Mark Lancaster MP

Mark was born in 1970 and raised in Kimbolton near Huntingdon. He was educated at Kimbolton School and on leaving spent a gap year Commission in the Army based in Hong Kong with the Queens Gurkha Engineers. He then went on to read Business Studies at Buckingham University and completed an MBA at Exeter University, before returning to help run the family business, Kimbolton Fireworks.

During this period, Mark transferred his commission to the Territorial Army in 1990 and during 28 years military service has commanded a Royal Engineer Bomb Disposal Squadron and deployed on operational service to Kosovo, Bosnia and Afghanistan. Awarded the Territorial Decoration in 2002, Mark received his second long service medal, the VRSM in 2011 and Bar in 2016. He continues to serve as a Lieutenant Colonel in the Royal Engineers and is currently a Member of the Royal College of Defence Studies.

Mark's political career started as a local councillor in Huntingdon before becoming the first pyrotechnician to be elected to the House of Commons in 2005. After holding posts as Opposition Whip, Shadow Minister in the Department for International Development and Lord Commissioner of the Her Majesty's Treasury, Mark was appointed Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Defence Personnel and Veterans following the 2015 General Election. He is married to Caroline Dinenage MP.


2005
Mark spearheaded the I before E campaign which sought to ensure that Milton Keynes has the infrastructure it required before further expansion.

Mark begins his mobile surgeries - visiting the rural areas in vehicles loaned by local businesses

2006
Mark campaigned for the rights of service men and women and has been pressing the government to hold a review into their treatment

Mark leads a parliamentary delegation in 2006 to investigate the shortcomings of the broadband provision in the UK

2007
Mark campaigned for plastic bottles to be used at big public events, following the death of a constituent.

2009
Mark gives his backing to the new 'Community Right to Buy' which would allow not-for-profit community groups across Milton Keynes to take over the running of struggling local facilities, from post offices to pubs to parks.

2010
Six weeks after the General Election Mark is given a governmental role as the Private Secretary to the Secretary of State for International Development. The unpaid role is the junior ministerial job in the Department that he was shadowing for the three years in the run up to last month's General Election.

Mark started a campaign against multi-occupancy houses following two tragic deaths in Fishermead in September

Mark started a campaign against the legal loophole that allows private hire taxi firms to register in Northamptonshire, yet operate almost exclusively in Milton Keynes by raising the matter in the House of Commons

Following an adjournment debate by Mark in Parliament, the government reconsidered its admissions process in light of difficulties experienced by local residents with school placements

Mark plays a key role in helping steer Parliament through a new law aimed at making it illegal for the UK to continue to use cluster bombs in warfare.

Mark calls for an introduction of superfast broadband, at speeds of up to 100 Mbps, to be made available across Milton Keynes. Mark is a fervent supporter of improvements to broadband proficiency

Mark welcomes measures that will protect a village blighted by flooding, securing defences through persistent council meetings and campaigning

Mark highlights the tragic deaths in Fishermead caused by a house of multiple occupation (HMOs). The Prime Minister described the deaths of Bola Ejifunmilayo and her three year old daughter Fiyin as an 'absolutely tragic case'. Mark continues to raise the issue of HMOs

2011
Mark's campaign against the drug Khat started and still continues to run. He has approached the Home Secretary and is awaiting the results of the Drugs Advisory Council which are due in October. The campaign is a result of several complaints from his constituents about the damaging social and health effects of the drug

Mark visits the Milton Keynes Credit Union (MKCU), based in Wolverton Square, to find out how the financial co-operative works, and begins a campaign to promote their use over high streets. After five years of operation, MKCU, staffed largely by volunteers, offers its 380 members the chance to save and borrow. The member for Milton Keynes North was shocked to hear about the loan sharks who target vulnerable residents, offering them instant cash with exorbitant repayment rates.

Mark introduced a Bill to Parliament which has allowed the Royal Mint to produce a special coin to mark the 2012 Olympic Games in London.

2012
Mark made representations to The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs about Khat which they have been requested to review by the Home Secretary. The ACMD are due to reach their decision in December. Mark also hosted an adjournment debate in the Commons.

Mark raises adoption in parliament, following the introduction of the Children and Families Bill in the Queen's Speech.

Mark was appointed the Lord Commissioner for Her Majesty's Treasury during the re-shuffle of the cabinet in September.

Mark represents the UK Government in the Falkland Islands on Remembrance Day

2014
Valentines Day saw the marriage of Mark to Caroline Dinenage MP for Gosport in the Chapel of St Mary Undercroft at the House of Commons.

After a five year campaign, Mark achieved an historic vote in Parliament to classify the plant known as Khat as a class C drug. Khat is a plant grown in Kenya and chewed mainly by the East African Community in the UK. The campaign started after Mark was approached by his Somali constituents, who were increasingly concerned at the impact the drug was having on social cohesion and family breakdown in Milton Keynes.  

Dementia hits the headlines and Mark instigates a forum for all parties actively involved in offering support for those living with the condition and their carers.  

2015

Having lobbied hard for extra fair funding for MK healthcare, the Government awarded Milton Keynes the 4th highest increase in the UK and an extra £2.9m for the A&E at MK Hospital.

General election night on 5th May sees Mark returned for a third term with an increased majority. 

The Prime Minister appoints Mark as Under Secretary of State for Defence, responsible for defence personnel & veterans within the Ministry of Defence.