Paul Hodgson

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Paul Hodgson is the ex-head of communications at Drax Power and a former special adviser to the former energy minister Ed Davey at the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC).

He has been head of government affairs at Royal London since November 2017. Royal London is the UK's largest mutual life and pensions company.

From lobbyist to government adviser

Hodgson was an associate director at lobbying firm Fishburn Hedges, a corporate communications company, from June 2006 until he moved to the DECC in February 2013, replacing Katie Waring.

Among the clients listed at his former firm around the time of his departure was the lobbying group Energy UK, [1] whose members include the UK Nuclear Decommissioning Authority and firms with nuclear interests such as EDF Energy. Another client, Mace has worked with EDF since 2010 to 'develop socio-economic strategies' for EDF's Hinkley Point C new nuclear power station programme in Somerset. [2]
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According to the data released by DECC, Hodgson lunched with the FT, Sunday Telegraph and the Sun newspapers in his first few months at the department. [3]

As a special adviser to Davey, Hodgson was paid an annual salary of £69,000. [4]

His role covered:

- Directly advising the secretary of state on media and external communications
- Directly advising the deputy prime minister on ‘green issues’
- Creating political briefings for both the prime minister and deputy prime minister
- Working with senior civil servants to ensure the secretary of state’s priorities are being developed and delivered
- Influencing the news agenda through briefing political and specialist journalists on government and Liberal Democrat political positions
- Leading a joined-up approach ensuring the secretary of state’s priorities are fed into No 10 and other government departments. [5]

Leaving government

After the 2015 general election and the Liberal Democrats no longer being in government, Hodgson lost his role in DECC. In June 2015 it was announced Hodgson would join Drax Power in a newly-created role of head of media relations. He reports to director of communications Andrew Brown and joins fellow new employee, former lobbyist at Hanover Communications, Chris Woods. 'As well as running the press office and managing a number of external agencies, Hodgson's brief is to help the energy business tell its story and explain the benefits of sustainable biomass for electricity and heat'.[6]

Hodgson left Drax in August 2017 after just over two years, first as its head of media, then head of communications. [7]

Background

Hodgson has also worked for the RAC as a media relations manager. He was a senior adviser to the Liberal Democrats for six years between 1999 and 2005,[8] which included directly advising Steve Webb MP (former pensions minister) on media and policy development. According to Hodgson's LinkedIn profile, 'much of this policy has been implemented under the Coalition Government'.

Affiliations

Resources

See: Fracking lobbying firms

See: Fracking Spads

Notes

  1. Public Affairs Council Register, Fishburn Hedges, Clients for the Period 1 December 2012 - 28 February 2013, acc 14 October 2013
  2. Hinkley Point C nuclear new build socio-economic strategy, Mace, website undated, acc 14 October 2013
  3. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY AND CLIMATE CHANGE HOSPITALITY RECEIVED2 BY SPECIAL ADVISERS, January - March 2013, DECC
  4. Special advisers in post, 30 November 2014 GOV.UK, accessed 30 April 2015
  5. Paul Hodgson, LinkedIn, accessed 2 June 2015
  6. Anna Reynolds Drax hires former DECC special adviser Paul Hodgson as head of media PR Week, 8 June 2015, accessed 8 June 2015.
  7. Paul Hodgson, LinkedIn profile accessed 13 July 2018
  8. Paul Hodgson Special Adviser at DECC, LinkedIn, undated, acc 14 October 2013