I recently gave a frank interview to The House magazine. You can find it on PoliticsHome:

He volunteered for the Centre for Social Justice and formed the Cobden [Centre], described as “an educational charity to promote social progress through honest money”, and within three years was elected as the MP for Wycombe.

Parliament, he says, is an “extremely frustrating” place to work. “The whole system is set up to stop you achieving anything,” he argues. “The theatre of Parliament I don’t enjoy at all. We’ve got such profound, deep-rooted problems and we’re messing around scoring silly political points. I really want politics to move beyond that. The tribalism does irritate me.”


  1. Some interesting ideas in your interview, especially on mutualism. British governments of left and right seem very hostile to mutually owned enterprise.

    For example Tower Colliery, where a bunch of miners bought the pit with their redundancy money when British Coal closed the mine. They risked their own money, they were profitable, the only alternative would have boon the dole. And yet the government were unremittingly hostile to this fine example of private enterprise.

    Why do you think this is?

  2. The Tower Colliery buyout was indeed a fine example of private enterpise and I am puzzled why you think Governments were hostile to it?

    The buyout occurred in 1994 under the Conservatives and the price was a hardly exhorbitant £2m. And the coal finally ran out in 2008 after 11 years of Labour Government. Labout could not be blamed. What more would you have wanted?

    • To his credit, John Redwood (then Secretary of State for Wales) was very much in favour and worked with Tyrone O ‘Sullivan to make the buyout possible.

      On the other side, Michael Heseltine was hostile, Margaret Thatcher was somewhat against, and the Coal Board was very much opposed.

      And the NUM! They loathed the idea of a workers’ buyout and felt that it was flirting with capitalism.