Mike Weatherley

Michael Richard Weatherley (2 July 1957 – 20 May 2021) was a British Conservative Party politician who was the Member of Parliament (MP) for Hove in East Sussex from 2010 to 2015.[1][2][3]

Mike Weatherley
Weatherley in 2010
Member of Parliament
for Hove
In office
6 May 2010  30 March 2015
Preceded byCelia Barlow
Succeeded byPeter Kyle
Personal details
Born(1957-07-02)2 July 1957
Clevedon, Somerset, England
Died20 May 2021(2021-05-20) (aged 63)
Political partyConservative
Alma materLondon South Bank University

Early life

Weatherley was born in Clevedon, Somerset, on 2 July 1957, the son of Derrick and Kirsten Weatherley.[4] He was educated at Kent College, an independent school near Canterbury, Kent, and read business studies at London South Bank University. In 1988, he became a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants.[5] Professing a keen interest in live music, he was finance director of record producer Pete Waterman's group of businesses from 2000 to 2005.[6] In 2007, Weatherley became Vice-President (Europe) for the Motion Picture Licensing Company.[7]

Political career

Weatherley's first parliamentary candidacy was at the 2001 general election in the safe Labour seat of Barking in east London; he increased the Conservative vote share, but came a distant second. Two years later, in 2003, he unsuccessfully stood for a council seat (Hollingbury and Stanmer) in Brighton and Hove.[8] At the next Westminster election, held in 2005, he was the Conservative parliamentary candidate for Brighton, Pavilion,[9] the seat adjacent to Hove. In the event, the seat was held by the incumbent Labour MP, David Lepper, with a majority of over 5,000, and the Conservative vote share declined.[10]

In 2006, Weatherley secured a seat on his local Crawley Borough Council, winning the Conservative-held ward of Furnace Green, and defeating the Labour candidate, 2005 Big Brother contestant Eugene Sully.[11][12][13][14] Weatherley remained a councillor until the following year.[5]

2006 also saw Weatherley selected by the Hove Conservative Association as their candidate for the next election.[14] He was finally successful in entering parliament at the 2010 general election, in which he defeated the sitting Labour MP Celia Barlow with a majority of 1,868.[15]

In Parliament

Following his election, Weatherley campaigned to have squatting in residential properties criminalised, with the backing of Justice Minister Kenneth Clarke.[16] The campaign was successful and led to a provision in the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012, creating a new offence. In November 2012, he was attacked with vegetables by a group of pro-squatting protesters ahead of a debate on the legislation at the University of Sussex. Weatherley and his staff were eventually led to safety by police.[17] Weatherley rejected claims in March 2013 that, as originator of the legislation, he was responsible for the death of a homeless man who had frozen to death while sleeping outside an empty bungalow.[18]

Weatherley had an interest in protecting intellectual property rights, and was a member of the All Party Parliamentary Intellectual Property Group,[19] one of the main objectives of which is to highlight intellectual property rights. The campaign gained support from musicians such as Alice Cooper.[20] In April 2014, Weatherley called on then-prime minister David Cameron to commit to the permanent funding of the Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit to extend its existence beyond 2015.[21]

Weatherley campaigned against the repeal of the Hunting Act 2004,[22] stating that "hunting foxes with hounds is a cruel and inhumane practice,"[23] and pledging to vote against any measure which would lead to the ban being overturned. He also campaigned against the implementation of the proposed ban on the retail display of tobacco products,[24] arguing that it would damage trade for small businesses.[25] Weatherley wrote to David Cameron in favour of same-sex couples gaining equal marriage rights, also advocating that religious organisations should be forced to register such ceremonies, which caused controversy.[26][27][28]

Weatherley was the Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Business and Retail Crime, along with various other APPGs.[29] He was also a Vice-President of the Debating Group,[30] and a supporter of the Free Enterprise Group.[31]

After a period suffering from cancer of the oesophagus, Weatherley stood down at the 2015 general election.[32]

Personal life

Weatherley had two sons and a daughter with his first wife.[4][6] He subsequently remarried. In February 2010, he separated from his second wife, Brazilian-born Carla Weatherley.[33]

Outside politics, one of his recreations was rock and heavy metal music.[5] In his spare time, he watched bands perform live in local venues and, in his maiden speech, he pledged that he would wear an Iron Maiden T-shirt in the Chamber of the House of Commons.[5][34] On 15 December 2011, Weatherley announced that he was unable to fulfil his pledge, explaining, "It's not allowed in the Commons, I asked the Speaker if he'd give me permission and he said no."[35]

Weatherley was a keen cyclist, having participated in the London to Brighton bike ride and, along with 44 other cyclists, raised £230,000 for Childline and Nordoff Robbins by participating in a 100 mile charity bike ride along the Nile in Egypt.[7] He was also a qualified ski instructor and football referee, and played centre-forward for the Martha Gunners.[7] In Who's Who, he also listed motorbikes as a recreation.[5]

He died on 20 May 2021, aged 63, having suffered from lung cancer.[36]


