Conservative Intelligence

Conservative Intelligence

This site is currently down for maintenance and should be back soon.

Mark Hoban

Position: Financial Secretary, HM Treasury 2010

Last Updated: Friday, November 12th, 2010

Mark Hoban is one of those Conservative MPs who has been oft-described in profiles as a “Right wing Eurosceptic”.  However, his confinement to the front bench for almost his entire parliamentary career has provided little evidence to demonstrate personal political convictions which in any way stray from the party line.  That said, he publicly declared support for Michael Portillo and David Davis respectively in the 2001 and 2005 Conservative leadership elections.

He is a rarity in the Conservative Parliamentary party in that he hails from the North East of England.  In fact, he grew up in a Labour- supporting family in County Durham, where he was educated at a Catholic comprehensive school.  However, by the age of sixteen he had joined the Conservative Party, not long after Margaret Thatcher became Prime Minister.

He studied Economic at the LSE, trained as a chartered accountant on graduation and remained a senior manager at PriceWaterhouseCoopers until his eventual election to Parliament in 2001.

He also remained active in the voluntary party throughout the 1980s and 1990s, holding office in the Southampton Itchen Conservative Association and making a very brief return to the North East to don a blue rosette as candidate in the safe Labour seat of South Shields at the 1997 general election.

After his election as MP for Fareham in Hampshire (barely half an hour from his old Southampton stomping ground) Hoban remained on the backbenches for just a year. He was appointed a whip and then a year later became shadow schools minister, a post he held until 2005.

In putting together his first shadow team in 2005, David Cameron placed Hoban in George Osborne’s Treasury team – where he remains to this day, having been appointed Financial Secretary to the Treasury in the Coalition Government.

Observers remark that he is the kind of minister unlikely ever to make Cabinet, but whose hard work, capacity for detail and most of all loyalty make him an indispensable person to have serving in government.

He has a heavyweight ministerial portfolio, taking responsibility for, among other things, financial services policy, banking support and bank lending, personal savings and pensions policy, as well as supporting George Osborne on EU and international finance issues.

It is his work in that latter area which has led to him twice in recent weeks having to go to the House of Commons chamber to face a barrage of criticism from Eurosceptic Conservative backbenchers over the latest plans from Brussels to strengthen the economic governance of the European Union.

Outside of politics, he is a keen cook and is married to Fiona who – interestingly, given his City-related ministerial responsibilities – works for the Corporation of London.

Jonathan Isaby

From the Conservative Intelligence member's site

Miliband’s Threat To Outside Earnings May Drive Tory Mps Over The Edge

Conservative MPs are capable of a wide range of emotions, encompassing the normal human set and then a few extras thrown in. Pride, injured pride, confidence, optimism, crushing depression, panic, fury, resentment, contentment, ambition, resignation, triumph and a host of others are within their repertoire. Even at the best of times, a healthy parliamentary party […]

Cameron Woos Mrs Rochester

“There’s no stunts or backroom deals, just a strong local candidate you can trust.” So wrote David Cameron in a letter sent this week to every voter in Rochester and Strood, where the next UKIP-engineered by-election is to take place towards the end of November.  At the end of it, he made the point again […]

To Respond To Defeat In Clacton, The Tories Will Need A Tougher Immigration Policy

Everyone expected the UKIP candidate, Douglas Carswell, to win in Clacton, but few people thought he would win by the enormous margin of 12,404 votes. An exceptionally rude kick has been administered to David Cameron. It is not much consolation for the Conservatives that a scarcely less rude kick has been administered to Ed Miliband […]

The Tories Leave Birmingham With A New-Found Confidence

No-one knew quite what to expect when the Conservative family gathered in Birmingham on Sunday. Mark Reckless had just delivered the second UKIP defection blow in as many months, and Brooks Newmark’s indiscretions were causing embarrassment (though less existential questions for the party). If anything, observers might have expected a depressed conference mood. Instead, though, […]

21 People To Watch As Next Week’s Conservative Conference Looms

1. Those two MP defectors to UKIP – if, of course, they exist at all.  If so, they will presumably turn up on Saturday evening.  If they don’t, the media will treat this as a further sign that the Party isn’t grown-up, since it talked but didn’t deliver.   2. George Osborne. The Conservative election […]

Will Cameron Go Fast And Slow On Devolution All-Around?

The Prime Minister announced this morning that more devolution for Scotland and reform elsewhere – specifically, action on English votes for English laws – will take place “in tandem” and “at the same pace”.  Draft legislation will be “published by January”. His statement opens up two possible outcomes. The first is that he pushes for […]

Whatever The Result, The Scottish Referendum Has Killed Blair’s Devolution Settlement

The Scottish referendum result is up in the air – polls swing from No to Yes and back again, all within the margin of error. The rush from Westminster to Scotland, not only of the party leaders but of scores of Labour MPs, demonstrates how seriously the prospect of a Yes result is being taken. […]

Two Conservative Scenarios If Scotland Votes Yes

Scenario One: David Cameron does not resign as Prime Minister (or as Conservative leader).  Nor does any member of the Cabinet other than Alistair Carmichael, the Liberal Democrat Scottish Secretary.  The Coalition hangs together.  The Conservative Parliamentary Party rallies round its leader. UKIP’s attempt to provoke an English nationalist backlash comes to nothing.  Perhaps unexpectedly, […]

Cameron’s Ability To Neutralise Opponents Is Brilliantly Illustrated By His Handling Of The New Surveillance Law

David Cameron will always do what the Establishment considers to be prudent.  The Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Bill, sprung upon the Cabinet on Thursday morning, is a case in point. Cameron has been told by the security services that these powers are needed. He has therefore set out to square Nick Clegg and Ed […]

Why Critical Headlines About Donor Dinners Raise A Smile In Downing Street

In politics, as with so many things, it’s tempting to judge a book by its cover. The personalities, the catchphrases, the emotional and cultural baggage carried by politicians and parties all compete for our attention. They’re important, of course, but they’re only one part of the political process. The showbiz elements often distract people from […]