Tracey Crouch named new charities minister

Already sports minister, Crouch is the MP for Chatham and Aylesford and has some connections with the charity sector

Tracey Crouch
Tracey Crouch

The sports minister Tracey Crouch has also been given the charities brief.

The Conservative MP for Chatham and Aylesford, who has been at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport as sports minister since 2015, has taken on responsibility for the Office for Civil Society in addition to her sports duties as part of the reshuffle after last week’s general election.

Crouch, who has been an MP since 2010, has updated her Twitter profile to state that she is now "sports and civil society minister".

The DCMS initially confirmed yesterday morning that John Glen, MP for Salisbury, had been made Minister for Civil Society, but Glen said on his Twitter feed last night that he had been made minister for the arts, heritage and tourism, the latter two areas previously falling under Crouch’s remit.

Crouch has already been in communication with senior figures in the sector, it is understood.

Her official website says she holds 11 patronages, including president of RSPCA Medway West, patron of the Medway branch of the National Osteoporosis Society, vice president of the Kent branch of the Campaign to Protect Rural England and an honorary member of the Friends of Mental Health, West Kent and Medway.

She also volunteers as a manager and FA-qualified coach at Meridian Girls’ Football Club in Kent, according to her declaration of interests, and is a keen sports enthusiast.

In her maiden speech to the House of Commons, delivered on 10 June 2010 during a debate about tackling poverty in the UK, she spoke of the difficulty charities faced in helping to deal with social problems.

"There is no easy answer," she said. "It is not just one thing that needs to change. Low income, family breakdown, addiction, mental health problems and criminal behaviour contribute to a lack of expectation that, in turn, leads to inactivity.

"Charities find themselves too small to help, agencies find it too difficult and authorities find it too expensive. Complex problems may require multiple solutions, but unless we invest our time, energy and support, deprivation in parts of one of the most advanced countries in the world will continue to blight our nation."

The 41-year-old was born and grew up in Kent, and was educated at Folkestone School for Girls before studying law at the University of Hull.

Her official website says: "After graduation, she accidentally found herself working as a researcher to a Conservative MP rather than training to become a solicitor."

She is a vice-chair of the All Party Parliamentary Groups on dementia, alcohol misuse and athletics and is a former member of the House of Commons select committees for Culture, Media and Sport and Political and Constitutional Reform.

Crouch succeeds Rob Wilson, who lost his Reading East seat at the general election last week after almost three years as charities minister.

She is the first female Conservative to hold ministerial responsibility for charities. The last female charities minister was Labour’s Angela Smith, who lost her seat at the 2010 election.

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