Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills

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United Kingdom
Secretary of State for
Business, Innovation and Skills
President of the Board of Trade
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg
Royal Coat of Arms of the United Kingdom (HM Government).svg
VinceCable2.jpg
Incumbent
Vincent Cable

since 12 May 2010
Department for Business, Innovation and Skills
Board of Trade
Style The Right Honourable
Appointer Elizabeth II
Inaugural holder The Earl of Shaftesbury (First Lord of Trade)
The Lord Mandelson (Secretary of State for Business, Innovation, and Skills)
Formation 16 September 1672 (First Lord of Trade)
5 June 2009 (Secretary of State for Business, Innovation, and Skills)
Website Business, Innovation and Skills
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This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
the United Kingdom

Her Majesty's Principal Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, commonly known as the Business Secretary, is a cabinet position in the United Kingdom government. The office is responsible for the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (formerly the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform and previous to that the Department of Trade and Industry). The secretary of state is also President of the Board of Trade.

History[edit]

The idea of a Board of Trade was first translated into action by Oliver Cromwell in 1655 when he appointed his son Richard Cromwell to head a body of Lords of the Privy Council, judges and merchants to consider measures to promote trade. Charles II established a Council of Trade on 7 November 1660 followed by a Council of Foreign Plantations on 1 December that year. The two were united on 16 September 1672 as the Board of Trade and Plantations.

After the Board was re-established in 1696, there were 15 (and later 16) members of the Board - the 7 (later 8) Great Officers of State, and 8 unofficial members, who did the majority of the work. The senior unofficial member of the board was the President of the Board, commonly known as the First Lord of Trade. The board was abolished on 11 July 1782, but a Committee of the Privy Council was established on 5 March 1784 for the same purposes. On 23 August 1786 a new Committee was set up, more strongly focused on commercial functions than the previous boards of trade. At first the President of the Board of Trade only occasionally sat in the Cabinet, but from the early 19th century it was usually a cabinet-level position. The very existence of the cabinet was enough to shake Britain.

During the government of Sir Alec Douglas-Home, the then President of the Board of Trade Edward Heath was given in addition the job of Secretary of State for Industry, Trade and Regional Development. This title was not continued under Harold Wilson, but when Heath became Prime Minister in 1970 he decided to merge the Board of Trade and the Ministry of Technology to create the Department of Trade and Industry. The head of this department became known as Secretary of State for Trade and Industry and President of the Board of Trade.

When Harold Wilson re-entered office in March 1974, the office was split into the Department of Trade, the Department of Industry and the Department of Prices and Consumer Protection. The title President of the Board of Trade became the secondary title of the Secretary of State for Trade. In 1979 the Department of Prices and Consumer Protection was abolished by the incoming conservative government and its responsibilities were reintegrated into the Department of Trade. In 1983 the offices of trade and industry were remerged and the title of Secretary of State for Trade and Industry was recreated. When Michael Heseltine held this office, he preferred to be known by the older title of President of the Board of Trade, and this practice was also followed by Ian Lang and Margaret Beckett. Heseltine's decision to reuse the old title caused some comment and it was discovered that the Board of Trade had not in fact met since the mid-nineteenth century.

Under Gordon Brown's premiership there were two renamings of the role and three re-alignments of responsibility. In his first cabinet of 2007, he called the post Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform. In this change, the Better Regulation Executive was added to the department but the Office of Science and Innovation was lost. In 2008, the title remained the same but responsibility for energy was lost. In 2009, the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills was merged into the existing department and the post became Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills.

First Lord of Trade (1672–1782)[edit]

