Who is Luke Hall? 11 facts about the new skills, apprenticeships and HE minister

He replaces Robert Halfon who suddenly resigned last week

He replaces Robert Halfon who suddenly resigned last week

Luke Hall was appointed as a Department for Education minister last week following the sudden resignation of Robert Halfon. 

The DfE has now confirmed that Hall will take over all of Halfon’s responsibilities for skills, apprenticeships, and higher education.

Here’s what we know about the incumbent minister:

  1. Aged 37, Hall was born in South Gloucestershire and worked in supermarket chain Lidl from age 18. He became the manager of the supermarket branch in Yate and then progressed to area manager for Farmfoods.
  2. Hall was first elected as a Conservative MP for Thornbury and Yate in the 2015 general election. 
  3. Since then, he has voted in parliament for schools to become academies and has pushed for the construction of a SEND school in his constituency. He also spoke in 2021 about his work with DfE to carry out the ambitions of the skills for jobs white paper, including the devolution of the adult education budget.
  4. He was one of the MPs implicated in the battlebus expenses scandal in 2015 for reportedly spending more than the constituency cap during the election campaign. The Crown Prosecution Service ultimately did not press charges on any MPs despite finding evidence of inaccurate spending, according to reports at the time.
  5. He has sat on several House of Commons committees, including for work and pensions, petitions, and environmental audit.
  6. Hall has also served in junior government roles as minister for rough sleeping and housing and was a parliamentary private secretary to the ministerial team at DfE in 2017.
  7. In 2017, Hall was re-elected as MP with a 55.3 per cent majority compared to 14.2 per cent in 2015.
  8. Luke Hall originally campaigned to remain in the European Union. Since then, he has stayed on the side of the government, voting to trigger Article 50 – the treaty to begin Brexit. 
    “Prior to the referendum, I personally advocated and campaigned for a remain vote, so I can completely understand the concerns that many people have,” he told local reporters.
    “However, both South Gloucestershire and the country voted to leave the European Union, and I am respecting that result.”
  9. The MP was also minister for regional growth at the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government from September 2020 until September 2021. During that period, he came under fire from the opposition for advising rough sleepers to “where appropriate and possible, to return to friends and family”.
  10. He has also held the post of Conservative Party deputy chair until he resigned in July 2022 ahead of Boris Johnson’s resignation as prime minister. Current prime minister Rishi Sunak reappointed Hall as deputy chair last February.
  11. Hall has accepted donations from companies and private individuals alike over the years. Most recently, he received £5,000 from the Bristol Port Company. Hall has also received a total of £18,396.66 from Andrew Godson since 2019. Godson appears to be the CEO of an investment firm in London named Aptimus Capital Partners. He has also received donations from Henry Somerset, an English peer and landowner in Gloucestershire and Wiltshire.

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