Norfolk gains one minister and loses another

PUBLISHED: 06:30 06 September 2012

Henry Bellingham lost his job in the government reshuffle.

Henry Bellingham lost his job in the government reshuffle.

Archant © 2010

David Cameron’s first reshuffle continued to touch Norfolk yesterday as one more of the county’s MPs was named a minister, while another who was already in government lost his job.

Great Yarmouth MP Brandon Lewis was confirmed by Downing Street as a new junior minister in the Department for Communities and Local Government.

The MP, elected in 2010, told the EDP shortly afterwards: “Some people had mentioned the possibility but it had not been on my mind at all and it has sort of come out of the blue.

“It’s a huge honour and I’m really looking forward to getting on with it now. I’ll have brief concerning local government.”

Mr Lewis now joins five other MPs from Norfolk and Suffolk who were granted jobs in the reshuffle, including North Norfolk MP Norman Lamb, South West Norfolk MP Liz Truss, Norwich North MP Chloe Smith, West Suffolk MP Matt Hancock and Central Suffolk MP Dan Poulter.

Meanwhile North West Norfolk MP Henry Bellingham lost his position at the Foreign Office which he had done for the last two and a half years. He has held some sort of front bench position in his party for around a decade.

He said: “Travelling through 61 countries for over two years is incredibly demanding and eventually something had to give.

“Coming out of government my priority is to get stuck into the constituency and start campaigning hard on the incinerator which is planned there.

“One of the things that really led me not to push for a job elsewhere is that I wanted the freedom to campaign and from the backbenches you can initiate adjournment debates and do things that a frontbencher can’t.

“I like to think I haven’t neglected my constituency in terms of dealing with correspondence and when I was abroad many of the requests to my office will have been answered by my staff. Now I plan to be more hands on.”

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