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Last Updated: Wednesday, 21 April, 2004, 15:03 GMT 16:03 UK
22 April 2004
Question Time, the BBC's premier political programme chaired by David Dimbleby, will be in Manchester on 22 April. He will be joined for the interactive debate by Estelle Morris MP, Andrew Rosindell MP, David Laws MP, former Tory spin doctor and columnist Amanda Platell and Simply Red singer Mick Hucknall.

Arts Minister, Estelle Morris MP

Title: Arts Minister

Estelle Morris returned to government in 2003, a year after standing down from the position of education secretary.

The former teacher had faced severe problems over the marking of A-levels which were exacerbated when her department failed to meet literacy and numeracy targets on which she had staked her career.
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Ms Morris has a strong family background in politics as both her father and uncle served as Labour MPs. Before entering the Commons in 1992, she ran Warwick Council's Labour group for seven years.

Andrew Rosindell MP

Title: Conservative Party Vice-Chairman

At the 2001 general election Andrew Rosindell recorded the highest swing to the Conservatives in the country.

With a talent for attracting publicity, he became famous for campaigning with his bull terrier Spike, which he dressed in a union flag waistcoat.

The right-wing populist campaigner is in favour of hanging and firearm ownership. He is also against the euro and has said asylum seekers should be kept "under lock and key".

David Laws MP

Title: Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesman

David Laws was managing director at Barclays before his appointment as economic advisor for the Liberal Democrats in 1994.

For two years he held the position of director of policy and research and had a significant role in developing the party's 1997 manifesto and economic strategy.

Laws, who has a double first in economics from Cambridge wrote the party's alternative budgets in 1994 and 1995 and suceeded Paddy Ashdown in 2001 to become MP for Yeovil.

Amanda Platell

Title: Broadcaster and Journalist

Amanda Platell was William Hague's press secretary up to the 2001 general election during which she filmed a secret campaign video diary.

As William Hague's chief spin doctor she ran into trouble over an interview for GQ magazine in which he claimed to have drunk 14 pints of beer a day as a young man.

Born in Perth, Australia, Platell was once Alistair Campbell's boss at The Mirror before taking over the helm at the Sunday Express.

Mick Hucknall

Title: Singer, Simply Red

Simply Red star Mick Hucknall recently revealed his ambition to sit in the House of Lords.

The Labour supporter who has sold more than 40 million albums told Q magazine that it is unlikely he will be offered a peerage but believes the Lords should contain professionals as well as politicians.

Hucknall sits on a panel advising the government on music industry issues and in 2002 recommended that pub and restaurant licensing laws should be reformed to encourage more live music.

BBC One's Question Time is broadcast on Thursdays at 2235 GMT.


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