Peter Heaton-Jones

Peter Heaton-Jones
MP
Member of Parliament
for North Devon
Assumed office
8 May 2015
Preceded by Nick Harvey
Majority 4,332 (7.8%)
Personal details
Born (1963-08-02) 2 August 1963
Political party Conservative
Alma mater University of London
Website Official website

Peter Heaton-Jones MP (born 2 August 1963) is a British journalist and Conservative Party politician who has held senior positions in the media and politics in both the UK and Australia. He was elected at the general election May 2015 the Member of Parliament (MP) for North Devon.[1]

In 2010 he was elected as a Borough Councillor in Swindon, Wiltshire, and was Agent for the general election campaigns of the two new Conservative MPs in Swindon. In the media, he is best known for presenting news programming on BBC national and local radio in the UK, and was the former head of marketing for ABC radio in Australia.

Early career

Heaton-Jones began his broadcasting career after graduating from the University of London. He worked initially in commercial radio before joining the BBC in 1986, becoming a reporter, producer and news presenter at BBC Essex and anchoring the Breakfast and Drivetime programmes. He joined the national news & current affairs network BBC Radio 5 Live when it opened in 1994. He was best known as presenter of Morning Reports and Up All Night, as well as editing programmes hosted by TV presenters Nicholas Witchell, Alastair Stewart and Diana Madill. During this period he also worked at BBC Southern Counties Radio, and undertook various media training and advisory roles.

Later career

In 1997, Heaton-Jones moved to Australia to join the Australian Broadcasting Corporation in Sydney. He became head of marketing for radio stations ABC NewsRadio, Radio National and ABC Classic FM, but left after three years as a result of the reorganisation instigated by controversial managing director Jonathan Shier.

He returned to the UK in 2000 and joined BBC Radio Swindon, gaining a high profile in the region as presenter of the Breakfast Show and Morning Show from 2000 to 2006. He was also a newspaper columnist for the Swindon Advertiser. He left full-time broadcasting in August 2006, apart from a guest role presenting the launch programme and first week of Breakfast shows at community radio station Swindon 105.5 in March 2008.

Politics

Heaton-Jones specialised as a political journalist, including the presentation of BBC election coverage nationally and locally from 1986 onwards. In 2006 he conducted a face-to-face interview with then-British Prime Minister Tony Blair. After leaving the BBC he joined the British Conservative Party and wrote articles and policy documents. In 2006, Peter Heaton-Jones returned to Australia and worked on the election campaign of Rob Stokes, the Liberal Party candidate in the New South Wales Electoral district of Pittwater. The campaign succeeded, with Stokes regaining the seat for the Liberals from incumbent Independent Member of Parliament Alex McTaggart. After the election, Peter Heaton-Jones was appointed Stokes' policy advisor and press secretary in the New South Wales Parliament.

In 2007 he returned to live in the UK, and stood as the Conservative Party candidate in the 2008 local elections in a strongly pro-Labour area of Swindon Borough Council. After the election, Heaton-Jones was appointed the Party's media and campaigns director. In 2009 he became a Councillor on Haydon Wick Parish Council and a Governor at Isambard Community School, both in North Swindon.[1]

In 2010, he served as agent and campaign director for the Conservative candidates in the North Swindon and South Swindon parliamentary constituencies, both of which were gained from the Labour Party at the general election on 6 May. On the same day he was elected to Swindon Borough Council as councillor for the Abbey Meads ward. Following the election, he was appointed Senior Parliamentary Assistant to members of parliament Robert Buckland and Justin Tomlinson. He was also appointed to a number of committees on Swindon Borough Council, including the Planning and Scrutiny committees.

In May 2012, Heaton-Jones was re-elected to Swindon Borough Council for the new St Andrews ward. He was appointed Chair of the Economic Scrutiny Committee and Vice-Chair of Scrutiny, and also serves on the Licensing Committee. In February 2013 he was selected as the Conservative Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for North Devon,[2] winning the seat in May 2015.[3] In March 2014 he resigned from Swindon Borough Council.[1]

Heaton-Jones was opposed to Brexit prior to the 2016 referendum.[4]

References

  1. 1 2 3 Peter Heaton-Jones retires from Swindon Borough Council, peterheatonjones.org.uk; accessed 9 May 2015.
  2. Profile Archived 16 April 2013 at the Wayback Machine., standrewsconservatives.info; accessed 11 May 2015.
  3. Peter Heaton-Jones gives acceptance speech, northdevongazette.co.uk; accessed 11 May 2015.
  4. Goodenough, Tom (16 February 2016). "Which Tory MPs back Brexit, who doesn't and who is still on the fence?". The Spectator. Retrieved 11 October 2016.
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Nick Harvey
Member of Parliament
for North Devon

2015–present
Incumbent
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