Maurice Peston, Baron Peston

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Maurice Harry Peston, Baron Peston (born 19 March 1931), is an English economist and Labour parliamentarian.[1] His research interests include macroeconomic policy and the economics of education.[2]

The Right Honourable
The Lord Peston
Personal details
Political party Labour
Children 3 including Robert Peston
Profession Economist
Religion Jewish


Peston was born in 1931 in London, the son of Abraham Peston & Yetta R. (née Malt).[1] He was educated at Belle Vue Boys' School, Bradford, West Yorkshire[1] and Hackney Downs School, and then graduated from the London School of Economics and Princeton University.

He is married to Helen (née Conroy), one of their three children being Robert Peston, formerly the BBC's business and economics editor, now ITV's political editor. The couple believed passionately in state education, and sent Robert to the local comprehensive, Highgate Wood School, in Crouch End, north London.[3]



Peston founded the economics department at Queen Mary College, London, and advised various government departments and Labour Secretaries of State from the 1960s through to the 1990s.[4] He remains an Emeritus Professor of Economics at the College.[2]

House of Lords[edit]

Peston was created a life peer as Baron Peston, of Mile End, in Greater London on 24 March 1987.[5] He immediately became Opposition Spokesperson for Energy (until 1997) and Education & Science (until 1997).[6] He also served as Opposition Spokesperson on the Treasury (1990–92) and Trade & Industry (1992–97).[6] He chaired the House of Lords Offices Refreshments Sub-committee from 1993 to 1997.[6]

When Labour took over government, he chaired the influential House of Lords Committee on Economic Affairs from 1998 until 2005.[6] Since then he has worked on the Lords Constitution Committee, and on the committee reviewing the BBC Charter.[6]

Other interests[edit]

Lord Peston is an Honorary Associate of the National Secular Society, and a distinguished supporter of the British Humanist Association.[7]


  1. ^ a b c Burke's Peerage, Baronetage & Knightage, 107th edition, 3 volumes. Burke's Peerage (Genealogical Books) Ltd. 2003. Retrieved 2014-11-05. 
  2. ^ a b "Department of Economics". Queen Mary College, London. 2008-07-22. Archived from the original on 2008-05-29. Retrieved 2008-10-09. 
  3. ^ Grice, Elizabeth (2008-01-24). "Robert Peston: 'I'm not going to become smooth and phoney'". London: The Telegraph. Retrieved 2008-10-08. 
  4. ^ Peston, Maurice (2004-01-11). "Treasure our golden oldies". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 2008-10-08. 
  5. ^ The London Gazette: no. 50879. p. 4493. 3 April 1987. Retrieved 27 June 2009.
  6. ^ a b c d e "Member Profile - Lord Peston". UK Parliament. Retrieved 9 October 2008. 
  7. ^ Distinguished supporters - BHA