Stephen McPartland, the MP for Stevenage, has rebelled against the government by voting against its proposed anti-strike legislation.

According to parliament's website, he was the only Conservative MP to vote against the bill during its second reading on Monday, January 16.

In a tweet earlier that day, he wrote: "I will vote against this shameful bill today. It does nothing to stop strikes - but individual NHS staff, teachers & workers can be targeted and sacked if they don't betray their mates.

"Fine the unions if they won't provide minimum service levels but don't sack individuals".


In contrast, the Twitter account for Stevenage Conservatives has retweeted several tweets that are supportive of the bill.

These include a speech by Grant Shapps, the business secretary and MP for Welwyn Hatfield, and the official Conservative party account, which criticised Labour MPs - who voted against the bill with McPartland - for siding "with the union bosses".

The vote on Monday saw the bill pass its second reading, with 310 MPs voting in favour and 249 voting against.

Bim Afolami, the MP for Hitchin & Harpenden, voted for the bill while Sir Oliver Heald, the MP for North East Hertfordshire, is not recorded as having voted.

The bill will become law if it passes its third reading. It would give the government the power to dictate minimum levels of service provision from workers in some sectors during strikes.

Some staff, including ambulance staff, firefighters and railway workers would be legally required to work during strikes, and could be sacked if they refuse to do so.