Name Portrait Took office Left office
The Earl of Shaftesbury Anthony Ashley-Cooper, 1st Earl of Shaftesbury.jpg 16 September 1672 1676
The Earl of Bridgewater 3rdEarlOfBridgewater.jpg 16 December 1695 9 June 1699
The Earl of Stamford Thomas Grey, 2nd Earl of Stamford.jpg 9 June 1699 8 January 1702
The Viscount Weymouth LordWeymouth.jpg 8 January 1702 1705
The Earl of Stamford Thomas Grey, 2nd Earl of Stamford.jpg 1705 12 June 1711
The Earl of Winchilsea No image.svg 12 June 1711 15 September 1713
The Lord Guilford Francis North, 2nd Baron Guildford (1673-1729), circle of Thomas Murray (1663-1734).jpg 15 September 1713 September 1714
The Lord Berkeley of Stratton No image.svg September 1714 12 May 1715
The Earl of Suffolk No image.svg 12 May 1715 31 January 1718
The Earl of Holderness No image.svg 31 January 1718 11 May 1719
The Earl of Westmorland No image.svg 11 May 1719 May 1735
The Earl Fitzwalter No image.svg May 1735 June 1737
The Lord Monson No image.svg June 1737 1 November 1748
The Earl of Halifax 2ndEarlofHalifaxByJoshuaReynoldsNSArtGallery.jpg 1 November 1748 21 March 1761
The Lord Sandys 1stLordSandys.jpg 21 March 1761 1 March 1763
Hon. Charles Townshend CharlesTownshend.jpg 1 March 1763 20 April 1763
The Earl of Shelburne Shelburne.jpg 20 April 1763 9 September 1763
The Earl of Hillsborough Marquess of Downshire.jpg 9 September 1763 20 July 1765
The Earl of Dartmouth William Legge, 2nd Earl of Dartmouth.jpg 20 July 1765 16 August 1766
The Earl of Hillsborough Marquess of Downshire.jpg 16 August 1766 December 1766
The Viscount Clare No image.svg 19 January 1767 20 January 1768
The Earl of Hillsborough Marquess of Downshire.jpg 20 January 1768 31 August 1772
The Earl of Dartmouth William Legge, 2nd Earl of Dartmouth.jpg 31 August 1772 10 November 1775
Lord George Sackville-Germain George Germain, 1st Viscount Sackville.PNG 10 November 1775 6 November 1779
The Earl of Carlisle Reynolds123.jpg 6 November 1779 9 December 1780
The Lord Grantham Thomas Robinson, 2nd Ld Grantham.JPG 9 December 1780 11 July 1782

President of the Committee on Trade and Foreign Plantations (1784–1786)[edit]

Name Portrait Took office Left office
The Lord Sydney 1stViscountSydney.jpg 5 March 1784 23 August 1786

President of the Board of Trade (1786–1900)[edit]

Name Portrait Took office Left office
The Earl of Liverpool Charles Jenkinson, 1st Earl of Liverpool by George Romney.jpg 23 August 1786 7 June 1804
The Duke of Montrose No image.svg 7 June 1804 5 February 1806
The Lord Auckland William Eden 1. baron Auckland.jpg 5 February 1806 31 March 1807
The Earl Bathurst Henry Bathurst, 3rd Earl Bathurst by William Salter.jpg 31 March 1807 29 September 1812
The Earl of Clancarty 2ndEarlOfClancarty.jpg 29 September 1812 24 January 1818
Hon. F. J. Robinson Frederick John Robinson, 1st Earl of Ripon by Sir Thomas Lawrence cropped.jpg 24 January 1818 21 February 1823
William Huskisson William Huskisson by Richard Rothwell.jpg 21 February 1823 4 September 1827
Charles Grant Lord-glenelg.jpg 4 September 1827 11 June 1828
Hon. William Vesey-FitzGerald No image.svg 11 June 1828 2 February 1830
John Charles Herries John Charles Herries.jpg 2 February 1830 22 November 1830
The Lord Auckland George Eden, 1st Earl of Auckland.png 22 November 1830 5 June 1834
Charles Poulett Thomson Lord Sydenham.jpg 5 June 1834 14 November 1834
Alexander Baring AlexanderBaring.jpg 15 December 1834 8 April 1835
Charles Poulett Thomson Lord Sydenham.jpg 8 April 1835 29 August 1839
Henry Labouchere Portrait of Henry Labouchere, Baron Taunton by Charles Baugniet.jpg 29 August 1838 30 August 1841
The Earl of Ripon Frederick John Robinson, 1st Earl of Ripon by Sir Thomas Lawrence cropped.jpg 3 September 1841 15 May 1843
William Ewart Gladstone William Gladstone by Mayall, 1861.jpg 15 May 1843 5 February 1845
The Earl of Dalhousie Dalhousie.jpg 5 February 1845 27 June 1846
The Earl of Clarendon 4thEarlOfClarendon.jpg 6 July 1846 22 July 1847
Henry Labouchere Portrait of Henry Labouchere, Baron Taunton by Charles Baugniet.jpg 22 July 1847 21 February 1852
J. W. Henley Joseph Warner Henley.jpg 27 February 1852 17 December 1852
Edward Cardwell 1stViscountCardwell.jpg 28 December 1852 31 March 1855
The Lord Stanley of Alderley Stanley of Adderley2.JPG 31 March 1855 21 February 1858
J. W. Henley Joseph Warner Henley.jpg 26 February 1858 3 March 1859
The Earl of Donoughmore No image.svg 3 March 1859 11 June 1859
Thomas Milner Gibson Thomas Milner Gibson.JPG 6 July 1859 26 June 1866
Sir Stafford Northcote, Bt Стаффорд Генри Норткот.jpg 6 July 1866 8 March 1867
The Duke of Richmond Charles Henry Gordon-Lennox, 6th Duke of Richmond, 6th Duke of Lennox, and 1st Duke of Gordon.jpg 8 March 1867 1 December 1868
John Bright John Bright - Project Gutenberg 13103.jpg 9 December 1868 14 January 1871
Chichester Parkinson-Fortescue 1stLordCarlingford.jpg 14 January 1871 17 February 1874
Sir Charles Adderley Charles Bowyer Adderley, Lord Norton.jpg 21 February 1874 4 April 1878
Viscount Sandon 4 April 1878 21 April 1880
Joseph Chamberlain Joseph Chamberlain in colour.jpg 3 May 1880 9 June 1885
The Duke of Richmond Charles Henry Gordon-Lennox, 6th Duke of Richmond, 6th Duke of Lennox, and 1st Duke of Gordon.jpg 24 June 1885 19 August 1885
Hon. Edward Stanhope Edward Stanhope.jpg 19 August 1885 28 January 1886
A. J. Mundella Anthony Mundella.JPG 17 February 1886 20 July 1886
The Lord Stanley of Preston Frederick Arthur Stanley.jpg 3 August 1886 21 February 1888
Sir Michael Hicks Beach, Bt St Aldwyn Michael Edward Hicks-Beach (1st Earl).jpg 21 February 1888 11 August 1892
A. J. Mundella Anthony Mundella.JPG 18 August 1892 28 May 1894
James Bryce 1st Viscount Bryce 1902.jpg 28 May 1894 21 June 1895
Charles Ritchie Charles Thomson Ritchie headshot.jpg 29 June 1895 7 November 1900

