Adrian Sanders
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Adrian Sanders

Adrian Sanders
AdrianSandersMP 2009.jpg
Sanders in 2009
Member of Parliament
for Torbay

1 May 1997 - 30 March 2015
Rupert Allason
Kevin Foster
Personal details
Born (1959-04-25) 25 April 1959 (age 60)
Paignton, Devon, England
Political partyLiberal Democrats
Spouse(s)Alison Sanders[1]
WebsiteAdrian Sanders MP

Adrian Mark Sanders (born 25 April 1959, Paignton) is a Liberal Democrat politician in the United Kingdom. He was the Member of Parliament (MP) for Torbay in Devon from 1997 until his defeat in the 2015 general election.

Personal life

Sanders is the son of the late John and Helen Sanders, an insurance official and nurse respectively. He went to primary schools in Paignton and Torquay then Torquay Boys' Grammar School. He worked briefly in a timber yard, then in the insurance industry for seven years, and then had a short spell of unemployment before finding work in the political arena.

Adrian Sanders is married to Alison and lives in Paignton. He has had Type 1 diabetes since 1990 and campaigns on issues relating to diabetes.

Sanders is a fan of rock music and occasionally presents a Rock Show on local radio station Palm 105.5. He is also a supporter of Torquay United.

Political career

Sanders joined the Liberal Party in 1979 and in 1985 was elected Vice President of the National League of Young Liberals. He was a Torbay Borough councillor 1984-86. From 1986-89 he lived in Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire, working for the Association of Liberal Democrat Councillors[2] before moving back to Paignton in 1990.

During 1992-93 Sanders worked in the office of Paddy Ashdown, the leader of the Liberal Democrats, and organised the 'Beyond Westminster' Tour. He then moved to become a policy officer at the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (1993-94) and then the Southern Association of Voluntary Action Groups for Europe.[3]

Sanders stood unsuccessfully for the seat of Torbay 1992 general election, reducing the Conservative majority from 8,820 to 5,787. In the 1994 European Election, he unsuccessfully stood for the Devon and East Plymouth constituency, the loss was partly blamed on one of the candidates, Richard Huggett, standing with the description 'Literal' Democrat.[4]

In the 1997 general election Sanders stood in Torbay, successfully, defeating the Conservative incumbent Rupert Allason by 12 votes. In the 2001 general election, his majority was 6,708; at the 2005 general election, it was 2,029 and it was 4,078 at the 2010 general election.[5]

Following the 2001 election, Sanders was made the Liberal Democrat spokesman for tourism and was subsequently moved to the position of Deputy Chief Whip of the Party in Parliament.[6] In the 2006 leadership contest Sanders nominated Menzies Campbell. In the December 2007 leadership election Sanders remained neutral by not publicly backing any candidate, citing his position as Deputy Chief Whip. He wrote afterwards that he had voted for Chris Huhne.[7]

Sanders was awarded the Diabetes UK 75th Anniversary Award at a ceremony in the House of Commons on Wednesday 21 January 2009. In July 2010, he received the League Against Cruel Sports' Parliamentarian of the Year Award.[8]

In April 2009, Sanders appeared in The Sunday Telegraph list of best value MPs. At the height of the expenses scandal, he opened his complete 'unredacted' expenses file to his local newspaper, the Herald Express.

In October 2011 he voted for a backbench motion to hold a referendum on Britain's membership of the European Union, along with 110 other MPs in the House of Commons. He was the only Liberal Democrat MP to do so. Sanders said he was also probably the only supporter of the EU to do so, but believed it was "a liberal principle to trust the people"[9]

In May 2012, Sanders was the one Liberal Democrat on the Commons culture, media and sport select committee on phone hacking[10] and provided the swing vote on the release of a report. Sanders joined with the five Labour committee members and against the four Conservative members to support the report which said in part that Rupert Murdoch was "'not fit' to run an international company".[11]

In March 2015, Queen guitarist Brian May launched the "Common Decency" campaign, naming Sanders alongside six other candidates, saying: "We think you're decent people, we think you represent your constituents and your conscience so we're going to tell our people to try and cluster round and give you support."[12]

In the 2015 general election, Sanders lost his seat to the Conservative Party candidate Kevin Foster by a majority of 3,286.[13][14]

On 5 November 2015, Sanders was elected as the Liberal Democrat councillor for the Clifton-with-Maidenway ward of Paignton, taking almost 70 percent of the vote.[15]


  1. ^ The Register of Members' Financial Interests: Part 2 As at 24 January 2011 UK Parliament
  2. ^ Association of Liberal Democrat Councillors
  3. ^ Savage Europe Archived 17 December 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ "Research Paper, The Registration of Political Parties, Bill 188 of 1997-1998" (PDF). UK Parliament. 1 June 1998. Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 November 2006. The issue of misleading descriptions came to public attention in 1994 when Richard Huggett stood as the Literal Democrat candidate in the European Parliament elections in the constituency of Devon and East Plymouth
  5. ^ "Election 2010 - Torbay". BBC News. 7 May 2010. Archived from the original on 27 April 2010. Retrieved 2010.
  6. ^ "Mr Adrian Sanders". Parliament UK. Retrieved 2016.
  7. ^ How I Voted Adrian Sanders Blog, Myspace, 19 December 2007
  8. ^ West Country MP wins animal welfare award Archived 22 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine League Against Cruel Sports, 3 July 2010
  9. ^ Sanders, Adrian (26 October 2011). "EU referendum: I believe in Europe - which is why I rebelled". Guardian. Retrieved 2015.
  10. ^ "Phone hacking report: see how the select committee voted on each amendment", The Guardian Datablog, 1 May 2012. Retrieved 2012-05-02.
  11. ^ Fenton, Ben, and Jim Pickard, "Clegg backs MPs' criticism of Murdoch", Financial Times, 2 May 2012. Retrieved 2012-05-02.
  12. ^ "Brian May Is On A Mission To Save British Democracy". Retrieved 2015.
  13. ^ "Torbay Parliamentary constituency". BBC. Retrieved 2015.
  14. ^ "General Election 2015: Tories oust Devon Lib Dems". BBC. Retrieved 2015.
  15. ^ "Adrian Sanders, former Lib Dem MP, elected to Torbay Council". BBC News. 5 November 2015. Retrieved 2015.

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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