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Benefits reformer Freud promoted

The architect of the Government's welfare reforms has been promoted as David Cameron made more appointments to his first Conservative-only administration.

Lord Freud, who recommended wide-ranging reforms to the benefits system in a 2007 and was later recruited to government to push through his ideas, moves up from a junior ministerial post in the Department of Work and Pensions to minister of state rank under Secretary of State Iain Duncan Smith.

Other appointments included hereditary peer Earl Howe, who is made deputy leader of the Lords and moves from the Department of Health to the Ministry of Defence.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon moves from the Communities Department to a post shared between the Home Office and Department for Transport, while Baroness Verma transfers from a junior ministerial role at Energy to a similar post in the Department for International Development.

Academy schools sponsor Lord Nash remains at the Department for Education, while former council leader Baroness Williams of Trafford joins the ministerial team at the Department for Communities and Local Government.

Lord Taylor of Holbeach is made Lords Chief Whip and Lord Gardiner of Kimble his deputy.

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