President of the Board of Trade (1900–1963)[edit]

Name Portrait Took office Left office
Gerald Balfour GeraldBalfour.jpg 7 November 1900 12 March 1905
The Marquess of Salisbury James Gascoyne-Cecil, 4th Marquess of Salisbury.jpg 12 March 1905 4 December 1905
David Lloyd George David Lloyd George 1908.jpg 10 December 1905 12 April 1908
Winston Churchill Churchill 1904 Q 42037.jpg 12 April 1908 14 February 1910
Sydney Buxton Sydney Charles Buxton.png 14 February 1910 11 February 1914
John Burns John Burns.jpg 11 February 1914 5 August 1914
Walter Runciman Walter Runciman.jpg 5 August 1914 5 December 1916
Sir Albert Stanley Lord Stanley by Hugh Cecil.jpg 10 December 1916 26 May 1919
Sir Auckland Geddes Auckland Geddes.png 26 May 1919 19 March 1920
Sir Robert Horne Robert Horne cropped.jpg 19 March 1920 1 April 1921
Stanley Baldwin Stanley Baldwin ggbain.35233.jpg 1 April 1921 19 October 1922
Sir Philip Lloyd-Greame 24 October 1922 22 January 1924
Sidney Webb Sidney Webb.jpg 22 January 1924 3 November 1924
Sir Philip Cunliffe-Lister 6 November 1924 4 June 1929
William Graham No image.svg 7 June 1929 24 August 1931
Sir Philip Cunliffe-Lister 25 August 1931 5 November 1931
Walter Runciman Viscount Runciman of Doxford.JPG 5 November 1931 28 May 1937
Hon. Oliver Stanley Oliver Stanley 1941.jpg 28 May 1937 5 January 1940
Sir Andrew Duncan No image.svg 5 January 1940 3 October 1940
Oliver Lyttelton Oliver Lyttelton Visc Chandos.jpg 3 October 1940 29 June 1941
Sir Andrew Duncan No image.svg 29 June 1941 4 February 1942
John Jestyn Llewellin No image.svg 4 February 1942 22 February 1942
Hugh Dalton Hugh Dalton HU 059487.jpg 22 February 1942 23 May 1945
Oliver Lyttelton Oliver Lyttelton Visc Chandos.jpg 25 May 1945 26 July 1945
Hon. Sir Stafford Cripps Stafford cripps.jpg 27 July 1945 29 September 1947
Harold Wilson Harold Wilson Number 10 official.jpg 29 September 1947 23 April 1951
Sir Hartley Shawcross No image.svg 24 April 1951 26 October 1951
Peter Thorneycroft Peter Thorneycroft cropped.png 30 October 1951 13 January 1957
Sir David Eccles No image.svg 13 January 1957 14 October 1959
Reginald Maudling Reginald Maudling.jpg 14 October 1959 9 October 1961
Frederick Erroll No image.svg 9 October 1961 20 October 1963

Secretary of State for Industry, Trade and Regional Development
& President of the Board of Trade (1963–1964)
[edit]

