The House of Commons has Three Deputy Speakers elected to support The Speaker, the principal of these being the Chairman of Ways and Means.
The other two Deputy Speakers are known as the First Deputy Chairman of Ways and Means and the Second Deputy Chairman of Ways and Means. Once elected each of the three Deputies withdraw from an active political role.
Nigel was first elected as one of three Deputy Speakers of the House of Commons, and First Deputy Chairman of Ways and Means in 2010. This was the first time the Deputy Speakers were elected by the House of Commons in a secret ballot. Prior to this, Deputy Speakers had been appointed.
Following this, in 2020 Nigel was again elected as one of three Deputy Speakers of the House of Commons, and Second Deputy Chairman of Ways and Means in January 2020 and continues to fulfil this role.
The role of a Deputy Speaker is primarily to assist The Speaker in chairing debates in the Chamber. Like The Speaker they must be politically impartial, but are provided with special access to ministers to raise the issues of their constituents.
In order to maintain his impartiality in the Chair, Nigel does not take part in debates or vote. However, he is able to serve his constituents very effectively by requesting private meetings with Ministers. By convention, Ministers will hold a meeting with the Deputy Speaker at his request in order to ensure that the residents of the Ribble Valley are represented at the highest level of government.
Restoration and Renewal Programme Board (Chair):
Nigel is currently Chair of the Restoration and Renewal (R&R) Programme Board.
The R&R Programme Board, established in February 2023, has day to day oversight, and is responsible for making critical and strategic choices and recommendations, relating to the restoration and renewal of the Palace of Westminster to the R&R Client Board.
The R&R Programme Board is made up of members of both Houses'; the Clerk of the House of Commons and the Clerk of the House of Lords; and lay members. Nigel Chairs this new governance structure for the restoration and renewal of the Palace of Westminster.
Finance Committee (Member):
Nigel became a member of the Finance Committee in December 2022 and remains so.
The role of the Finance committee is to consider expenditure on services for the House of Commons, along with holding the responsibility of the preparation and detailed scrutiny of the House's budget.
Standing Orders Committee (Member):
Since April 2021 Nigel has been a member of the Standing Orders Committee.
The Standing Orders Committee, consisting of eleven MP, including each of the three Deputy Speakers consider matters relating to the rules for private and hybrid bills.
Panel of Chairs (Member):
Nigel is a member of the Panel of Chairs, who are members of the House of Commons responsible for chairing public bill committees and other General Committees, as well as debates in Westminster Hall.
Due to Nigel's position as Deputy Speaker he is no longer able to hold membership of Select Committees. However, prior to Nigel's election he was involved in the following Select Committees:
International Trade Select Committee:
Established in 2016, this committee oversees the operations of the Department for International Trade and its associated public bodies, and seeks to ensure that the actions of the department promote the UK's trade and prosperity after the UK withdraws from the EU single market.
International Development Select Committee:
The remit of the committee is to examine the expenditure, administration and policy of the Department for International Development and its associated public bodies, and scrutinise whether the UK's aid budget is spent in an efficient and productive way.
British Group Inter-Parliamentary Union:
Nigel was on the Executive Committee of the BGIPU, an organisation which seeks to promote and consolidate Britain's interests abroad and engage parliamentarians in key global issues, and advance the role that parliamentarians can play in international affairs.
Commonwealth Parliamentary Association UK Branch:
Nigel was on the executive committee of the CPA, an organisation with a specific focus on parliamentary diplomacy and democracy strengthening activities between commonwealth countries.
Council Of Europe:
Nigel was a member of the Council of Europe, with responsibilities such as being the rapporteur on Turkey, which included observing the recent referendum in the country.
Whilst Nigel no longer holds these positions, he continues to follow and support the work of each of these organisations, maintaining his interest and commitment to international affairs.
All Party Parliamentary Groups (APPG's):
All-Party Parliamentary Groups (APPGs) are informal cross-party groups that whilst having no official status can help to promote and spread awareness of the relevant issue within Parliament. They are run by and for Members of the Commons and Lords.
Nigel has been active in numerous APPGs in the past, holding the position of Chair or Vice Chair in several groups. Whilst his position as Deputy Speaker means he is no longer able to be such an active member of APPGs, Nigel maintains an interest and closely follows and supports the work of many APPGs, through holding the role of Honorary President/Vice President:
Taiwan (Honorary President):
Nigel Previously Chaired this Group, and now serves as their Honorary President.
The British Taiwanese All-Party Parliamentary Group was founded in 1976 and has since become one of the largest parliamentary groups of its kind. Its purpose is to facilitate the bilateral relations of the United Kingdom and Taiwan, which includes the promotion of trade, mutual understanding and cultural associations between the two countries.
Beer APPG (Honorary President):
The purpose of the Beer APPG is to promote the wholesomeness and enjoyment of beer and the unique role of the pub in UK society; to increase understanding of the social, cultural and historic role of brewing and pubs in the UK and their value to tourism; to broaden recognition of the contribution of brewing and pubs to employment and to the UK's economy; to promote understanding of the social responsibility exercised by the brewing and pub industries; to support the UK's brewing industry worldwide.
Bahrain (Honorary President):
The purpose of the APPG for Bahrain is to foster good relationships between the UK and Bahrain. The group aims to develop friendship and understanding between our countries and promote mutual economic and political aims.
Morocco (Honorary President):
The role of the APPG for Morocco is to promote links and mutual understanding between Britain and Morocco, promoting good relations between the two countries.
In addition to these groups, Nigel continues to holds honorary positions on the All Party Parliamentary Groups for Music, Qatar, Lebanon, Gibraltar and Belize.