New MP on the butchers of Ogmore - and Kylie Minogue
Wales's newest MP has made his House of Commons debut. Labour MP Chris Elmore, who won the Ogmore by-election on May 5, delivered his maiden speech during a debate on the Queen's Speech.
As is traditional, Mr Elmore used his maiden speech to say nice things about his predecessors and his constituency. Unusually, his immediate predecessor, Huw Irranca-Davies, still represents the same constituents - in the National Assembly for Wales.
He also reflected on Mr Irranca-Davies's predecessor, Sir Ray Powell. "Many longer-serving members have been keen to keen to share stories of Sir Raymond's skills during his time in the whips' office," said Mr Elmore, who revealed they had something in common.
"We are in fact both trained in butchery; Sir Raymond a master butcher and me a butchery assistant. I'm not sure if my skills with a knife will ever come to use in this house but I'm told by members it's a useful skill to have, I of course assume metaphorically."
Parachutes can be as useful as butchers' knives to a politician - and they make them (and ejector seats) at Llangeinor in the constituency.
There were plenty of musical references, from "the cultural capital of Maesteg - the ancestral home of none other than Kylie Minogue" to Blaengarw, where Calon Lan is said to have been written.
Although the speech was humorous and personal, in keeping with tradition, it also included a promise to keep the government under pressure over the future of the steel industry.
Also in keeping with tradition, the speech was praised by his political opponents. The former Tory chief whip Andrew Mitchell described it as "a truly exceptional maiden speech".
He added: "Many of us remember his distinguished predecessor, Sir Raymond. Indeed, I served in what was the government's whips' opposite Sir Raymond and I can indeed confirm that he was a distinguished butcher."