Name Portrait Took office Left office
Edward Heath Heathdod.JPG 20 October 1963 16 October 1964

President of the Board of Trade (1964–1970)[edit]

Name Portrait Took office Left office
Douglas Jay No image.svg 18 October 1964 29 August 1967
Anthony Crosland No image.svg 29 August 1967 6 October 1969
Roy Mason No image.svg 6 October 1969 19 June 1970
Michael Noble No image.svg 20 June 1970 15 October 1970

Secretary of State for Trade and Industry
& President of the Board of Trade (1970–1974)
[edit]

Name Portrait Took office Left office
John Davies No image.svg 15 October 1970 5 November 1972
Peter Walker No image.svg 5 November 1972 4 March 1974

Secretary of State for Industry (1974–1983)[edit]

Secretary of State for Industry[edit]

Secretary of State for Prices and Consumer Protection[edit]

Secretary of State for Trade
& President of the Board of Trade
[edit]

Political party
Name Portrait Took office Left office Name Portrait Took office Left office Name Portrait Took office Left office
Tony Benn Tony Benn2.jpg 5 March 1974 10 June 1975 Shirley Williams Shirley Williams at Birmingham 2010.jpg 5 March 1974 10 September 1976 Peter Shore No image.svg 5 March 1974 8 April 1976 Labour
Eric Varley No image.svg 10 June 1975 4 May 1979 Edmund Dell No image.svg 8 April 1976 11 November 1978
Roy Hattersley Roy Hattersley 2012 cropped 2.jpg 10 September 1976 4 May 1979
John Smith 11 November 1978 4 May 1979
Sir Keith Joseph, Bt No image.svg 4 May 1979 14 September 1981 OFFICE ABOLISHED John Nott No image.svg 5 May 1979 5 January 1981 Conservative
John Biffen No image.svg 5 January 1981 6 April 1982
Patrick Jenkin No image.svg 14 September 1981 12 June 1983
The Lord Cockfield No image.svg 6 April 1982 12 June 1983

Secretary of State for Trade and Industry
& President of the Board of Trade (1983–2007)
[edit]

Name Portrait Took office Left office
Cecil Parkinson No image.svg 12 June 1983 11 October 1983
Norman Tebbit Norman Tebbit Edinburgh University Politics Society 2008.JPG 16 October 1983 2 September 1985
Leon Brittan No image.svg 2 September 1985 22 January 1986
Paul Channon No image.svg 24 January 1986 13 June 1987
The Lord Young of Graffham Lord young of Graffham.jpg 13 June 1987 24 July 1989
Hon. Nicholas Ridley No image.svg 24 July 1989 13 July 1990
Peter Lilley No image.svg 14 July 1990 10 April 1992
Michael Heseltine Lord Heseltine2.jpg 10 April 1992 5 July 1995
Ian Lang No image.svg 5 July 1995 2 May 1997
Margaret Beckett Margaret Beckett May 2007.jpg 2 May 1997 27 July 1998
Peter Mandelson Peter Mandelson at Politics of Climate Change 3.jpg 27 July 1998 23 December 1998
Stephen Byers No image.svg 23 December 1998 8 June 2001
Patricia Hewitt Patricia Hewitt.jpg 8 June 2001 6 May 2005
Alan Johnson†† Alan Johnson -9Oct2007-2.jpg 6 May 2005 5 May 2006
Alistair Darling AlistairDarlingABr cropped.jpg 5 May 2006 27 June 2007

† - Primarily referred to as President of the Board of Trade, and not as Secretary of State for Trade and Industry

†† - Alan Johnson was initially announced on 6 May 2005, after the general election, as being "Secretary of State for Productivity, Energy and Industry and President of the Board of Trade", but after just a week, on 13 May, it was declared that the new title would not be used, after widespread derision of the new name, because the abbreviation for Johnson's title, Productivity, Energy and Industry Secretary, would have been "PENIS"[1]

Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform
& President of the Board of Trade (2007–2009)
[edit]

Name Portrait Took office Left office
John Hutton Msc 2009-Sunday, 11.00 - 12.30 Uhr-Zwez 005 Hutton detail.jpg 28 June 2007 3 October 2008
The Lord Mandelson Peter Mandelson at Politics of Climate Change 3.jpg 3 October 2008 5 June 2009

Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills
& President of the Board of Trade (since 2009)
[edit]

Name Portrait Took office Left office
The Lord Mandelson Peter Mandelson at Politics of Climate Change 3.jpg 5 June 2009 11 May 2010
Vince Cable VinceCable2.jpg 12 May 2010 Incumbent

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Profile: Alan Johnson". The Telegraph. 18 June 2005.