MP Lucy Frazer under fire after using maiden speech to describe how Cromwell defeated the Scots and sent them as “slaves to the colonies”

Lucy Frazer

Lucy Frazer - Credit: Archant

MP Lucy Frazer has apologised through a Scottish newspaper after using her maiden speech in the House of Commons to describe how Oliver Cromwell defeated the Scots at Dunbar and sent them as “slaves to the colonies”.

Ms Frazer, the newly elected member for SE Cambs, has come under fire since Thursday’s speech with angry comments posted to her Facebook page.

An on line petition has begun to the Speaker of the House of Commons calling for him to “immediately direct Lucy Frazer and the other MPs present who were laughing to make a full and public apology in the commons to the people of Scotland”.

The Sunday Herald in Glasgow today quotes Ms Frazer as saying that she is “extremely sorry for any offence I have caused. That was not my intention. I have the highest regard for Scotland and the Scottish people”.

Ms Frazer used her maiden speech to, firstly, as is the tradition, congratulate her predecessor Sir Jim Paice whom she described as an “honourable, loyal and principled man”.

But it was her later comments, when she described her constituency as being the home of Oliver Cromwell, that have landed her in hot water with the Scots.

She reminded MPs it was Cromwell “who defeated the Scots at Dunbar, incorporated Scotland into his protectorate and transported the Scots as slaves to the colonies.

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“Now, there is an answer to the West Lothian question—but not one, of course that I would recommend.”

Some 5,000 people have now signed an ‘open letter’ begun by Martin Keatings, a political activist from Scotland, in which he accuses the MP of making “offensive and pejorative statements about a member constituent country of the UK”.

He wants the Speaker to “direct Lucy Frazer to make a full and unreserved apology to the elected representatives of Scotland in the House and live on TV to the general population of the people of Scotland.

“If she refuses to do so then she must be suspended from the House by the Speaker and the master at arms directed to remove her from the chamber until such time she is willing to make said apology.”

Dozens have been posting comments to the MP’s Facebook page including Ken Povey who told her that “if your maiden speech is indicative of ‘the charm and friendliness of the people of South East Cambridgeshire’ then I for one will make sure to never set foot within its parliamentary boundaries.”

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