Derek Twigg

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Derek Twigg
Derek Twigg 080826-A-8243R-005.JPG
Twigg in August 2008.
Member of Parliament for Halton
Assumed office
1 May 1997
Preceded by Gordon Oakes
Majority 15,504 (37.5%)
Personal details
Born (1959-07-09) 9 July 1959 (age 56)
Widnes, Lancashire, UK
Nationality British
Political party Labour
Spouse(s) Mary Cassidy (m. 1988)
Children 2
Website Derek Twigg

John Derek Twigg (born 9 July 1959) is a British Labour Party politician, who has served as Member of Parliament (MP) for Halton in Cheshire since 1997.

Early life[edit]

Twigg attended Bankfield High School (now Ormiston Chadwick Academy)[1] in Widnes, and afterwards Halton College of Further Education (now Riverside College). At the age of 16, he joined the Civil Service, working for the Department for Employment at Runcorn for the following 19 years.[2]

At the age of 18 Twigg became Branch Secretary of the Civil and Public Services Association (now part of the Public and Commercial Services Union) before joining the Labour Party in 1979. He was elected to Cheshire County Council at the age of 21, serving as a county councillor until 1985. In 1983 he was elected to Halton Borough Council.[2] Between 1996 and 1997, he also worked as a political consultant.

Parliamentary career[edit]

At the general election in 1997, Twigg succeeded Gordon Oakes as Member of Parliament for the Halton constituency. He made his maiden speech in the House of Commons on 10 June 1997. He was appointed Parliamentary Private Secretary to Helen Liddell, and then to Stephen Byers, before serving as a Government Whip from June 2002 until 2004.

In December 2004, Twigg was appointed Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Department for Education and Skills. On 1 May 2005, he was booed and jeered while defending school league tables at the annual National Association of Head Teachers conference.[3] After the general election of May 2005, he became Under-Secretary of State in the Department for Transport.

In September 2006, Twigg was appointed Under-Secretary of State and Minister for Veterans at the Ministry of Defence.[2] In October 2008, he was replaced in this position and, declining the offer of another ministerial post, returned to the back benches.[4]

In 2013, he was among the few Labour MPs to vote against the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill, which eventually passed with cross-party support.[5]

Personal life[edit]

Twigg married Mary Cassidy in January 1988 in Widnes. They have a son and a daughter.

His interests outside politics include hill walking, military history (particularly World War II) and Rugby League.[2] A lifelong Liverpool FC supporter, Twigg attended the 1989 FA Cup semi-final tie between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest at the Hillsborough stadium, and watched the unfolding Hillsborough disaster from the north stand.[2]


  1. ^ "Golden Year for Bankfield School", Inside Halton (Halton Borough Council), December 2008: 7 
  2. ^ a b c d e Biography, Derek Twigg, retrieved 2008-10-12 
  3. ^ Eason, Gary (1 May 2005). "Minister is booed by school heads". BBC News. Retrieved 5 July 2015. 
  4. ^ "MP axed in Brown's reshuffle", Runcorn Weekly News, 2008-10-09: 3 
  5. ^ [Retrieved 26 August 2013]

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Gordon Oakes
Member of Parliament for Halton