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Ted Graham, Baron Graham of Edmonton

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The Lord Graham of Edmonton
Portrait by Nick Sinclair, 1992
Opposition Chief Whip of the House of Lords
In office
5 July 1990 – 2 May 1997
Preceded byThe Lord Ponsonby of Shulbrede
Succeeded byThe Lord Strathclyde
Lord Commissioner of the Treasury
In office
14 April 1976 – 4 May 1979
Prime MinisterJames Callaghan
Preceded byJames Dunn
Succeeded byJohn MacGregor
Member of the House of Lords
Lord Temporal
In office
12 September 1983 – 20 March 2020
Life peerage
Member of Parliament
for Edmonton
In office
28 February 1974 – 13 May 1983
Preceded byAusten Albu
Succeeded byIan Twinn
Personal details
Thomas Edward Graham

(1925-03-26)26 March 1925
Newcastle upon Tyne, England
Died20 March 2020(2020-03-20) (aged 94)
Knebworth, England
Political partyLabour and Co-operative
Margaret Golding
(m. 1950; died 2005)
RelativesMiriam Stoppard (cousin)
Ed Stoppard (cousin)
Oona King (cousin)

Thomas Edward Graham, Baron Graham of Edmonton, PC (26 March 1925 – 20 March 2020) was a British Labour and Co-operative politician. He was the Member of Parliament for Edmonton from 1974 to 1983, and became a life peer in 1983.


Thomas Edward Graham was born in Newcastle.[1] During the Second World War he saw active service in the British Army and was seriously injured by enemy fire.[2]

Political career[edit]

Graham was educated at the Co-operative College and held several positions in the co-operative movement from 1939, becoming National Secretary for the Co-operative Party.[2] He was a councillor on Enfield Borough Council from 1961, joining the new London Borough of Enfield in 1964 and becoming its leader for ten years.

In 1966, Graham contested Enfield West at that year's general election.[2] He was Member of Parliament for Edmonton from February 1974, serving as a Parliamentary Private Secretary at the Department of Prices and Consumer Protection from 1974 to 1976, then as a government whip from 1976 to 1979, with the title of Lord Commissioner of the Treasury.[2]

He was an opposition spokesman on the environment from 1980 to 1983, when he lost his seat in the House of Commons to Ian Twinn as part of Labour's landslide election defeat of that year.[2]

On 12 September 1983, after losing his seat, Graham was created a life peer as Baron Graham of Edmonton, of Edmonton in Greater London.[3] He was Labour Chief Whip 1990–97. He was chairman of the Co-operative Council, and served as President of the 1987 Co-operative Congress.[4]

Graham was President of the Institute of Meat and Patron of the Ancient Order of Foresters and of the Edmonton Constituency Labour Party.[citation needed]

On 18 December 1986, Graham was the only Peer in the House of Lords to speak against Lord Halsbury's Local Government Act 1986 (Amendment) Bill, which sought to prohibit the "promotion of homosexuality" by local authorities.[2] This bill subsequently became law as Section 28 of the Local Government Act 1988, when it was reintroduced by David Wilshire in the Commons.

Personal life[edit]

Graham married Margaret Golding in 1950. The couple had two sons. His wife was diagnosed with myotonic dystrophy, a condition that both their sons would inherit; she died in 2005 and their sons shortly thereafter.[1]

Graham was a first cousin of Dr. Miriam Stoppard, Lady Hogg, a physician, and her son, actor Ed Stoppard, Miriam's son, as well as politician Oona King, Lady Hogg's's niece.[5] He was a supporter of Humanists UK and lived in Loughton, Essex.[2]

He died at a care home in Knebworth on 20 March 2020, six days before his 95th birthday.[2]


  1. ^ a b Langdon, Julia (1 April 2020). "Lord Graham of Edmonton obituary". The Guardian. Retrieved 18 January 2022.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Langdon, Julia (2024). "Graham, Thomas Edward [Ted], Baron Graham of Edmonton (1925–2020), politician and co-operative movement activist". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/odnb/9780198614128.013.90000381629. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  3. ^ "No. 49479". The London Gazette. 15 September 1983. p. 12103.
  4. ^ Congress Presidents 1869-2002 (PDF), February 2002, archived from the original (PDF) on 28 May 2008, retrieved 10 May 2008
  5. ^ Paul, Geoffrey (21 January 2010). "How is it for you?". The Jewish Chronicle. Retrieved 19 June 2020.


External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by Member of Parliament for Edmonton
Succeeded by
Political offices
Preceded by Opposition Chief Whip in the House of Lords
Succeeded by
Party political offices
Preceded by General Secretary of the Co-operative Party
1967 – 1974
Succeeded by
Preceded by Labour Chief Whip of the House of Lords
Succeeded by