Peggy Herbison

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The Right Honourable
Peggy Herbison
Minister of Social Security
Minister of Pensions and National Insurance
In office
18 October 1964 – 26 July 1967
Prime Minister Harold Wilson
Preceded by Richard Wood
Succeeded by Judith Hart
Member of Parliament
for North Lanarkshire
In office
5 July 1945 – 18 June 1970
Prime Minister Winston Churchill
Clement Attlee
Anthony Eden
Harold Macmillan
Alec Douglas-Home
Harold Wilson
Preceded by William Anstruther-Gray
Succeeded by John Smith
Personal details
Born Margaret McCrorie Herbison
(1907-03-11)11 March 1907
Shotts, Lanarkshire, Scotland
Died 29 December 1996(1996-12-29) (aged 89)
Lanark, Scotland
Nationality British
Political party Labour
Alma mater University of Glasgow
Occupation Politician
Profession Teacher

Margaret McCrorie Herbison (11 March 1907 – 29 December 1996) was a Scottish Labour politician.

Educated at Bellshill Academy and the University of Glasgow, her early career was spent as a teacher of English and history and as an economics lecturer for the National Council of Labour Colleges. The daughter of a miner, she would later serve on the Miners' Welfare Commission. She was elected as Labour Member of Parliament for North Lanarkshire at the 1945 general election, defeating the Conservative incumbent, future Deputy Speaker of the House William Anstruther-Gray. She held the seat until she retired at the 1970 general election.

In government, she held office as Joint Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Scotland from 1950 to 1951, as Minister of Pensions and National Insurance from 1964 to 1966, and as Minister of Social Security from 1966 to 1967. She was opposition spokesperson on Scotland (1951–1956, 1959–1962), Education (1956–1959), and Pensions (1958–1959 and 1962–1964).

She was a Member of Labour National Executive Committee, and Labour Party Chairman in 1957. In the House of Commons, she was Chairman of Select Committee on Overseas Aid in 1969-70. She was a British delegate to the Council of Europe, and is believed to be the only woman - among 101 members - to attend the very first sitting of the Council's Parliamentary Assembly in Strasbourg in August of 1949.

A lifelong member of the Church of Scotland, from 1970 to 1971 she became the first woman to serve as Lord High Commissioner to the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland.

She died of cancer on 29 December 1996 at St Mary's Hospital, Lanark.


External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
William Anstruther-Gray
Member of Parliament for North Lanarkshire
Succeeded by
John Smith
Party political offices
Preceded by
Edwin Gooch
Chair of the Labour Party
Succeeded by
Tom Driberg
Political offices
Preceded by
Richard Wood
Minister of Pensions and National Insurance
Succeeded by
as Minister of Social Security
Preceded by
as Minister of Pensions and National Insurance
Minister of Social Security
Succeeded by
Judith Hart