|Member of the Welsh Assembly
6 May 1999 – 1 May 2003
|Preceded by||New Assembly|
|Succeeded by||Sandy Mewies|
8 May 1940 |
|Labour (until 2006)|
Alison Monica Halford (born 8 May 1940) is a former senior police officer who became a politician. She was Labour member of the National Assembly for Wales, representing the Delyn constituency, between 1999 and 2003. In 2006 she transferred allegiance to the Conservative Party and as of 2007 advises the Conservatives on home affairs.
Halford was born in Norwich. She attended a Roman Catholic grammar school and served for three years in the Women's Royal Air Force, before moving to London to train as a dental hygienist. She was not happy in her new job, however, and in 1962 joined the Metropolitan Police.
She rose rapidly in the police. She became a Detective Constable soon after completing her probation, joined a fast track promotion scheme, and was promoted to Inspector in 1967. She reached the rank of Chief Superintendent in the Metropolitan Police, and was the first woman in the country to command a police division, taking command of Tottenham Court Road police station.
In 1983, she became Assistant Chief Constable of Merseyside Police, the first woman to hold that rank in British police history and the first woman outside the Metropolitan Police to hold Chief Officer rank. She claimed to have faced sexual discrimination in her new post, however, and did not get on well with Chief Constable Kenneth Oxford. Despite repeated attempts she failed to win further promotion, after which she brought a sexual discrimination claim. The claim was withdrawn following a settlement between the two parties. She retired in 1992.
Halford then wrote a book about her experiences, entitled No Way Up the Greasy Pole.
On 10 April 2006 she announced that she was joining the Conservatives, having grown increasingly disillusioned with the Labour Party. She especially cited the appointment of Peter Mandelson as a European Commissioner. She is currently advising the Conservative Party and the Shadow Secretary of State for Wales on home affairs.
Alison Halford launched her book 'Leeks from the Backbenches' at the Welsh Assembly on 6 November 2007.
|National Assembly for Wales|
|Assembly Member for Delyn
1999 – 2003