Matthew Gordon-Banks

Biography

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About Matthew Gordon-Banks

Matthew was born in 1961 and has lived in Morayshire Scotland, Norfolk, Wirral and in later life is primarily based in the Cotswolds. He married in 1992 and has two grown-up children both working in the Education sector. He is an Honours graduate in History & Economics and has an MBA from the Donald Harrison School of Business at SE Missouri State University. Commissioned into The Gordon Highlanders as a regular officer, his career was cut short when he was war pensioned in 1984. He had hoped to make the Army his career until that point. In 1984 he joined Barclays Bank working in domestic branch banking and at the then LHO Head Office in Liverpool. He was elected (Con) as a Member of Wirral Borough Council later in 1984, becoming Chairman of the Wirral Education Authority in 1985. He stood down after serving as a councillor for six years. Subsequently, at the 1987 General Election he was the Conservative Parliamentary candidate in Manchester Central retaining, for the last time for the Conservatives, second place in votes. In 1989 he resigned from Barclays Bank and moved to London to become Private Secretary to Cecil Franks MP, a Manchester solicitor, highly successful businessman and for eight years the Member of Parliament for Barrow and Furness. Later that year he was selected as prospective parliamentary candidate for Southport, a seat the Conservatives had lost at the 1987 General Election. Against the expectations of many, but after 3 years of campaigning, he won the seat in 1992 and served as an MP until his defeat in 1997 and the election of a Labour Government.

Matthew served on:

  • The House of Commons Transport Select Committee 1992-7
  • European Standing Committee A
  • Various Housing , Planning & Local Government Bill Committees. He was Appointed Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Ministers at the Department of the Environment in 1996.
  • Served with Quasi-Judicial power on the Cross Rail Bill – later called the Elizabeth Line.

Matthew was:

  • Founder of the Anglo-Bahrain Parliamentary Group in 1996 and joint founder, with Lord Foulkes (Lab), of the British-Cayman Islands Parliamentary Group
  • Secretary of the Anglo-UAE Parliamentary Group 1992-7 Chairman of the Anglo-Venezuela Parliamentary group pre-revolution
  • Instrumental in achieving safety improvements to Roll on-Roll-off Ferries and compulsory seat belts for busses and coaches, especially for children.

Post 1997:

  • Matthew was appointed an Advisor, separately and concurrently, by and to the Governments of Kuwait, Bahrain and the UAE.
  • He lectured extensively in Business & International Relations at various Universities in the United States.
  • He was elected, 2000-4, as a Member (Ind Con) of Cotswold District Council, serving as its Chairman of the Overview & Scrutiny Committee.
  • Senior Research Fellow at the Advanced Research Assessment Group of the UK Defence Academy, Ministry of Defence.
In 2003 Matthew was appointed Snr Research Fellow at the UK Defence Academy & specialising in the Islamic threat, the Middle East & South Asia. He was sent to Pakistan with the Mission statement to help “Prevent Pakistan imploding during its transition from Dictatorship to Democracy”. This period ended following the largely bloodless transfer of power from General Pervez Musharraf to a civilian elected government. During this period, Matthew’s accommodation in Pakistan was targeted by Islamic extremists who sought to murder. In 2008 a huge tractor-trailer driven bomb was parked outside his window and the front entrance of his accommodation. It exploded killing over 50 people including two American service personnel and creating a crater 20 feet deep. This was one of two incidents causing complex PTSD which he manages today, in addition to physical injuries. Ten years later, United States forces killed the perpetrator in a drone attack.

Russian Federation:

Matthew has been a commentator on Russian Affairs for some years. He first visited Moscow and the Soviet Union in 1984 and has maintained his academic interest ever since. Since 2014 he has been active in seeking to modestly improve relations between the UK, the ‘West’ and the Russian Federation; and has been a frequent visitor, maintaining links with a wide cross-section of personalities & organisations. He has never received any money from any Russian organisation.
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