Nigel Huddleston becomes charities minister, over three weeks after reshuffle began  

11 Oct 2021 News

Nigel Huddleston

Nigel Huddleston has become the minister for civil society and youth, in addition to being minister for sport and tourism, nearly a month after the reshuffle process began. 

Some time on Friday 8 October the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport updated its website to explain what each of its ministers are now responsible for. 

Prior to the confirmation he is reported to have attended charity events at the Conservative Party Conference, where he indicated that he expected to take on the role. 

Huddleston is a parliamentary under secretary, similar to previous holders of the minister for civil society title. Unlike the previous minister, who was an unpaid member of the House of Lords, he needs to combine the civil society brief with other big topic areas.

DCMS confirmed that the civil society brief continues to include social enterprise and loneliness policy.

There is often a delay between the prime minister appointing individuals to departments and the secretary of state dividing up portfolio responsibilities, but it normally happens within a day or two, not weeks. 

Boris Johnson reshuffled his top team in mid-September, appointing Nadine Dorries as the new culture secretary, making her the person who oversees the minister for civil society. 

Baroness Barran, who had been minister for civil society, was moved to the Department for Education early in the process. 

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport did not have a full team until 30 September when Lord Parkinson joined the department. 

About Nigel Huddleston 

Huddleston has been the MP for Mid Worcestershire since May 2015. 

Before entering politics he was a management consultant and worked for Deloitte on technology, media, telecommunications, hospitality and travel. 

When he entered parliament he joined the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee. 

He joined DCMS in a junior role in 2017, and later held roles as an assistant government whip and vice-chair of the Conservative Party. 

Huddleston rejoined DCMS as a minister in February 2020. In this role he has also handled questions related to charity issues in the House of Commons on behalf of the department. 

'Volunteers have been truly heroic' 

On his first full day in the job, DCMS and the National Lottery Community Fund (NLCF) published an analysis of how the £200m Coronavirus Community Support Fund was spent

This concludes that the funding reached 6.5 million people. Grantholders are also estimated to have mobilised 136,000 existing volunteers and over 47,000 new volunteers, due to the extra funds. 

The government also says that the funding helped to prevent charity closures, with one-fifth of recipients saying they would have been forced to close their doors without the funding and half said that they would have delivered significantly fewer services without the funding.

The report also estimates that the funding meant over 6,200 employees were brought back from furlough, or prevented from being furloughed, and over 4,200 new staff members were recruited. 

Huddleston said: “I’m immensely grateful for the volunteers and charity staff who have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic. They have been truly heroic, and the backbone of our communities. Today’s results demonstrate the significant role the Coronavirus Community Support Fund has  played in towns and cities across the country. As part of our wider £750m of direct support for charities during the pandemic, this government funding meant organisations could continue their vital work helping more than six million people in need.”

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