Andrew Stephenson lives in Colne and has advice centres in Barnoldswick and Nelson.
First elected in 2010, Andrew was re-elected in the 2015 and 2017 General Elections, with a higher number of votes and share of the vote each time.
Andrew served as a Vice Chairman of the Conservative Party between 2010-2013 and has acted as Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS) to four Government Ministers. He has held various positions in the Government Whips Office and served as the Business and Industry Minister. He is currently a Minister of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Department for International Development.
In the EU Referendum in 2016, Andrew voted Leave, along with 63% of Pendle residents.
A regular participant in House of Commons debates, Andrew has achieved some notable successes. Following the murder of his constituent, Jane Clough, in 2010 by her partner who was out on bail, Andrew proposed a Private Members Bill to create a right of appeal against Crown Court bail decisions. Working with Jane’s parents, John and Penny Clough MBE, Andrew was successful in getting the law changed and this additional safeguard was introduced in 2012.
As a former small businessman, Andrew has put jobs and employment at the top of his agenda. Andrew holds an annual Job Fair at Colne Muni and campaigned for a National Living Wage, which was introduced in 2016. He has long championed the regeneration of Brierfield Mills, securing millions of pounds from the Government to bring the site into public ownership and enable its £32 million transformation into ‘Northlight’. In September 2019, it was announced that Andrew had secured upto £25 million of funding for Nelson, as it was chosen by the government as one of 100 towns to benefit from the governments £3.6 billion Towns Fund.
This announcement of up to £25 million funding for a range of projects across Nelson will be transformative and is a once in a lifetime opportunity to reverse the decades long decline of the town. I am delighted about this, as I have met Robert Jenrick and Northern Powerhouse Minister Jake Berry a number of times to make the case for a range of projects in Nelson and across Pendle.
As a former Aerospace Minister, Andrew has been a vocal champion of the Aerospace Sector and major local employers, like Rolls-Royce in Barnoldswick, which announced a £50 million investment during 2016. In 2017, Andrew secured a further £4 million of Government funding to expand the Lomeshaye Industrial Estate, the largest employment site in Pendle, creating an additional 1,100 full-time jobs. In 2018 Andrew secured a fully funded study into re-opening the Colne-Skipton railway line and in 2019 a fully funded study into the traffic congestion at the end of the M65. Both studies will help make the case for the substantial investment needed to improve Pendle road and rail connections.
Andrew has volunteered as a First Responder with the North West Ambulance Service since 2014 and works hard to support our NHS. He has consistently argued for Burnley Hospital’s A&E, which was closed by Labour in 2007, to be re-opened and helped secure a new £9 million Urgent Care Centre at the Hospital, which opened in 2014. Following this Andrew secured a further £15.6 million for the Phase 8 development of Burnley General which was opened in September 2019. Andrew’s campaigning on Health issues has also seen a new £4 million Health Centre in Colne and a new £6.3 million A&E at Airedale Hospital, both of which opened in 2014.
Education and skills are also very close to Andrew’s heart and he has served as a School Governor at Whitefield Infant School in Nelson since 2009. Thanks to the Conservatives, the outstanding Nelson & Colne College has seen several million pounds invested in its facilities, whilst West Craven High has undergone a £6.2 million facelift and, in addition, four new primary school buildings have been constructed.