Kelly Tolhurst
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Kelly Tolhurst

Kelly Tolhurst

Official portrait of Kelly Tolhurst crop 2.jpg
Tolhurst in 2017
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Housing and Rough Sleeping

8 September 2020 - 16 January 2021
Boris Johnson
Luke Hall
Eddie Hughes
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Aviation and Maritime

13 February 2020 - 8 September 2020
Boris Johnson
Nus Ghani
Robert Courts
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Small Business, Consumers and Corporate Responsibility

19 July 2018 - 13 February 2020
Theresa May
Boris Johnson
Andrew Griffiths
Paul Scully
Member of Parliament
for Rochester and Strood

7 May 2015
Mark Reckless
Majority17,072 (32.9%)
Member of Medway Council
for Rochester West Ward

5 May 2011 - 12 January 2018[1]
Mark Reckless
Alex Paterson
Personal details
Kelly Jane Tolhurst

(1978-08-23) 23 August 1978 (age 42)
Rochester, Kent, England
Political partyConservative
WebsiteCampaign website

Kelly Jane Tolhurst[2] (born 23 August 1978) is a British Conservative Party politician serving as Member of Parliament (MP) for Rochester and Strood since 2015.[3] Tolhurst served as Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Rough Sleeping and Housing from 2020 to 2021 and Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Department for Transport in 2020. She is a former Councillor for the Rochester West ward on Medway Council.[4]

Early life

Tolhurst was born in Rochester; her father was a local boat builder, Morris Tolhurst. She was educated locally at Chapter High School.[5] From 2008, she ran a marine survey business, called Tolhurst Associates, with her father, with employment in marketing previous to this point.[6][7]

Political career

Tolhurst was elected to the Rochester West ward on Medway Council in 2011 and served as a councillor until 2018 when she resigned. In the by-election for the ward that followed in March 2018, the seat was taken by the Labour candidate Alex Paterson.[8][9] She was selected to contest the 2014 Rochester and Strood by-election which was triggered by the defection of Mark Reckless to UKIP.[10] Tolhurst lost the by-election, held on 20 November 2014, but regained the seat for the Conservatives at the 2015 general election six months later, securing a majority of over 7,000.[11] She was re-elected in 2017.

Tolhurst has served on the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee, the European Scrutiny Committee and the Business, Innovation and Skills Committee.[12] She was made an assistant government whip during the reshuffle on 9 January 2018.[13]

Tolhurst was appointed the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy on 19 July 2018.[14]

In February 2020, Tolhurst was appointed as the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport at the Department for Transport, succeeding Nus Ghani who had been relieved of ministerial responsibilities. Tolhurst garnered criticism in March 2020 after commenting in the House of Commons that the government were not responsible for "propping up" airlines as a result of the collapse of Flybe.

Tolhurst campaigned to remain in the European Union prior to the 2016 referendum.[15]

Tolhurst was appointed as the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Local Government and Homelessness at the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government in September 2020, replacing Luke Hall, who had in turn replaced Simon Clarke in a different position in the same department. She resigned from this position in January 2021 after receiving "devastating family news".[16]


  1. ^ Hoare, Gavin. "Resignation of Councillor Kelly Tolhurst".
  2. ^ "No. 61961". The London Gazette. 19 June 2017. p. 11776.
  3. ^ "Election 2015: Rochester & Strood parliamentary constituency". BBC News. 9 June 2017. Retrieved 2017.
  4. ^ "MP resigns as local councillor". Kent Online. Retrieved 2018.
  5. ^ "Personal website". MP. Retrieved 2018.
  6. ^ Holehouse, Matthew (14 October 2014). "Stay-at-home mother lined up to halt Ukip advance". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2015.
  7. ^ Letts, Quentin (22 July 2015). "Stay-at-home mother lined up to halt Ukip advance". Tatler. Retrieved 2018.
  8. ^ "Previews: 08 Mar 2018". 7 March 2018.
  9. ^ Francis, Paul (23 October 2014). "Medway councillor Kelly Tolhurst beats Anna Firth to become the Conservative candidate for the Rochester and Strood by-election". Retrieved 2015.
  10. ^ "Rochester byelection: Tories select local businesswoman Kelly Tolhurst". The Guardian. 23 October 2014. Retrieved 2015.
  11. ^ Hartley-Parkinson, Richard (8 May 2015). "Tories get revenge on Mark Reckless by taking seat back from Ukip". Metro. Retrieved 2015.
  12. ^ "Parliamentary profile". GOV. Retrieved 2018.
  13. ^ Walker, Peter (9 January 2018). "Theresa May's junior ministerial reshuffle: who's in and who's out". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2018.
  14. ^ "Kelly Tolhurst MP". GOV.UK. Retrieved 2019.
  15. ^ "EU vote: Where the cabinet and other MPs stand". BBC News. 22 June 2016.
  16. ^ Carpani, Jessica (16 January 2021). "Conservative MP Kelly Tolhurst resigns as Housing Minister following 'devastating' family news". The Telegraph. Retrieved 2021.

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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