|Member of Parliament |
5 May 2005
|Born||29 July 1965|
Faversham, Kent, England
|Alma mater||Magdalene College, Cambridge|
|Years of service||1987-1991|
Adam James Harold Holloway MP (born 29 July 1965) is a British Conservative Party politician and former journalist and military officer. He has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for Gravesham since 2005. He has been a vocal supporter of pro-Brexit lobby group Leave Means Leave.
Holloway was born on the 29 July 1965 in Faversham, Kent, the son of the Revd Roger Holloway OBE (died 2010). He was privately educated at Cranleigh School before going to Magdalene College, Cambridge where he studied social and political sciences, graduating as MA, before postgraduate studies at Imperial College London (MBA).
After graduating from university Holloway attended the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst, from which he was commissioned into the British Army's Grenadier Guards in 1987. During his four year military career he saw service with the British Army on the Rhine as an Armoured Infantry platoon officer, and in the Persian Gulf War.
After resigning from the Army in 1991 with the rank of Captain, Holloway worked as an investigative journalist and reporter with ITN, World in Action, Panorama, and also the Sunday Times. During his media career he produced an award-winning documentary series for ITV called "No Fixed Abode" (1991), in which he spent three months homeless on the streets of London examining the plight of the capital's growing homeless population, particularly those with mental health issues.
Holloway was elected in the 2005 general election to represent the Kent constituency of Gravesham, defeating a former Labour Minister, Chris Pond, by just 654 votes, but with one of the largest swings from Labour to Conservative in the country at 4.9% at that general election. This was the first time since the Second World War that Gravesham (or its predecessor Gravesend constituency) had not been held by the party of Government.
He delivered his maiden speech in the House of Commons on 28 June 2005. Holloway was also invited to speak (on 15 September 2006) alongside US Congressman John Shimkus to students on the campus of Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE).
In 2009 a report written by Holloway suggested that some of the claims about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction used to support the UK government's case for war in 2003 originated from an Iraqi taxi driver, and that this may have included the claim about them being ready to launch in 45 minutes". According to Holloway, reservations expressed by MI6 analysts about much of the data were ignored when preparing the case for war under pressure from Downing Street.
He was criticised in the local media in May 2009 for having the highest expenses claims in North Kent, but argued his claims were legitimate. In the wake of the Westminster Parliamentary Expenses scandal in 2009, Holloway was ordered by Sir Thomas Legg, the head of a committee examining abuse of expenses by Members of Parliament, to repay £1000 to the Exchequer which he had over-claimed. In July 2009, he was criticised by a local newspaper after he responded to a request for an interview about his plans for the summer recess with an expletive laden rejection. This came after all the other local MPs had given answers to the newspapers questions.
In October 2010 he was appointed as Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS) to David Lidington, Minister of State for Europe and NATO in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. In 2011, he resigned this junior governmental post to defy of a three-line (party) whip and vote in favour of an early referendum on membership of the EU.
In October 2014 he was one of just six Conservative MPs to vote against air strikes targeting Islamic State in Iraq, after visiting a border region held by the Kurdish Peshmerga. He argued the campaign hadn't "been thought through". He actively abstained in the vote for air strikes in Syria in November 2015.
In a September 2015 Parliamentary speech Holloway described giving asylum to refugees from the Middle East as "bonkers", stating than many asylum seekers go on holiday in the countries they had fled from and used his barber as an example. His barber, a Kurdish refugee, subsequently stated that he was holidaying in Great Yarmouth that week, not Iraq.
Holloway publicly supported the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union in the 2016 United Kingdom European Union membership referendum.
He was criticised by political rivals in June 2017 after he was seen campaigning with Janice Atkinson, a former UKIP MEP, who had been suspended from her former party after a fraud enquiry was started relating to her expenses and who had subsequently become vice-president of Marine Le Pen's far-right European Parliament grouping.
Holloway was a member of the Defence Select Committee from 2006 to 2010, and served for a time as Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Middle East Council. In Parliament, he has additionally been a member of the Science and Technology Committee, the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee, the Foreign Affairs Committee and the Public Administration Committee.
In April 2018, Holloway said in Parliament that sleeping rough is "a lot more comfortable" than military exercises and that the majority of rough sleepers were "foreign nationals", in a debate on tackling street homelessness. Rival politicians and charities pointed to evidence that 78 homeless people had died the previous winter and that 80% of recorded homeless people were UK nationals. Holloway defended his position during the debate by pointing to his personal experience of being in the army and having spent several months sleeping on the streets as part of a television programme.