Adam Holloway

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Person.png Adam Holloway   WebsiteRdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
(politician, officer, spook)
Adam Holloway.png
Faversham, Kent, England
Alma materCranleigh School, Magdalene College (Cambridge), Imperial College London, Royal Military Academy Sandhurst
Member ofHome Affairs Select Committee
UK military intelligence officer and Conservative politician

Adam James Harold Holloway is a British Conservative Party military intelligence officer and politician. He has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for Gravesham since 2005.[1] He currently serves as Assistant Whip, and has previously served on the Home Affairs Select Committee and as a member of the Defence Select Committee, and Science and Technology Select Committee. He also served for a time as Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Middle East Council. He has been a vocal supporter of pro-Brexit lobby group Leave Means Leave.[2]

Military intelligence

Holloway was born in Faversham, Kent, the son of the Revd Roger Holloway OBE (died 2010). He was privately educated at Cranleigh School. He then spent his gap year with the Afghan Mujahedin, during the Soviet-Afghan War,[3].

He then went to Magdalene College, Cambridge, where he studied social and political sciences. He completed an MBA at Imperial College London.[3] He spent his University holidays visiting and working in Pakistan, Soweto and Nicaragua[3], presumably working for the intelligence services under cover.

After graduating from university, Holloway attended the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst, from which he was commissioned into the British Army's Grenadier Guards in 1987. During his five-year military career, he saw service with the British Army on the Rhine as an Armoured Infantry platoon officer, and as a captain in Iraq during the Persian Gulf War.[4]

According to Frederick Forsyth, he served in the SAS during the First Gulf War, taking part in the operation to sabotage missiles in Iraq's western desert.[5]

Career in journalism

After (officially) resigning from the Army in 1991 with the rank of captain, Holloway worked as an investigative journalist and reporter with ITN and ITV, where he specialized in making series undercover, pretending to be a homeless person, refugee, and others.[3]

Parliamentary career

Holloway was elected in the 2005 general election]to represent the Kent constituency of Gravesham, defeating a former Labour minister, Chris Pond, by just 654 votes.

Holloway was a member of the Defence Select Committee from 2006 to 2010, and then again from November 2012 to November 2014.[6] He also served for a time as Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Middle East Council. In Parliament, he has additionally been a member of the Science and Technology Committee, the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee, the Foreign Affairs Committee and the Public Administration Committee[7]

In a 2009 report written by Holloway, he described how some of the claims about Iraq having weapons of mass destruction, used to support the UK government's case for war in 2003, originated from an Iraqi taxi driver. Particularly the claim about their ability to be "ready to launch in 45 minutes," which was one of the "central planks" of the government's case.[8][9] According to Holloway, the unreliability of some sources was not expressed by MI6 while preparing the case for war because of pressure from Downing Street.[8]

In October 2010 he was appointed as Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS) to David Lidington, Minister of State for Europe and NATO in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.[10] In October 2011, he resigned this post when he was asked to vote against a non-binding Backbench Motion offering the British people a referendum on Europe.[11][12] When speaking about his decision he said: "I'm not now prepared to go back on my words to my constituents and I'm really staggered that loyal people like me have actually been put in this position," considering that he had "never voted against the party line."[13] For this decision he received 'Backbencher of the Year' in The Spectator Parliamentarian of the Year Awards in 2011 as an MP who "in a choice between career and principle, chose principle."[14]

While in Parliament, Holloway has taken a close interest in the War in Afghanistan and has visited, at his own expense, about a dozen times. In 2009 he wrote a paper for the Centre for Policy Studies titled "In Blood Stepp'd in too Far" which outlined the policies that he thought should be implemented during the War in Afghanistan: establishing an "honest government," ensuring that "tribal structures are supported, and "maintaining low levels of allied troops."[15]

Holloway has also spent time in Iraq at the frontline with the Islamic State, and on his own has visited Mosul. In October 2014 he was one of just six Conservative MPs to vote against air strikes targeting Islamic State in Iraq.[16][17] He argued the campaign hadn't "been thought through".[18] He actively abstained in the vote for air strikes in Syria in November 2015.[19]

In a September 2015 Parliamentary speech Holloway described giving asylum to refugees from the Middle East as "bonkers", stating than many asylum seekers go on holiday in the countries they had fled from and used his barber as an example.[20] His barber, a Kurdish refugee, subsequently stated that he was holidaying in Great Yarmouth that week, not Iraq.[21]

Holloway publicly supported the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union in the 2016 United Kingdom European Union membership referendum.[22] He was also one of the 'Tory rebels' who voted to keep no-deal on the table. Holloway also was one of the very first to write a letter of no-confidence in Theresa May's leadership during her Brexit negotiations[23] and was one of the 28 so-called 'Brexit Spartans' who voted against her deal when it was presented for a third time in March 2019.[24]

In 2020, he was appointed Parliamentary Private Secretary to Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government Secretary of State Robert Jenrick.[25]

In July 2021, Holloway was one of five Conservative MPs found by the Commons Select Committee on Standards to have breached the code of conduct by writing to the Lord Chief Justice to try to influence a judge not to release character statements they had written for former Conservative MP Charlie Elphicke, who had previously been found guilty of three counts of sexual assault and sentenced to two years in prison.[26]

In February 2022, Holloway visited Ukraine following the Russian invasion of the country. Holloway said the trip would improve his ability to represent constituents and he intended to stay in the country for a few days.[27]

In April 2022, it was revealed that Holloway provided a character statement which was used as part of the defence case in the trial of former Conservative MP Imran Ahmad Khan, who was found guilty of sexually assaulting a 15-year-old boy.[28]


  3. a b c d
  5. PATHETIC ARMCHAIR GENERALS SHAME US, Frederick Forsyth, 14 May 2010.
  8. a b
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