Mel’s involvement in politics stems from his upbringing. His parents, due to economic hardship, left school at 15 and 14. Mel won a free place at a grammar school and Oxford University, where, as a keen debater, he was elected President of the Oxford Union. All this shaped his views on the importance of education - Mel has campaigned vigorously for fairer funding for Devon’s schools. Prior to his election Mel ran his own successful business for 20 years, expanding it from scratch. Mel has assisted thousands of constituents and holds an average of one advice surgery each week. He is one of the strongest supporters of business and farming in Parliament and worked with others to support the Mobile Homes Act providing protections for park home residents. As a ministerial aid Mel assisted the Government’s massive expansion of apprenticeships and helped steer the Energy Bill through Parliament. He is married to Michelle and the proud father of three daughters.