By Tim Montgomerie
"That this House recalls with deep sorrow, this week 20 years ago, the cowardly murder of Ian Gow, the then hon. Member for Eastbourne, a former Minister of The Crown and Parliamentary Private Secretary to the then Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher, when, in the early hours of 30 July 1990, a device planted by the Provisional IRA exploded beneath his car at the family home in Hankham, East Sussex, cruelly depriving the House of Commons of a man of integrity and one of its most principled, caring and generous parliamentarians, and the United Kingdom of a genuinely courageous politician, who was fearless in his defence of the nation; and resolves this day, to honour the memory of Ian Gow and to strive to uphold the love of country that this truly honourable Member dedicated his life to serving."
The following MPs have signed the EDM from all parties:
- Sir Stuart Bell
- Stephen Lloyd (the new LibDem MP for Ian Gow's old seat of Eastbourne)
- The Rt. Hon. Peter Lilley
- Sammy Wilson
- John Whittingdale O.B.E.
- Bob Russell
- Dr. Julian Lewis
- Peter Bottomley
- Simon Hughes
- Graham Brady
- James Gray
A wonderful initiative that, like Andrew's campaign for three Union flags to be flown over Parliament, deserves to succeed.
The text of Andrew's full 'Dear Colleague' letter from 30th July is pasted below:
It is twenty years ago today, that our friend and colleague, Ian Gow, was cruelly murdered by the Provisional I.R.A.
Many of us remember that day with great sorrow.
Ian’s assassination was a horrific crime against a man of enormous integrity who was never afraid to stand firm for what he truly believed to be right.
His loss deprived the House of one of its finest parliamentarians and Ian paid the ultimate sacrifice for being true to his principles.
The late Ian Gow T.D. M.P. served as a Member of Parliament from 1974-1990, representing the Eastbourne constituency, having previously served in Her Majesty’s Armed Forces in Northern Ireland, Germany and Malaya. He was Parliamentary Private Secretary to Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher from 1979 to 1983, after which he became a Minister of the Crown until 1985. He later became Chairman of the Conservative Backbench Northern Ireland Committee.
On the 30th July 1990, an explosive device was placed under his car parked outside his family home in Hankham, East Sussex. He tragically died that day.
Earlier this week, I spoke on the floor of the House of Commons, to request that Mr. Speaker give consideration to allowing a permanent memorial in the House, in tribute to Ian Gow.
A shield already exists in the chamber of the House of Commons, above the main door in memory of the late Airey Neave, who died in similar circumstances to that of Ian, having also been targeted by terrorists. Similar recognition for Ian would I believe, be an appropriate tribute.
Ian’s widow, Dame Jane Whiteley, has stated that she would be “delighted and very proud” if this idea were to become a reality.
I wondered if you would be kind enough to indicate whether you would be willing to add your name in support of this idea?
A simple e-mail from you or a note to me via my office in reply, would be most welcome.
Thank you for taking the time to read this message.
With kind regards.
Andrew Rosindell M.P.
Member of Parliament for Romford"