25 Facts About Claire Perry


Claire Louise Perry O'Neill is a British businesswoman and former politician who is the managing director for climate and energy at the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, having previously served as Minister of State for Energy and Clean Growth from 2017 to 2019.

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Claire Louise Perry O'Neill was born in Bromsgrove, Worcestershire, and brought up in North Somerset.

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Claire Perry is the youngest of three children of David and Joanne Richens.

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Claire Perry was educated at Nailsea School in Somerset and Brasenose College, Oxford, where she read geography, graduating in 1985.

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Claire Perry was selected in November 2009 as a Conservative candidate after Michael Ancram announced his intention to stand down from Devizes, a safe seat for her party.

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Claire Perry paid tribute to the Armed Forces, as Devizes is home to 11,000 soldiers.

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In October 2011, Claire Perry was appointed as Parliamentary Private Secretary to Philip Hammond, the Secretary of State for Defence.

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Claire Perry held this role until October 2013, when she became a Government Assistant Whip.

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On 15 July 2014, Claire Perry was appointed Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport, with responsibility for rail fares, rail franchising, freight and logistics and transport agencies.

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Claire Perry resigned from this position on 14 July 2016, at the time of the reshuffle, when Theresa May became Prime Minister, the day after saying in a debate she was "often ashamed to be the Rail Minister".

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Claire Perry campaigned for improvements in online safety, and in 2011 led an Independent Parliamentary Inquiry into Online Child Protection, with a particular focus on online pornography.

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Claire Perry argued for blocks on pornography for all internet users unless they opt out of it, citing the need to protect children.

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Claire Perry accused political blogger Paul Staines – known for his Guido Fawkes blog – of sponsoring the attack, while Staines threatened to sue her for libel if the claim was not removed.

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In 2012, Claire Perry mistakenly stated that the national debt and national deficit were the same thing in a discussion on BBC Radio 5 Live.

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Claire Perry was one of only seven Conservative MPs to vote for an amendment arguing that Parliament should have the final say on any deal to leave the EU.

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Claire Perry subsequently voted with her party in approving the decision to invoke Article 50.

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Claire Perry was appointed as Minister of State for Energy and Clean Growth at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy by Theresa May in the her second ministry, after the June 2017 reshuffle.

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In September 2019, Claire Perry announced she would not stand at the next general election, which in the event took place in December of that year.

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In November 2018 the PCS, FDA and Prospect unions raised concerns with senior officials at the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy that Claire Perry had been accused of swearing and shouting at staff.

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Claire Perry did not deny the report, but said that she had not broken any Parliamentary rules.

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In September 2019, Claire Perry was nominated as President of the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference, to be held in Glasgow in November 2020.

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Claire Perry was succeeded as Conservative MP for Devizes by Danny Kruger.

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Claire Perry later criticised actions of the prime minister's adviser Dominic Cummings, saying he "put out a deeply defamatory briefing to the media the day he fired me, claiming that the COP didn't need a President".

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In September 2020, Claire Perry was appointed managing director for climate and energy at the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, a membership organisation for companies, which works on a variety of issues related to sustainable development.

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Three months after she announced her separation, it was reported that Claire Perry had begun a relationship with Professor Bill O'Neill, a researcher and lecturer on lasers, whom she had met through constituency work; Claire Perry and O'Neill married in 2018.

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