Mark Prisk

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Mark Prisk
Official portrait of Mr Mark Prisk crop 2.jpg
Minister of State for Housing and Local Government
In office
4 September 2012 – 7 October 2013
Prime MinisterDavid Cameron
Preceded byGrant Shapps
Succeeded byKris Hopkins
Minister of State for Business and Enterprise
In office
13 May 2010 – 4 September 2012
Prime MinisterDavid Cameron
Preceded byThe Lord Davies of Abersoch
Succeeded byMichael Fallon
Member of Parliament
for Hertford and Stortford
In office
7 June 2001 – 6 November 2019
Preceded byBowen Wells
Succeeded byJulie Marson
Personal details
Born (1962-06-12) 12 June 1962 (age 57)
Redruth, Cornwall, England
Political partyConservative
Spouse(s)Lesley Titcomb
Alma materTruro School,[1] University of Reading

Michael Mark Prisk (born 12 June 1962, in Redruth, Cornwall) is a Conservative Party politician in the United Kingdom. He is a former Member of Parliament (MP) for Hertford and Stortford, and was the Minister of State for Housing and Local Government from 2012-2013 until he was removed in the October 2013 reshuffle.[2] He earlier served on the opposition frontbench as Shadow Minister for Business and Enterprise.[3]

Early life[edit]

Prisk was born at Redruth and whilst living at Camborne was educated at Truro School in 1973-80. He went on to study Land Management at the University of Reading, gaining a BSc degree. From 1983 to 1985, he was Chairman of the Youth Section of Peace through NATO. He was vice-chairman of the Federation of Conservative Students in 1982-83.

After graduation he worked in property and economic development, rising to become director of a £3 million practice. From 1983 to 1985, he worked as a graduate surveyor for Knight Frank, then as development surveyor for Derrick Wade & Waters where he became manager of the London office from 1985 to 1989. He was a marketing director from 1989–91, then principal of the Mark Prisk Connection from 1991 to 1997. From 1997 to 2001, he was company owner of MP2.

Parliamentary career[edit]

He was a former Chairman of Cornwall Young Conservatives and after two unsuccessful parliamentary battles in 1992 (Newham North West) and 1997 (Wansdyke), he was finally elected as the Conservative MP for the constituency of Hertford and Stortford in 2001. He has been promoted from the backbenches to serve at various points as Shadow Financial Secretary, Shadow Minister for Economic Affairs, an opposition whip and Shadow Minister for Business and Enterprise. He is author of several pamphlets on urban design.

On 9 September 2019 he wrote to the chairman of his local Conservative Association to declare that he would not be standing at the next general election.[4]

Shadow Minister for Cornwall[edit]

On 26 July 2007, David Cameron then Leader of the Opposition appointed Mark Prisk as Shadow Minister for Cornwall, although there was no government post of Minister for Cornwall for the opposition to formally shadow. The party said that the move was intended to help place the county's concerns "at the heart of Conservative thinking". Conservative Party leader David Cameron said he wholeheartedly endorsed the appointment and it would ensure that the voice of Cornwall was heard.[5] The post was discontinued following the 2010 general election, and there remains no "minister for Cornwall" or "Shadow Minister for Cornwall".

Liberal Democrat MP Matthew Taylor accused the Conservative Party of using the appointment in a bid to get around the rule that requires MPs to limit the local cases they take up to their own constituency, by claiming that party political activity by MPs outside their own constituencies was in the role of "Shadow Minister" for the areas concerned, despite there being no actual Minister to shadow.[6]

Mark Prisk defended his role as Shadow Minister for Cornwall in open letter to the Falmouth Packet dated Wednesday 28 November 2007. He noted that, "as a born and bred Cornishman", his role is to listen to the concerns of people in Cornwall, to feed these back to the Shadow Cabinet, and to make sure that Conservative policies properly reflect the needs of Cornwall.[7]


Prisk campaigned to remain in the European Union in the lead-up to the 2016 referendum on Britain's membership,[8] but after the referendum result he supported the implementation of Britain's withdrawal and Prime Minister Theresa May's 12 point plan.[9] His constituency voted to Remain by a narrow majority (50.76% v. 49.24%).[10]

In Government[edit]

Prisk was appointed as the minister for Business and Enterprise in the Coalition government, until he was shifted to become the Housing minister on 5 September 2012.[11]

As Minister for Housing, Prisk was responsible for creating a "Future High Street Forum" to support struggling High Street retailers, but was asked to step down from the front benches in 2013, which he claimed was to make way for a younger generation when in fact his replacement was older.[12]

Personal life[edit]

He married Lesley Titcomb, who became CEO at The Pensions Regulator, in April 1989 in Oxfordshire.[13]


  1. ^ "Mark Prisk". Retrieved 16 June 2019.
  2. ^ Heaven, Will (7 October 2013). "MPs' reshuffle: as it happened". The Daily Telegraph. London.
  3. ^ People - Mark Prisk Conservative Party website
  4. ^ Prisk, Mark (9 September 2019). "Today I have announced that I will not be standing at the next general election. Read my full statement". @PriskMark. Retrieved 9 September 2019.
  5. ^ Mark Prisk appointed Shadow Minister for Cornwall. 24 July 2007. Retrieved 9 May 2016 – via YouTube.
  6. ^ "'Fictional Minister' Prompts Row". BBC News. 17 March 2009. Retrieved 12 February 2010.
  7. ^ Mid Devon Star 28 November 2007[permanent dead link]
  8. ^ Goodenough, Tom (16 February 2016). "Which Tory MPs back Brexit, who doesn't and who is still on the fence?". The Spectator. Retrieved 11 October 2016.
  9. ^ "Brexit".
  10. ^ "Hertford and Stortford Election Results". Democratic Dashboard.
  11. ^ Kelly, Liam (5 September 2012). "Mark Prisk replaces Grant Shapps as housing minister – what should his priorities be?". Guardian. Retrieved 29 March 2015.
  12. ^ Neville, Simon (8 October 2013). "Protests as PM sacks Mark Prisk, Minister for High Streets". Independent. Retrieved 29 March 2015.
  13. ^ "New housing minister Mark Prisk is surveyor..." Estate Agent Today. Retrieved 4 May 2019.

External links[edit]

News articles
Video clips
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Bowen Wells
Member of Parliament for Hertford and Stortford
Succeeded by
Julie Marson