Born In: Liverpool, United Kingdom
British Conservative Party politician, author, and TV personality Nadine Dorries has served as the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport from September 2021 to September 2022. She has previously also served as the British Minister of State for Patient Safety, Suicide Prevention, and Mental Health and has been serving as the Member of Parliament for Mid Bedfordshire since 2005. Born to working-class parents and raised amid poverty, she initially trained as a nurse. Married to a mining engineer, she later launched her own day-care brand, which she eventually sold. As a culture secretary, she attempted to privatize Channel 4 and chose the new Ofcom chairman. A talented writer, too, she has penned the bestselling series of novels known as the Four Streets Saga series. She was temporarily suspended from the Conservative Party whip for appearing on the reality show I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here! She later started her own talk show, too.
Also Known As: Nadine Vanessa Bargery
Spouse/Ex-: Paul Dorries (m. 1983–2007), Raymond Hughes
Born Country: England
education: Halewood Grange Comprehensive School
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Nadine Dorries was born Nadine Vanessa Bargery, on May 21, 1957, in Liverpool, Merseyside, England, UK, to George and Sylvia Bargery. Her father was a bus driver and lift operator.
While she has Irish Catholic roots from her father, she also has Anglican roots from her mother. Growing up in the Anfield district of Liverpool, she initially attended the Rose Heath Primary School.
She then joined the Halewood Grange Comprehensive School, before moving to Runcorn. In 1975, she started her nursing training at the Warrington General Hospital.
Raised by working-class parents, Nadine had a difficult childhood. Her parents had a hard time paying rent and arranging for food on many occasions. She also spent a lot of time with her Irish grandmother in Mayo.
Dorries later spoke about being abused by a priest and family friend when she was 9. The incident, however, was not reported to the police.
Her parents divorced when she was in her early teens. Her father later fell sick and was diagnosed with Raynaud's disease. She stayed with her ailing father while training for nursing. He died when Dorries was in her early 20s. She also lost her younger brother, John, in a car accident, when he was 26.
From 1978 to 1981, Nadine Dorries worked as a nurse in Warrington and then in Liverpool. In 1982, she joined Ethicla Ltd. as a medical representative. She then moved to Zambia (where her husband managed a copper mine) in 1983 and headed a community school for a year.
Dorries established her own child day-care brand Company Kids Ltd. in 1987. She sold the company to BUPA in 1998. She later also worked as a director at BUPA.
In 2000, Nadine Dorries was named as the prospective parliamentary candidate (PPC) for Hazel Grove. She was also deselected briefly in August that year but was later supported by the Conservative Central Office.
In the 2001 general election, she made an unsuccessful attempt to succeed Liberal Democrat candidate Andrew Stunell. Stunell not only retained the seat but gained it with a majority of over 8,000 votes.
Following this, Dorries worked as a special advisor to Oliver Letwin for 3 years, when he was a Shadow Chancellor. Her main task, during this period, was maintain his relations with the media.
In 2005, she was finally elected as a Member of Parliament for Mid Bedfordshire. She assumed office on May 5 that year.
Soon, Dorries led a campaign to reduce the time limit for an abortion from 24 weeks to 21 weeks. The campaign was eventually successful.
In November 2012, Dorries, the first sitting MP to appear on the ITV reality show I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here!, had her Tory whip removed. She had apparently not informed her party about her upcoming absence from Parliament. The Conservatives reinstated her after 6 months.
In 2014, the Conservative Party introduced a legislation for same-sex marriage. However, she ended up voting against it. She later stated that it was her "biggest regret as an MP.”
She supported Brexit during the 2016 EU Referendum and called for the resignation of Prime Minister David Cameron after he chose Remain. She is also known for her tiffs with fellow Conservative Party member George Osborne.
In July 2019, she took over as the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Patient Safety, Suicide Prevention, and Mental Health, under the Department of Health and Social Care in Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s administration.
In May 2020, she became the Minister of State for Patient Safety, Suicide Prevention, and Mental Health, and held on to the post till September 2021. She once revealed that her own cousin had committed suicide earlier.
On September 15, 2021, she was appointed the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport. Prime Minister Boris Johnson was highly criticized by many in the political sphere for choosing Dorries as the culture secretary, owing to her stints on popular TV shows.
In her capacity as the culture secretary, Dorries oversaw issues such as cyber security and online hazards for young people. She also reviewed the management of football in England. Dorries was highly criticized in 2020, when she retweeted false allegations about Labour politician Keir Starmer, related to his tenure as head of the Crown Prosecution Service.
As the culture secretary, she was also responsible for setting strategies in broadcasting, tourism, sport, and museums. In March 2022, she chose media executive and fellow Conservative Party member Michael Grade as the new chairman of the Office of Communications, or Ofcom.
She continued as the British cultural secretary till September 2022. During her tenure, she made failed attempts to privatize Channel 4 and to reduce the BBC license fee. In January 2023, she criticized the government for supposedly abandoning the plan to privatize Channel 4.
In early 2023, she was accused of breaking the ministerial code again, by appearing as a chat show host on her TalkTV show Friday Night with Nadine, without informing the Parliament. Her first guest on the show was former British prime minister and her fellow Conservative Party member Boris Johnson. She thus became the fourth sitting MP from the Conservative Party to host a show on an opinion-led TV channel.
Nadine Dorries married her first husband, Raymond Hughes, in March 1978. The couple divorced in 1979.
She then married mining engineer Paul Dorries in 1984. They had three children: daughters Philippa, Jennie, and Cassie, before divorcing in 2007.
Dorries is a huge supporter of Liverpool F.C. She is often criticized for her mispronunciations in her speeches and once admitted to being diagnosed with dyslexia.
Dorries bagged The Spectator's Readers’ Representative Award in 2008. She has also been honored with the honorific prefix The Right Honourable for life.
In 2010, Dorries was seen in the Channel 4 documentary series Tower Block of Commons. The series challenged politicians to live at a council estate, on a jobseeker's allowance.
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