Paul Masterton

Paul Masterton (born 2 November 1985) is a Scottish Conservative Party politician. He was the Member of Parliament (MP) for East Renfrewshire from 2017 to 2019.[1]

Paul Masterton
Official Parliamentary portrait, June 2017
Member of Parliament
for East Renfrewshire
In office
8 June 2017  6 November 2019
Preceded byKirsten Oswald
Succeeded byKirsten Oswald
Personal details
Born (1985-11-02) 2 November 1985 (age 35)
Edinburgh, Scotland
Political partyConservative
Alma materUniversity of Dundee

Early life

Masterton was born on 2 November 1985 in Edinburgh. He attended Buckstone Primary School and George Watson's College. He went on to graduate with a law degree from the University of Dundee in 2007.[2]


After completing his Diploma in Legal Practice in 2008, Masterton obtained a traineeship with the law firm McGrigors, working in their Glasgow and Belfast offices. In 2010, Masterton became a newly qualified solicitor specialising in Pensions[3] and long-term savings, continuing to work with McGrigors, latterly Pinsent Masons, for 9 years, until his election.[4]

Masterton was Chairman of his local community council.[clarification needed]


Before entering the UK Parliament, Masterton first stood in the 2016 Scottish Parliament election as the Scottish Conservative Party candidate for Paisley. He was unsuccessful, receiving 3,533 votes.[5]

In the 2017 General Election, Masterton was the Scottish Conservative Party candidate for East Renfrewshire. Masterton was successful, receiving 21,496 votes, defeating the SNP's Kirsten Oswald by 4,712 votes.[1]

In Parliament, Masterton was the Co-chair of the All Party Parliamentary Groups on British Jews and Surgical Mesh, and Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Democratic Participation.[6] He was an active member of a number of other APPGs including those on Surrogacy, Pensions, Equitable Life, Post Offices and Single Parents.

Between September 2018 and March 2019 Masterton served as the Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Ministerial Team at the Home Office. Masterton resigned his role on 13 March 2019 in order to vote against the Government and oppose the United Kingdom leaving the European Union without a deal on 31 March 2019.[7]

As a former pensions solicitor, Masterton was vocal campaigner on pensions issues. In October 2018, he brought a 10 Minute Rule Bill to introduce a new form of pension scheme into the UK, known as Defined Collective Contribution. This followed the agreement between Royal Mail and the Communication Workers Union to establish such a scheme for Royal Mail workers in replacement of their final salary scheme. The Bill was adopted as Government policy and a consultation into Collective Defined Contribution Schemes was launched by the DWP in November 2018.[8]

In April 2019, Masterton led a debate highlighting the impact of the tapered annual allowance on senior clinical staff who were members of the NHS Pension Fund.[9] Masterton worked closely with the BMA and NHS Employers, successfully lobbying the Department for Health and Social Care, and the Treasury, to make changes to the Scheme and launch a review into the operation of the annual allowance taper.

On 12 December 2018, during Prime Minister's Questions, Masterton raised the death of a 13-year-old constituent who committed suicide as a result of cyberbullying.[10] Masterton continued to campaign on the issues of self-harm and suicide prevention in young people, and successfully campaigned for the inclusion of a statutory duty of care on technology companies in the Government's Online Harms White Paper.[11]

Masterton voted Remain in the 2016 EU Referendum and was a vocal supporter of securing a withdrawal agreement from the European Union.[12] In November 2017, Masterton was listed by The Daily Telegraph as one of fifteen Tory "Brexit mutineers",[13] within a week he had received an anonymous Christmas card describing him as a "traitor".[14]

Masterton was opposed to a second Scottish independence referendum.

For the 2019 general election, Masterton stood again for the East Renfrewshire seat but was defeated by Kristen Oswald who was re-elected as the SNP candidate with a majority of 5,426 votes (9.8%) – larger than her previous majority in 2015.[15]

Personal life

Masterton lives with his wife and two children.[citation needed]


  1. Reilly, Jonathon (9 June 2017). "Conservative candidate wins East Renfrewshire seat in General Election". Barrhead News.
  2. Farquarson, Kenny (26 March 2018). "Paul Masterton: the making of a softly spoken, mild‑mannered Brexit mutineer". The Times. Times Newspapers. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  3. "Profiles of the new Scottish MPs". Dods Group PLC. 21 June 2017. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  4. Summan, Kapil (13 December 2019). "A good night for lawyers". Scottish Legal News. Scottish Legal News Ltd. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  5. "Paisley Scottish Parliament constituency". BBC. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  6. "Register Of All-Party Parliamentary Groups as at 6 June 2018: British Jews". The Committee Office House of Commons.
  7. "Paul Masterton resigns after voting down no-deal Brexit". HeraldScotland. Retrieved 27 August 2019.
  8. Planner, Retirement (6 November 2018). "DWP launches consultation to legislate for CDC". Retirement Planner. Retrieved 27 August 2019.
  9. "Scottish Pensions Update: Information and guidance - BMA Scotland Community - Blog - BMA Scotland Community - BMA - Connecting doctors". Retrieved 27 August 2019.
  10. "Calls to tackle cyberbullying following teen suicide". Tes. Retrieved 27 August 2019.
  11. "Tech firms in UK to be legally required to protect users from harmful content". Retrieved 27 August 2019.
  12. "East Renfrewshire MP Paul Masterton backs 'MPs for a Deal'".
  13. Swinford, Steven (14 November 2017). "The Brexit mutineers: At least 15 Tory MPs rebel against leave date with threat to join forces with Labour". The Telegraph. Retrieved 25 August 2018.
  14. Staff writer (21 November 2017). "Scottish Tory MP sent 'traitor' Christmas card over Brexit". BBC News. Retrieved 25 August 2018.
  15. "Renfrewshire East parliamentary constituency - Election 2019". Retrieved 30 March 2020.