Edward Short, Baron Glenamara

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
The Right Honourable
The Lord Glenamara
CH PC
Deputy Leader of the Labour Party
In office
25 April 1972 – 5 April 1976
Leader Harold Wilson
Preceded by Roy Jenkins
Succeeded by Michael Foot
Leader of the House of Commons
Lord President of the Council
In office
5 March 1974 – 21 October 1976
Prime Minister Harold Wilson
James Callaghan
Preceded by James Prior
Succeeded by Michael Foot
Shadow Leader of the House of Commons
In office
6 December 1972 – 4 March 1974
Leader Harold Wilson
Preceded by Michael Foot
Succeeded by James Prior
Shadow Secretary of State for Education and Science
In office
20 June 1970 – 6 December 1972
Leader Harold Wilson
Secretary of State for Education and Science
In office
6 April 1968 – 20 June 1970
Prime Minister Harold Wilson
Preceded by Patrick Gordon Walker
Succeeded by Margaret Thatcher
Postmaster General
In office
4 July 1966 – 6 April 1968
Prime Minister Harold Wilson
Preceded by Tony Benn
Succeeded by Roy Mason
Government Chief Whip in the Commons
Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasury
In office
16 October 1964 – 4 July 1966
Prime Minister Harold Wilson
Preceded by Martin Redmayne
Succeeded by John Silkin
Member of Parliament
for Newcastle upon Tyne Central
In office
25 October 1951 – 4 November 1976
Preceded by Lyall Wilkes
Succeeded by Harry Cowans
Personal details
Born 17 December 1912
Warcop, Westmorland, United Kingdom
Died 4 May 2012 (aged 99)
Political party Labour
Alma mater College of the Venerable Bede, Durham University

Edward Watson Short, Baron Glenamara, CH PC (17 December 1912 – 4 May 2012[1]) was a British Labour politician. He was Member of Parliament (MP) for Newcastle upon Tyne Central and served as a minister during the Labour Governments of Harold Wilson. Following the death of James Allason on 16 June 2011, Short was the oldest living former member of the House of Commons of the United Kingdom. He died just under a year later, aged 99. At the time of his death he was the oldest member of the House of Lords.

Early career[edit]

Short was educated at College of the Venerable Bede, Durham University. He did military service as a Captain in the Durham Light Infantry of the British Army during the Second World War.[2]

Short was elected a councillor on Newcastle City Council where he led the Labour Group. He was first elected to Parliament for Newcastle upon Tyne Central at the 1951 general election. He was appointed to the Privy Council in 1964, and was made a Companion of Honour in 1976.

Postmaster General[edit]

Short was responsible for the outlawing of pirate radio stations such as Radio Caroline. Following the government campaign against the pirates previously led by Tony Benn, his predecessor in the post of Postmaster-General (then the minister with responsibility for broadcasting), Short was responsible for introducing the bill[3] which became the Marine etc. Broadcasting and Offences Act in 1967. In a 1982 interview for BBC Radio's The Story of Pop Radio, Short admitted having enjoyed listening to some of those stations, particularly Radio 390.

As Postmaster General, Short ordered the creation of the 1966 England Winners stamp to celebrate England's victory in the 1966 World Cup.

Education Secretary[edit]

He subsequently served as Education Secretary 1968–70, and became Labour's deputy leader on 25 April 1972 after Roy Jenkins resigned over differences on European policy.[4] Short was seen at the time as a "safe pair of hands." His main rival for the job was the left-winger Michael Foot who was viewed by many on the centre and right of the party as a divisive figure. Short defeated Foot and Anthony Crosland in the same vote.

Lord President of the Council[edit]

Short's new seniority was reflected in his appointment as Lord President of the Council – though not Deputy Prime Minister – 1974–76, but he did not have the stature to mount a leadership bid himself on Wilson's retirement. He was not offered a Cabinet post on James Callaghan's election as Premier. His resignation letter said that the time had come for him to step aside for a younger man; this was sarcasm, as he was replaced by Michael Foot, who was only seven months younger than himself. Short was also nine months younger than Callaghan, who had dropped him from the cabinet.

Peerage[edit]

He was made a life peer as Baron Glenamara, of Glenridding in the County of Cumbria on 28 January 1977, when he left the Commons. One year before, he was appointed Chairman of Cable and Wireless Ltd, which was at the time a nationalised industry. He served in that post until 1980.

As a life peer he was a member of the House of Lords, although he stopped attending regularly a few years before his death.

His name lives on in the House of Commons with the term "Short Money". This refers to funds paid by the Government to help run the Parliamentary office of the Leader of the Opposition. The then Mr Short pioneered this idea during his time in the House.

He was made a Freeman of the City of Newcastle in 2001 "in recognition of his eminent and outstanding public service" and served as Chancellor of the University of Northumbria, a post he retired from in 2005.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Lord Glenamara of Glenridding, 1912-2012 - Northumbria University, Newcastle UK". Northumbria.ac.uk. Retrieved 2012-05-09. 
  2. ^ "Lord Glenamara obituary". Guardian. 2012-05-10. Retrieved 2012-07-28. 
  3. ^ "Marine, & C., Broadxasting (OffencesFFENCES)", HC Deb 27 July 1966, Hansard, vol 732 c1720
  4. ^ "Unity call as Short wins by 29 votes". The Glasgow Herald. 26 April 1972. Retrieved 24 August 2012. 

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Lyall Wilkes
Member of Parliament for Newcastle upon Tyne Central
19511976
Succeeded by
Harry Cowans
Political offices
Preceded by
Herbert Bowden
Government Chief Whip in the House of Commons
1964–1966
Succeeded by
John Silkin
Preceded by
Martin Redmayne
Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasury
1964–1966
Preceded by
Tony Benn
Postmaster General
1966–1968
Succeeded by
Roy Mason
Preceded by
Patrick Gordon Walker
Secretary of State for Education and Science
1968–1970
Succeeded by
Margaret Thatcher
Preceded by
James Prior
Leader of the House of Commons
1974–1976
Succeeded by
Michael Foot
Lord President of the Council
1974–1976
Party political offices
Preceded by
Roy Jenkins
Deputy Leader of the Labour Party
1972–1976
Succeeded by
Michael Foot
Academic offices
New office Chancellor of Northumbria University
1992–2005
Succeeded by
The Lord Stevens of Kirkwhelpington