My parents were both teachers. My brother and I went to the local primary school, and then I won a scholarship to Taunton School. From there, I went on to read Law at Exeter University.
As a family, we were not party political, but we always talked about current affairs, so I became interested in politics.
After university I pursued a career in the law because I had always wanted to be an advocate. I have always derived great satisfaction and a sense of fulfilment from helping someone to make their case, but I began to think how much better it would be if, rather than just representing one person as a barrister, I could represent thousands of people as their Member of Parliament.
That led to me seeking selection as a prospective parliamentary candidate for the Conservatives. I was delighted to be chosen to represent the party in Rugby and Kenilworth in 2003 and even more delighted to win the seat back from Labour in 2005. Following a Boundary Review, I have been elected as MP for Kenilworth and Southam in 2010, 2015, 2017 and 2019.
In Opposition, I was a member of the Justice Select Committee, and I founded the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Dementia. I chaired the group until 2010, when my appointment to the Government, as a Whip, meant that I could no longer continue in this role.
In 2012 I was appointed to the position of Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Ministry of Justice with responsibility for the prison service, probation, rehabilitation and sentencing.
In the Government reshuffle in July 2014, I was promoted to be Attorney General, chief legal adviser to the Government. The role also oversees the Crown Prosecution Service, the Serious Fraud Office and Her Majesty’s Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate.
I served as Secretary of State at the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport from 9th July 2018 until the new Prime Minister took office on 24th July 2019.
From November 2019 to November 2022, I served on the Committee on Standards in Public Life.
I was knighted in the Queen’s 2022 Birthday Honours for political and public service.
I am currently a member of The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament (ISC), and I chair the APPG on Digital Regulation and Responsibility.