Richhill man appointed special adviser to Secretary of State

Peter Cardwell on Good Morning Britian with Susanna Reid and Ben Shephard.
Peter Cardwell on Good Morning Britian with Susanna Reid and Ben Shephard.

Richhill man and former Good Morning Britain journalist Peter Cardwell is understood to have been appointed as a special adviser (spad) to Northern Ireland Secretary of State James Brokenshire.

Mr Cardwell, a former Portadown College pupil, is believed to have taken up the post this week.

He will work alongside long-term Conservative Party special advisor Jonathan Caine, who advised former secretaries of state Theresa Villiers and Owen Paterson.

Mr Cardwell started his career at the BBC and worked for Newsnight in London, before becoming a reporter for Radio Ulster’s Nolan Show.

After working on the General Election debates in 2010, he moved to UTV and then broke onto television screens nationwide with a posting on Good Morning Britain.

The son of retired Tandragee PS principal Ken Cardwell and his wife Sandra, he won a place at Oxford University to read history and politics and then studied journalism at Columbia University in New York.

Mr Cardwell chairs the Philip Geddes Memorial Fund, which awards annual prizes for student journalism at Oxford.

He will work in a supporting role to Mr Brokenshire, who was appointed to the position of Secretary of State in July.

The Downing Street press office said it was unable to confirm anything at this stage but that a full list of special advisers would be published in due course.

Meanwhile, Mr Brokenshire was in Portadown this week as part of a series of visits across Northern Ireland.

He visited Thompson Aero Seating in Seagoe Industrial Estate where he was given a tour of the factory and met staff including senior management team members Colin Adamson, Gary Montgomery and Andy Morris.

James Brokenshire was appointed Secretary of State for Northern Ireland on July 14, and was appointed by the Prime Minister Theresa May after she took over from David Cameron.

This month he has been meeting local businesses, civic groups and political leaders as part of the government’s efforts to ensure Northern Ireland’s voice is heard in forthcoming EU negotiations.