About Henry

Henry was born in March 1955. He studied Law at Magdalene College, Cambridge. Having graduated in 1977 he was called to the Bar (Middle Temple) where he served as a barrister for 8 years.

Henry married Emma Whiteley in 1993 and they have a young son, Jamie. Henry was the treasurer of the Lords and Commons Cricket Club, and outside Westminster enjoys country sports and golf.

Whilst an MP Henry took up three unpaid positions with foundations, including: Chairman of the Westminster Foundation for Democracy (http://www.wfd.org/), which is this country’s leading player in helping to build parliamentary and democratic institutions in fragile states; Chairman of the Parliamentary Research Unit (PRU) (https://www.pru.org.uk/) parliament’s leading research body which provides non-party political research to Conservative MPs and Peers; Co-Chairman of the 2015 Global Law Summit Ltd, (http://globallawsummit.com/), which was set up to organise last year’s large international law conference in London which celebrated 800 years of Magna Carta and promoted the UK’s world-beating legal services.

Henry is also on the board of three small private sector companies, and an advisory board member of a private fund management partnership.

Parliamentary Career

Henry was first elected as MP for North West Norfolk in 1983. A specialist in small businesses, countryside and farming issues, defence and Northern Ireland, he was PPS to Malcolm Rifkind (then Defence and Foreign Secretary) from 1991-97.

After losing his seat to Labour in 1997, Henry regained it in the June 2001 election.

Between 1983 and 2003, he served on three different Select Committees - Environment, Norther Ireland and Trade and Industry.

From 2002 to 2005, Henry served as Shadow Minister for Small Businesses, Enterprise and Construction.

From 2005 to 2006, Henry served in the Whips Office.

From 2006 to 2010, Henry was Shadow Minister for Legal Services, the Court Service, the Judiciary and Family Law.

After the Coalition Government was formed in May 2010, Henry joined the Foreign and Commonwealth Office under the Rt. Hon William Hague MP, and up until September 2012, served as the Minister for Africa, the Caribbean, the Overseas Territories, the UN and conflict issues.

From 2013 - 2106 Henry chaired the All Party Group on the Commonwealth.

From 2014 - 2016 Henry was on the HS2 Select Committee, which sat in a quasi-judicial role.

From 2014 - 2018 Henry chaired the Westminster Foundation for Democracy.

From 2014 Henry has chaired the Policy Research Unit (PRU) which is a research organisation based in Parliament providing a resource to Conservative MPs.

In 2016 Henry was awarded a Knighthood in the New Years Honours List for Parliamentary and Public Service.

8th June 2017 Sir Henry was re-elected as MP for North West Norfolk.

In 2018 Henry was appointed the Prime Minister's Trade Envoy to Libya.

In 2019 Henry announced that he would not stand for re-election.