Chris Evans
Official portrait, 2017
Shadow Minister for Defence Procurement
Assumed office
14 May 2021
LeaderKeir Starmer
Preceded byKhalid Mahmood
Member of Parliament
for Islwyn
Assumed office
6 May 2010
Preceded byDon Touhig
Majority5,464 (15.9%)
Personal details
Christopher James Evans

(1977-07-17) 17 July 1977 (age 44)[1]
Llwynypia, Mid Glamorgan, Wales, UK[2]
Political partyLabour Co-op
Spouse(s)Julia Ockenden Edit this at Wikidata

Christopher James Evans (born 17 July 1977) is a Welsh Labour Co-operative politician serving as the Member of Parliament (MP) for Islwyn since 2010, and the Shadow Minister for Defence Procurement since 2021. Evans is a published author whose work includes a biography of former Leeds manager Don Revie[3] and boxer Freddie Mills.[4]

Early life

Chris Evans was brought up in the Rhondda valleys. He graduated with a history degree from Trinity College, Carmarthen.[5]

At the age of 13 he suffered a serious leg injury in a road traffic collision and underwent months of recovery: he later stated that the experience, on top of the stress caused by his parents' divorce, had caused him to develop body dysmorphic disorder.[6]

Before being elected to Parliament he worked as a bookmaker, in a bank and as a trade union official. He worked as a parliamentary researcher to then-Islwyn MP Don Touhig for four years.[7]

Parliamentary career

He was the Labour candidate for Cheltenham at the 2005 general election, but lost. However, at the 2010 general election he was elected MP for the safe Labour seat of Islwyn.[8]

His maiden speech focused on affordable lending and pay day loans.[9] Since being elected he has campaigned against fuel poverty[10][11][12] and in January 2011 led a Westminster Hall debate and spoke out against energy price rises. He is also a campaigner for the introduction of a Presumption of Death Act.[13]

He led a Westminster Hall debate on employment opportunities for people with inflammatory bowel disease.[14]

Evans was a member of the Justice Select Committee.[15] In July 2012, after two years as an MP, he was promoted to the Shadow Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs as Parliamentary Private Secretary to shadow Secretary of State Mary Creagh[16] Following a reshuffle in October 2013, Evans joined Labour's Shadow Treasury Team as Parliamentary Private Secretary to Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Chris Leslie.[17]

He supported Owen Smith in the failed attempt to replace Jeremy Corbyn in the 2016 Labour Party (UK) leadership election.[18]

In September 2020, Evans was appointed a vice-chair of Labour Friends of Israel.[19]

Evans was appointed as the Shadow Minister for Defence Procurement in the minor May 2021 reshuffle, filling the vacant position following Khalid Mahmood's resignation a month earlier.[20]

In March 2012, Evans introduced a ten-minute rule bill called 'The Banking Responsibility and Disclosure Bill' which aimed to tackle the growing problem of financial exclusion to ensure that banks are responsible for their actions. He has written several articles on this topic.[21]

In 2013, Evans launched a work experience program in Islwyn to help combat the problem of youth unemployment. Working alongside 200 local businesses, the scheme offers 6–8 week work placements for 18 to 24-year-olds out of work. The Islwyn Work Experience Programme is voluntary with applicants receiving additional help from Job Centre Plus to continue looking for permanent work.[22] It was launched alongside local businesses at a media event at the Crosskeys campus of Coleg Gwent.[23]

Dangerous dogs

On 19 January 2012, Evans said that he had been attacked by a dog which left a one-inch scar on his middle finger as he called on the government to take action against irresponsible dog owners.[24] Since then, he has been campaigning to promote responsible dog ownership.[25] In May 2012 he held a Westminster Hall debate on dangerous dog legislation and called on the government to introduce the compulsory microchipping of all dogs, recorded by a single national database.[26][needs update]

Personal life

In December 2013, Evans married Julia Ockenden, a former head of public affairs at the BBC.[27]


  1. ^ "Clause 6 - Postponement or disapplication of automatic enrolment". TheyWorkForYou.
  2. ^ "Chris Evans (profile)". Retrieved 19 April 2017.
  3. ^ . ISBN 1472973364 Missing or empty |title= (help)
  4. ^ . ISBN 1785312820 Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. ^ "Chris Evans biodataof". Retrieved 9 May 2015.
  6. ^ "MP Chris Evans on body dysmorphia: 'I didn't feel good enough'". BBC News. 4 February 2019.
  7. ^ "Chris Evans profile". London, UK: Archived from the original on 22 July 2012. Retrieved 15 April 2012.
  8. ^ "Christopher Evans: Electoral history and profile". Guardian. Manchester, UK.
  9. ^ Tiedemann, Martin (1 June 2010). "New Co-op MP calls for support for credit unions". The Cooperative Party. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 15 April 2012.
  10. ^ Westminster, Department of the Official Report (Hansard), House of Commons. "House of Commons Hansard Debates for 26 October 2011 (pt 0002)".
  11. ^ Westminster, Department of the Official Report (Hansard), House of Commons. "House of Commons Hansard Debates for 19 January 2011 (pt 0001)".
  12. ^ " | Breaking politics and political news for Westminster and the UK |". Retrieved 19 April 2017.
  13. ^ "Islwyn MP campaigns for Presumption of Death Act". Caerphilly Observer. 6 September 2011. Retrieved 15 April 2012.
  14. ^ "Westminster Hall debates: 31 January 2012". UK Parliament. 1 February 2012. Retrieved 15 April 2012.
  15. ^ "Chris Evans". UK Parliament. Retrieved 15 April 2012.
  16. ^ "Chris Evans :: Member of Parliament for Islwyn :: News". 13 July 2016. Retrieved 19 April 2017.
  17. ^ "Islwyn MP's new Shadow Treasury role". 5 November 2013. Archived from the original on 23 September 2015. Retrieved 7 January 2014.
  18. ^ "Full list of MPs and MEPs backing challenger Owen Smith". LabourList. 21 July 2016. Retrieved 15 July 2019.
  19. ^ Harpin, Lee (9 September 2020). "Labour Friends of Israel announces six new vice-chairs". The jewish Chronicle. Retrieved 9 September 2020.
  20. ^ Rodgers, Sienna. "Reshuffle: Keir Starmer's new Labour frontbench in full". LabourList. Retrieved 15 May 2021.
  21. ^ "Chris Evans MP: How the banks can tackle financial exclusion – The Co-operative Party". 22 March 2012. Retrieved 19 April 2017.
  22. ^ Islwyn Work Experience Programme,; accessed 9 May 2015.
  23. ^ "Islwyn | Wales - ITV News". 7 June 2013. Retrieved 19 April 2017.[dead link]
  24. ^ "Topical Questions — Environment, Food and Rural Affairs". They Work For You. 19 January 2012. Retrieved 15 April 2012.
  25. ^ "Why dangerous dog laws need to go further,; accessed 9 May 2015.
  26. ^ 23 May 2012 debates,; accessed 9 May 2015.
  27. ^ "Islwyn MP Chris Evans weds former BBC public relations chief Julia Ockenden at Our Lady & St Michael's church in Abergavenny". South Wales Argus. 23 December 2013. Retrieved 4 February 2019.
Parliament of the United Kingdom Preceded byDon Touhig Member of Parliament for Islwyn 2010–present Incumbent