Open main menu

Sir Gregory Knight (born 4 April 1949) is a British politician and author. He is Conservative parliamentary candidate for East Yorkshire.

Sir Gregory Knight
Greg knight speaks at meeting.jpg
Vice-Chamberlain of the Household
In office
4 September 2012 – 7 October 2013
Prime MinisterDavid Cameron
Preceded byMark Francois
Succeeded byDesmond Swayne
Minister of State for Energy and Industry
In office
23 July 1996 – 2 May 1997
Prime MinisterJohn Major
Preceded byTimothy Eggar
Succeeded byJohn Battle
Deputy Chief Government Whip
Treasurer of the Household
In office
7 June 1993 – 23 July 1996
Prime MinisterJohn Major
Preceded byDavid Heathcoat-Amory
Succeeded byAndrew MacKay
Lord Commissioner of the Treasury
In office
25 July 1990 – 27 May 1993
Prime MinisterMargaret Thatcher
John Major
Preceded byMichael Fallon
Succeeded byAndrew MacKay
Member of Parliament
for East Yorkshire
In office
7 June 2001 – 6 November 2019
Preceded byJohn Townend
Succeeded byElection in progress
Majority15,006 (27.8%)
Member of Parliament
for Derby North
In office
9 June 1983 – 1 May 1997
Preceded byPhilip Whitehead
Succeeded byBob Laxton
Personal details
Born (1949-04-04) 4 April 1949 (age 70)
Blaby, Leicestershire, England
Political partyConservative
Spouse(s)Janet Ormond[1]
Alma materThe College of Law

Education and professional lifeEdit

Born in Blaby, Leicestershire, Knight was educated at Alderman Newton’s Grammar School, Leicester, and the College of Law Guildford, qualifying as a solicitor in 1973.

Political careerEdit

Knight served as a Leicester City Councillor for Castle Ward and Leicestershire County Councillor for Evington Division from 1976 to 1981.

He was MP for Derby North from 1983 until the 1997 election, when he lost his seat. He returned to the House of Commons in 2001 after successfully contesting the East Yorkshire seat.

As a backbencher, in the 1980s, he succeeded in amending licensing law in England and Wales by doubling 'drinking up time' on licensed premises from ten to twenty minutes, a concession that was welcomed by the industry and drinkers alike. However the 2003 Licensing Act ended standard permitted hours and provides for an unspecified drinking up time determined by the licensee’s discretion.

He is in favour of bringing back capital punishment and spoke out against the Apartheid government of South Africa during the 1980s.

He was deputy Chief Whip under John Major between 1993 and 1996 and Minister of State for Industry at the Department of Trade and Industry from 1996 until the Conservative defeat at the 1997 election. He was made a Privy Councillor in 1995, entitling him to the style "Right Honourable".[2]

He served under Michael Howard as a shadow minister for Environment and Transport until 2005. In the 2005–10 Parliament, he was Chairman of the House of Commons Procedure Committee and on four other House of Commons select committees: the Liaison Committee, Administration Committee, the Committee on Modernisation of the House and the Standards and Privileges Committee. He was re-elected unopposed to the chair of the Procedure Committee in 2010.

He has successfully piloted two of his Private Members Bills into law. In 2011, he was successful in taking through Parliament the Estates of Deceased Persons (Forfeiture Rule and Law of Succession) Act 2011, a bill to make the distribution of estates fairer.[3]

He rejoined the government in September 2012 as a Senior Whip and Vice Chamberlain of the Royal Household, a position he held until October 2013.

