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Memorable Midlands MP moments

Memorable Midlands MP moments Photo: PA / Michael Fabricant
Credit: Twitter/Michael Fabricant

We start this round-up with the MP for Lichfield during the last Parliament, Michael Fabricant, who you could always count on to cause a stir.

Known for his unruly shock of blond hair, he appeared in the Commons in November 2013 sporting, in addition, an enormous moustache.

He explained later he was taking part in the 'Movember' campaign to raise awareness of men's health.

Credit: PA

Nigel Mills, the most recent MP for Amber Valley, was forced to apologise last year after he was caught playing popular online game 'Candy Crush' during a House of Commons committee meeting on pension reform. He later apologised "unreservedly".

A fellow MP leapt to his defence saying,

I survived nine years as chairman of the Public Accounts Committee and I just about managed not to go to sleep and not to play computer games but my God, it was boring.

– Sir Edward Leigh, Tory MP for Gainsborough
Credit: Steve Parsons/PA Archive/Press Association Images

Veteran Conservative politician and the last MP for Rushcliffe Ken Clarke was forced into a public clarification of his views in 2011 after running into difficulties during a radio interview.

He appeared to suggest that there were different kinds of rape during a discussion about jail sentences in the light of early guilty pleas. He later said that "all rape is a serious crime" and that he had made a "poor choice of words."

Aidan Burley, the Cannock Chase MP who stood down after just one term, organised a Nazi themed stag party for his best friend. The event in a French ski resort in 2011 was captured on camera by a newspaper.

Mr Burley was sacked from his job as a government aide and a report found his actions were "offensive and foolish but not racist". He always insisted he meant no offence.

Credit: TOBY MELVILLE/WPA Rota/Press Association Images

As the outgoing Chief Secretary to the Treasury in 2010, the Labour MP for Birmingham, Hodge Hill, Liam Byrne famously left a note for his successor declaring "there's no money". He claimed it was typical banter between politicians, but the last Government repeatedly referred to it when justifying widespread cuts.

Credit: Twitter

Tristram Hunt, the last MP for Stoke-on-Trent Central, came under fire in his role as Shadow Education Secretary when he appeared to tell a teachers' group to "stop moaning".

And then there's 'Plebgate' - the saga involving a confrontation between Andrew Mitchell, the cycling MP for Sutton Coldfield, and police officers at the gates of Downing Street - which rolled on and on during the last Parliament.

Mr Mitchell always denied using the controversial word "pleb" but a judge ruled against him last year and the police officer involved accepted £80,000 in damages.

Credit: Sean Dempsey/PA Archive/Press Association Images

Tom Watson, the last MP for West Bromwich East, was involved in efforts to reform press regulation after the phone hacking scandal; Jack Dromey, the Birmingham, Erdington MP blamed a technical malfunction after he appeared to 'favourite' a male porn website on Twitter, and Northamptonshire MP Brian Binley referred to David Cameron as a 'chamber-maid' for his coalition partner Nick Clegg.

Let's see if the next intake of MPs generate the same quantity of lively headlines.