High Peak MP Andrew Bingham has been appointed as a Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS) to Defence Minister Mark Francois. Andrew has been appointed just before the summer recess, as part of the final parts of the Government reshuffle.
“It is a huge honour to be asked to do a job by the Prime Minister and, whilst it is just in a very minor role as a PPS, I am pleased to be asked to help out in this small way.
"Given my rebellious nature over the last four years, I was very surprised to be asked. The Defence department is a hugely important one, and I'm looking forward to working with Mark, who I have known for several years and get along well with. I spent two years as part of the Armed Forces Parliamentary Scheme (AFPS), which gave me a fascinating insight into forces life and the challenges it presents, so to be now involved through the Minister will be a great honour.”
The role of a PPS, which isn't salaried, is mainly to act as a Minister's contact with backbench MPs, occasionally stand in for the Minister in exceptional circumstances, and to generally support the Minister in their duties.
“I have always said I would never seek higher office, but if offered I would consider it. Given the gravity of the department, I felt that accepting the role would - in a small way - help me to further support those in the armed forces, many of whom I met during my time on the AFPS. However, I want to reassure residents of the High Peak that I will still work the way I have since being elected. Putting the High Peak first is - and always will be - my mantra as I endeavour to do the best I can for our area and my fellow local residents.”