In 2018 he introduced his second Private Members Bill, the Parking (Code of Practice) Bill, which mandates the Government to introduce a statutory code of practice for the operators of private car parks, to require transparency and good practice to ensure that motorists are not treated unreasonably. The Bill was passed by Parliament and became an Act in March 2019.[4]

Knight strongly supports amending the smoking ban in pubs.[5] He is a Eurosceptic and is in favour of Britain leaving the EU.[citation needed]

Knight has argued in Parliament for "double summertime", which would see the clocks go forward by two hours during summer.[6]

He is Secretary of the British American Parliamentary Group, one of the largest and most active all-party groups at Westminster. An avid motorist, he is critical of initiatives seen as 'anti-car', such as congestion charging, pedestrianisation schemes, speed humps and some 'park and ride' proposals. He is Chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Historic Vehicles Group [7] and successfully called on the Government to exempt historic vehicles from MOT tests.[8] In 2007, he was named as one of the 50 most influential people worldwide in the Historic Vehicle Movement.[citation needed] In 2011 he was shortlisted as the ‘Industry Champion of the Year’ by the International Historic Motoring Awards, for his work in supporting the historic and classic car movement.[9]

In 2009, The Daily Telegraph reported that Knight had claimed £2,600 in expenses for "driveway repairs" at his constituency home, though Knight stated that his cars were kept separately and paid for out of his own pocket.[10]

Personal lifeEdit

Knight is a classic car enthusiast and owns a number of classic cars.[citation needed]

He plays the drums and is a founder member of MP4[11]—the world's only parliamentary rock group. The others are fellow MPs Kevin Brennan and Peter Wishart and former MP Ian Cawsey.

Knight has backed several other artists on the drums in live shows including George McCrae ("Rock Your Baby") and Fergal Sharkey ("Teenage Kicks")[12] and, in the studio, he played drums backing KT Tunstall, Steve Harley, Ricky Wilson and David Gray on the charity single "You Can't Always Get What You Want" released in December 2016 by Chrysalis Records.[13]

He has written six books, mostly on the subject of political quips and insults.



  • Westminster Words (1988), published by Buchan and Enright
  • Honourable Insults (1990), published by Robson Books
  • Parliamentary Sauce (1993), published by Robson Books
  • Right Honourable Insults (1998), published by Chrysalis Books
  • Naughty Graffiti (2005), published by Anova Books
  • Dishonourable Insults (2011), published by The Robson Press (ISBN 9781849541619)


  1. ^ "Siedmere event hailed a success – "also enjoying the evening were the Rt Hon Greg Knight, MP, his wife Janet"". Archived from the original on 21 April 2011. Retrieved 9 April 2011.
  2. ^ "Privy Counsellors". Privy Council Office. Retrieved 12 May 2015.
  3. ^ "House of Commons Hansard Debates for 04 Mar 2011 (pt 0001)". Hansard. UK Parliament. Retrieved 12 May 2015.
  4. ^ "Parking (Code of Practice) Act 2019". 2019. Retrieved 28 March 2019.
  5. ^ "Shane Frith: Why you should support the campaign to amend the smoking ban". ConservativeHome. Retrieved 12 May 2015.
  6. ^ Williams, Rob (26 October 2013). "Time for debate? Don't forget the clocks go back overnight... but should they?". The Independent. Retrieved 26 March 2015.
  7. ^ "Officers". Parliamentary Historic Vehicles Group. Retrieved 12 May 2015.
  8. ^ Archived 3 January 2013 at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ "Category". International Historic Motoring Awards. Archived from the original on 2 April 2015. Retrieved 12 May 2015.
  10. ^ Jamieson, Alistair (17 May 2009). "Greg Knight: MP's driveway repairs on expenses". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 26 March 2015.
  11. ^ "MP4 The Band". MP4. Retrieved 12 May 2015.
  12. ^ Archived 5 February 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  13. ^ Archived 23 January 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  14. ^ "Knighthoods conferred: Greg Knight MP and John Randall MP". GOV.UK. Retrieved 12 May 2015.

External linksEdit

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Philip Whitehead
Member of Parliament for Derby North
Succeeded by
Bob Laxton
Preceded by
John Townend
Member of Parliament for East Yorkshire
Succeeded by
Election in progress
Political offices
Preceded by
David Heathcoat-Amory
Treasurer of the Household
Succeeded by
Andrew MacKay
Preceded by
Mark Francois
Vice-Chamberlain of the Household