  1. "TheyWorkForYou.com". TheyWorkForYou.com. Retrieved 9 June 2011.
  2. "Election results in The Argus". Theargus.co.uk. Retrieved 9 June 2011.
  3. "BBC Election 2010". BBC News. Retrieved 9 June 2011.
  4. "The Argus candidate profile". Theargus.co.uk. Retrieved 9 June 2011.
  5. "Weatherley, Mike, (born 2 July 1957), Vice Chairman, Motion Picture Licensing Corporation, since 2015". WHO'S WHO & WHO WAS WHO. doi:10.1093/ww/9780199540884.013.u251143. Retrieved 29 May 2021.
  6. "Mike Weatherley selected as Conservative Parliamentary Spokesman for Brighton Pavilion". mikeweatherley.org.uk. February 2004. Archived from the original on 14 October 2006. Retrieved 21 May 2021.
  7. "Biography". Mike Weatherley MP. Archived from the original on 25 May 2011. Retrieved 9 June 2011.
  8. "Local Elections Archive Project - 2003 - Brighton and Hove". www.andrewteale.me.uk. Retrieved 29 May 2021.
  9. Archived 2 December 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  10. "BBC NEWS | Election 2005 | Results | Brighton Pavilion". news.bbc.co.uk. Retrieved 29 May 2021.
  11. "Local Elections Archive Project — Furnace Green Ward". www.andrewteale.me.uk. Retrieved 29 May 2021.
  12. "Crawley Borough election results 2007". Crawley.gov.uk. 5 May 2011. Archived from the original on 8 June 2011. Retrieved 9 June 2011.
  13. https://web.archive.org/web/20061014044423/http://www.mikeweatherley.org.uk/fgintouch.doc. Archived from the original on 14 October 2006. Retrieved 9 May 2010. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  14. https://web.archive.org/web/20081202044849/http://www.mikeweatherley.org.uk/hoveselection.htm. Archived from the original on 2 December 2008. Retrieved 9 May 2010. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  15. "Hove (Constituency) 2010 results - General election results - UK Parliament". electionresults.parliament.uk. Retrieved 29 May 2021.
  16. https://web.archive.org/web/20111010180841/http://www.mikeweatherleymp.com/2011/10/04/667/. Archived from the original on 10 October 2011. Retrieved 20 December 2011. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  17. Hastings, Ron (14 November 2012). "'Violent thugs' hurl rocks and tomatoes at Conservative MP Mike Weatherley ahead of squatting debate in Brighton". The Independent. London. Retrieved 13 January 2015.
  18. Hern, Alex (7 March 2013). "Anti-squatting MP denies responsibility for death of homeless man". New Statesman. Retrieved 1 April 2013.
  19. "House of Commons - Register Of All-Party Groups as at 30 March 2015: Intellectual Property". Publications.parliament.uk. Archived from the original on 12 November 2016. Retrieved 15 May 2015.In 2010, he launched a national music competition, "Rock the House",
  20. https://web.archive.org/web/20120212163905/http://www.mikeweatherleymp.com/2011/10/24/alice-cooper-and-mike-weatherley-mp-meet-to-%E2%80%98rock-the-house%E2%80%99/. Archived from the original on 12 February 2012. Retrieved 20 December 2011. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  21. "UK Prime Minister Asked for Permanent Police Anti-Piracy Unit Funding". TorrentFreak. 14 April 2014. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  22. Bowcott, Owen (28 October 2010). "Foxhunting ban likely to remain thanks to new generation of Tory MPs | UK news". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 9 June 2011.
  23. "Mike Against Fox Hunting". Mike Weatherley MP. 28 October 2010. Archived from the original on 14 July 2011. Retrieved 9 June 2011.
  24. "ConservativeHome's Platform: Mike Weatherley MP: Listen to our nation of shopkeepers - and don't force through a tobacco display ban". Conservativehome.blogs.com. 30 September 2010. Retrieved 9 June 2011.
  25. "Hove MP to fight tobacco display ban (From The Argus)". Theargus.co.uk. 25 October 2010. Retrieved 9 June 2011.
  26. https://web.archive.org/web/20111031121616/http://www.mikeweatherleymp.com/2011/09/05/same-sex-couples-should-have-exactly-the-same-marriage-rights/. Archived from the original on 31 October 2011. Retrieved 3 November 2011. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  27. Caldwell, Simon (8 September 2011). "Tory MP urges Cameron to crack down on churches that refuse to hold same-sex ceremonies". CatholicHerald.co.uk. Retrieved 15 May 2015.
  28. Jessica Geen, 'Tory MP calls for churches to be banned from holding marriages if they refuse gay couples', in Pink News, 2 September 2011
  29. "Parliamentary Posts". Mike Weatherley MP. Archived from the original on 25 May 2011. Retrieved 9 June 2011.
  30. "The Debating Group". Debatinggroup.org.uk. 24 March 2014. Archived from the original on 5 April 2015. Retrieved 15 May 2015.
  31. "Welcome | Free Enterprise Group". Freeenterprise.org.uk. Retrieved 15 May 2015.
  32. "Hove MP to stand down at next election". Brightonandhovenews.org. 3 July 2014. Retrieved 15 May 2015.
  33. "Hove MP shock over wife "prostitute" allegations". The Argus. 6 September 2010. Retrieved 9 June 2011.
  34. "European Affairs: 3 Jun 2010: House of Commons debates". TheyWorkForYou.com. Retrieved 9 June 2011.
  35. "MP banned from Maiden T-shirt in House of Commons". BBC News. 15 December 2011. Retrieved 16 December 2011.
  36. "Mike Weatherley obituary". The Times. 25 May 2021.