Maggie Throup MP, Member of Parliament for Erewash, has been appointed new chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Furniture Industry Group (APPFIG).
Maggie’s election follows the decision by Stephen McPartland, MP for Stevenage, to step down from the APPFIG role, which he has held since 2010. Stephen will be concentrating on his recently acquired role as chairman of the Regulatory Reform Select Committee and membership of Liaison and Finance Select Committees.
With both Long Eaton and Ilkeston in her constituency, Maggie already has knowledge of, and links, with the furniture industry – and lost no time after her election to chairman of the group to raise a question in the House, asking her ministerial colleagues in charge of the renovation of the Palace of Westminster to give due consideration to British furniture and furnishing providers.
Speaking about her appointment, Maggie said:
“I have seen for myself the fantastic furniture made in my constituency, particularly in Long Eaton which is known as the UK Centre of Quality Upholstery Manufacture. The furniture and furnishings industry is a significant contributor to the British economy, with over 8,000 firms turning over more than £11 billion and employing more than 118,000 people. What’s more, furniture is something we all use, every day - and night - of our lives. It’s practical, aesthetic, it affects our emotions, our health and our wellbeing. It matters and it will be a pleasure to promote and to champion the concerns of the sector in Parliament.”
Jonathan Hindle, chairman of the British Furniture Confederation (BFC), which works closely with the APPFIG, welcomed Maggie’s appointment and paid tribute to the support from Stephen McPartland over the past eight years:
“Working with Stephen since I took over this role in 2016 has been a pleasure. Stephen is a hands-on operator who wants to see things happen when he gets behind them and he has enabled the industry, through the BFC, to get in front of ministers and civil servants and make their point of view heard.
“I’m equally delighted to welcome Maggie Throup to the role. Maggie has already attended a number of APPFIG and BFC functions. She has a number of furniture companies in her constituency and it’s clear that she intends to get stuck right in and do what she can to help forward the cause of the industry in government.”