security Select Committee, and Joint Vice-Chairman of the Conservative Parliamentary Foreign Affairs Committee.