Michael Fabricant comments on his knighthood and a mysterious call he received last August while climbing a mountain in West Virginia……..
“I am indeed honoured to have been awarded a knighthood. I first learned about it officially just 24 hours before it was publicly announced. I finally heard about the announcement while I was in Zagreb with a rather dicey mobile connection. I have now returned.
“A former colleague from the House of Commons has told me I am the first Parliamentary knight for the Lichfield constituency since my predecessor Major General Sir Jack d’Avigdor-Goldsmid MP who inherited the baronetcy from his brother in December 1976, but I am the first to have been appointed a knight for services to Lichfield and Parliament. In those days, Sir Jack was MP for Lichfield and Tamworth.
“I hope to continue serving the people of the Lichfield and Burntwood constituency answering the many thousands of emails and letters I receive each year, helping with their problems and raising issues important to the constituency in Parliament.
“However, last August, I was away on holiday exploring West Virginia. I was nearing the summit of a mountain when I received a phone call from someone very senior in the Liz Truss campaign just days before it was publicly announced she had won the Conservative Leadership campaign.
“The caller told me he ‘didn’t want any by-elections’. I thought he was talking about someone else, but he said: ‘No. I mean you’. I asked why on earth would I cause a by-election and he told me I was on Boris’ peerage list.
“I was stunned. I said that I hadn’t asked or indicated in any way that I wanted to be put into the House of Lords as I enjoy serving in the House of Commons representing the Lichfield constituency. He said that if he can tell the PM that – Boris was still Prime Minister, I might be rewarded in some other way in the future. I then spoke to someone even more senior in her campaign and then more or less forgot about it all especially when Liz Truss had to resign as PM.
“Now, I really don’t know whether that peerage actually was on the cards as I never discussed it directly with Boris, but if it was, I am even more glad I didn’t insist on going to the House of Lords the way things have turned out; but, as I have said, I am delighted and grateful for the honour I have received. The knighthood is an honour for the whole constituency.”