Ben Wallace

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Ben Wallace

Ben Wallace was appointed the UK defence secretary in July 2019, promoted from his previous role as minister of state for security.

He has been the British Conservative Party MP for Wyre and Preston North since 2010 and was re-elected in May 2015 with a majority of 14,151. [1] From 2005 to 2010, he was MP for Lancaster and Wyre.[2]

Wallace was an aide to Ken Clarke during his time as Minister Without Portfolio, and was appointed an assistant government whip in July 2014.[3] In May 2015, Wallace was promoted to parliamentary under secretary of state at the Northern Ireland Office. [4]


After leaving school at 18, Wallace spent a short period as a ski instructor in Austria before entering the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst. He was commissioned into the Scots Guards, aged twenty. Wallace saw operational service in Northern Ireland and Central America, serving as Platoon Commander, Company Commander, Operations Officer and as an Intelligence Officer in Northern Ireland. In 1991 he was Mentioned in Despatches.[5]

Views on fracking

FrackWell.png This article is part of the Spinwatch Fracking Portal and project

'Risible deals'

In an interview with The Telegraph newspaper in August 2013, Wallace 'hit out at the “risible” deals being offered to counties that allow fracking', the controversial method of gas extraction.

Mr Wallace suggested that opposition to fracking will grow and could “delay” shale gas exploitation unless councils are given a far greater proportion of revenue by drilling companies. Currently the Government has an agreement with industry that 1 per cent of any revenue generated will go to the local community where drilling took place. Of that one per cent, just one-third will go to county council coffers.
Although Mr Wallace supports the principle of fracking, he has written to the Prime Minister warning that the Government risks losing support for the process unless it “incentivises” local communities. “I was pleased… when the Government accepted the principle that localities affected would benefit and a percentage of revenue would go to counties,” Mr Wallace said in his letter.
He added: “The industry agreed figure of 1/3 of 1 per cent of revenue to counties is risible and risks delaying shale gas exploitation. It is also tiny compared to what the industry has to pay in the US and elsewhere.” [6]

In January 2014 Wallace described as ‘pathetic’ and ‘insulting’ the Coalition government's new fracking incentives for communities which would allow them to keep 100 per cent of business rates from extraction sites. [7]

Objects to Cuadrilla site

In January 2018, Wallace was one of two Conservative Lancashire MPs who objected to Cuadrilla’s revised plans for fracking at Roseacre Wood. His constituency includes the village of Inskip and the boundary is close to Roseacre and Elswick. [8]

Outside interests


Remunerated directorships

Oculus Insight Limited; investment consultancy in the security sector.

Overseas visits

28 July-1 August 2008, to Iran in my capacity as Chairman of the British-Iranian All-Party Parliamentary Group, for meetings with Iranian politicians and officials. Flights and accommodation were paid for by the Conservative Middle East Council. Some internal travel and hospitality was provided by the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran. (Registered 28 August 2008)

Registrable shareholdings

  • Oculus Insight Limited


Lobbying for North Sea oil company

From 18 February 2013 to 28 February 2014, Wallace gave 'assistance with public affairs advice' to Xcite Energy Resources Ltd (a North Sea oil exploration company), 1 Farnham Road, Guildford, GU2 4RG. The agreed remuneration was £30,000 a year and the expected time commitment was 15 hours a month. (£25,001 to £30,000). (Updated 2 March 2014) [9]

Overseas visits

Name of donor: (1) Ardeshir Nagashineh, Chairman of Targetfollow PLC; (2) the Majlis, the Parliament of the Islamic Republic of Iran (Iran-United Kingdom Parliamentary Friendship Group)
Address of donor: (1) TargetfollowGroup Ltd, Riverside House, 11/12 Riverside Road, Norwich, NR1 1SQ; (2) Baherestan Square, Tehran, Iran
Amount of donation (or estimate of the probable value): (1) £373.84 being the balance of the return flights from London to Tehran (via Frankfurt), Business Class, 6 and 10 January 2014.
Total cost £1,623.84 – the remainder being met by a non-registrable source. (2) 4 nights hotel accommodation in Tehran at estimated cost of £392.84, plus meals and transport for 4 days at estimated cost of £300.
Destination of visit: Tehran, Iran
Date of visit: 6-10 January 2014
Purpose of visit: visit by the All Party Parliamentary Group on Iran at the invitation of the Iran-UK Parliamentary Friendship Group of the Iranian Parliament. (Registered 26 February 2014) [10]




  1. Ben Wallace Express, accessed 13 May 2015
  2. Mr Ben Wallace,, accessed 24 August 2013.
  3. Ministerial appointments: July 2014, Prime Minister's Office, 15 July 2014.
  4. Top government role for Lancashire MP Lancashire Evening Press, 12 May 2015, accessed 13 May 2015
  5. Biography, Ben Wallace MP, accessed 31 October 2013.
  6. Peter Dominiczak and Lucy Fenn, Senior ministerial aide hits out at consequences of fracking, The Telegraph, 26 Aug 2013, 10:00PM BST, acc same day
  7. Isabelle Hardman, Fracking incentives ‘pathetic’ and ‘insulting’, Tory MP warns, The Spectator, 13 January 2014
  8. Ruth Hayhurst, Two Lancashire Tory MPs object to Cuadrilla’s revised plans for fracking at Roseacre Wood, DrillorDrop, 10 January 2018
  9. MP's Register of Interests,, 2 June 2014
  10. MP's Register of Interests,, 2 June 2014