Siddhesh Joshi (Editor)

Janet Anderson

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Tony Blair

Succeeded by
Jake Berry

Preceded by
Tessa Jowell


Labour Party

Succeeded by
Gillian Shephard

Janet Anderson

Vincent Humphreys

Preceded by
Sir David Trippier


6 December 1949 (age 66)Newcastle upon Tyne, Northumberland, England (

University of Westminster

Janet anderson for senate businesses

Janet Anderson (born 6 December 1949) is an English Labour Party politician who was the Member of Parliament (MP) for Rossendale and Darwen from 1992 until 2010, when she lost her seat. Her time as MP is remembered for her role as Minister for Tourism during the foot and mouth crisis, that devastated rural tourism during 2001, and her role in the 2009 expenses scandal.


Janet Anderson 2015 Day 2

Early life

Anderson was educated at Trowbridge Girls' High School (now The John of Gaunt School) and the Kingswood Grammar School in Kingswood, South Gloucestershire. She attended the Polytechnic of Central London and the Université de Nantes.

In 1971, Anderson joined the offices of The Scotsman and The Sunday Times as a secretary. In 1974, she became the personal assistant to the MP for Blackburn, Barbara Castle, and to her successor Jack Straw until the 1987 General Election, when she unsuccessfully fought the marginal seat of Rossendale and Darwen; losing to David Trippier by 4,982 votes.

Anderson became a campaigns organiser for the Parliamentary Labour Party, and then the northern regional organiser for the Shopping Hours Reform Council campaigning to extending the Sunday trading laws. She also ran her own public relations company, with clients such as the Royal College of Nursing and Safeway plc.

Anderson is a member of the GMB Union, and was formerly secretary of the Tribune Group.

Parliamentary career

Anderson re fought Rossendale and Darwen successfully at the 1992 General Election, winning by just 120 votes. She became the Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Deputy Leader of the Opposition, Margaret Beckett, which she held for a year.

She was an opposition whip from 1994 to 1996, before being appointed Shadow Minister for Women. In October 1996, while in this role, she notoriously joked in an interview that women would become "more promiscuous" under a Labour Government.

In May 1996, in response to campaigns to deal with the problem of stalking, she presented the Stalking Bill 1996 to Parliament under the Ten Minute Rule, with support from 64 other MPs. The bill failed to get government support, as it was felt that the proposed offence failed to distinguish between reasonable and unreasonable conduct.

Following the 1997 General Election, Anderson became a junior whip, and Vice-Chamberlain of the Household in Tony Blair's new government, before being promoted to Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport in 1998, where she was the Minister for Tourism, Film and Broadcasting, and was responsible for bringing in the popular free television licences for the over 75s. During her time as Minister for Tourism, rural tourism lost £100m a week at the height of the foot and mount crisis.

At the conclusion of the foot and mouth crisis, Anderson returned to the back benches following the 2001 General Election. She subsequently served on the Home Affairs Select Committee, before becoming a member of the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee and the House of Commons Administration Committee. She was also on the Chairmen's Panel Committee. She was defeated in the 2010 General Election, by Conservative candidate Jake Berry in an 8.9% swing to the Conservatives. Berry overturned a Labour majority of 3,616 to win by 4,493 votes.


In May 2009, during the disclosure of expenses of British members of parliament over MPs' expenses, The Daily Telegraph alleged that Anderson had submitted and was paid a claim form including mileage equalling 5 round trips to her constituency each week parliament sat along with rail and air fares despite living in London during the week. Her expenses for car journeys were; £16,612 for 60,118 miles travelled. This was £4,500 more than the next highest claimant, Laurence Robertson.

The Telegraph described her as "one of the most prolific expense claimers in Parliament".

Other allegations included expenses for the upkeep of the home of her partner, fellow MP Jim Dowd MP, in his Lewisham constituency under her second home allowance despite Dowd claiming the London salary supplement intended to cover the additional cost of living in London. Anderson was one of 98 MPs who voted in favour of legislation which would have kept MPs expense information undisclosed.

Anderson claimed near the maximum Additional Costs Allowance between 2001 and 2008, ranking joint highest in 2002/03, 2004/05 and 2006/07 also 3rd in 2003/04. In January 2010, Anderson was allowed to secretly repay £5,750 in expenses for over claimed petty cash.

Personal life

Anderson married solicitor Vincent Humphreys in 1972; the couple had three children. Her son David managed her office in the House of Commons. In December 1998, she had an affair and left (and later divorced) Humphreys for fellow Labour MP Jim Dowd, though she remain on good terms with her former husband. Anderson lists her pastimes as swimming, playing the piano, listening to opera, gardening and cooking Sunday roasts for her family. She speaks fluent French.


Janet Anderson Wikipedia