Meg Hillier

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Meg Hillier
Meg Hillier headshot.jpg
Chair of the Public Accounts Committee
Assumed office
18 June 2015
Preceded by Margaret Hodge
Shadow Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change
In office
8 October 2010 – 7 October 2011
Leader Ed Miliband
Preceded by Ed Miliband
Succeeded by Caroline Flint
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Identity
In office
28 June 2007 – 12 May 2010
Prime Minister Gordon Brown
Preceded by Joan Ryan (Under-Secretary of State for Nationality, Citizenship and Immigration)
Succeeded by Damian Green (Minister of State for Immigration)
Member of Parliament
for Hackney South and Shoreditch
Assumed office
5 May 2005
Preceded by Brian Sedgemore
Majority 13,225 (31.6%)
Member of the London Assembly
for North East
In office
4 May 2000 – 10 June 2004
Preceded by Constituency established
Succeeded by Jennette Arnold
Mayor of Islington
In office
May 1998 – May 1999
Preceded by Rupert Perry
Succeeded by Jenny Sands
Islington Borough Councillor
for Sussex Ward
In office
5 May 1994 – 2 May 2002
Succeeded by Constituency abolished
Personal details
Born (1969-02-14) 14 February 1969 (age 46)
Hampstead, London, England, UK
Political party Labour Co-operative
Spouse(s) Joe Simpson
Children 3
Alma mater St Hilda's College, Oxford
Religion Roman Catholicism[1]

Margaret Olivia Hillier (born 14 February 1969) is a British Labour Co-operative politician who has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for Hackney South and Shoreditch since the 2005 general election, and was a junior government minister (2007–10) and was succeeded by Caroline Flint as Shadow Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change in the Labour Party October 2011 reshuffle. [2]


Hillier was educated at Portsmouth High School, an independent fee-paying school for girls in Southsea, Hampshire, followed by St Hilda's College at the University of Oxford, where she read Philosophy, Politics and Economics and during her time there was elected Librarian of the Oxford Union Society.[citation needed]

Early career[edit]

Hillier worked as a journalist and was elected as a Councillor in the London Borough of Islington in 1994, serving as the Mayor of Islington in 1998, before standing down from the Council in 2002. She was elected as a founding Member of the London Assembly for North East London at the first London Assembly election of 2000, she served on the Assembly until 2004, and was a board member of Transport for London until she was elected serve in Parliament.[citation needed]

Parliamentary career[edit]

In 2004 Hillier was selected as the Labour candidate to contest the Hackney South and Shoreditch through a controversial all-women shortlist.[3] She was elected to the House of Commons at the 2005 general election following the retirement of the Labour MP Brian Sedgemore.

During the election campaign Sedgemore resigned from Labour and joined the Liberal Democrats[4] in protest at the attack on Iraq. She managed to keep the seat comfortably with a majority of more than 10,000 votes, despite being a safe Labour seat. Hillier made maiden speech on 24 May 2005, noting there were more men in the House of Commons that day than there had ever been women MPs.[5]

She served as member of the Northern Ireland Affairs Select Committee for a year until she was appointed Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Ruth Kelly in 2006. In June 2007 she was appointed a Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Home Office. During maternity leave beginning in March 2009 her ministerial role was taken over by Shahid Malik. In March 2008, Hillier voted with the Government in favour of nationwide Post Office closures, including seven in Hackney, of which her constituency forms a part.[6]

In December 2009, while promoting the unpopular National Identity Card scheme as Identity Minister[7][8] in Liverpool, she admitted she had forgotten her own ID card,[9][10] attributing the error to the demands of looking after her baby.[11][12]

In June 2015 Hillier was elected Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee in succession to Margaret Hodge.[13]


Hillier has served Trustee of the War Memorials Trust since 2001.[14]

Personal life[edit]

Meg Hillier married Joe Simpson in 1997; the couple have three children.[15][16]


  1. ^ Signatory to letter to Pope Francis to allow ordination of married men to the Catholic priesthood,; accessed 12 May 2015.
  2. ^ Stratton, Allegra; Sparrow, Andrew; Wintour, Patrick (7 October 2011). "Labour reshuffle: Miliband promotes newly elected MPs". The Guardian. Retrieved 18 September 2015. 
  3. ^ Profile,
  4. ^ Veteran former Labour MP defects to the Liberal Democrats
  5. ^ House of Commons Hansard Debates 24 May 2005 (pt 19)
  6. ^ Post Office Closures The Public Whip website
  7. ^ UK's national ID card unveiled
  8. ^ Holyrood rejects identity cards
  9. ^ Profile,, 16 December 2009; accessed 12 May 2015.
  10. ^ Identity minister forgets ID card,, 16 December 2009
  11. ^ "Red-faced Minister Meg Hillier forgets her identity card for Liverpool roll-out",; accessed 12 May 2015.
  12. ^ Profile,; accessed 12 May 2015.
  13. ^ BBC News report, published 18 June 2015
  14. ^ "Trustees". War Memorials Trust. War Memorials Trust. Retrieved 18 September 2015. 
  15. ^ Notice of marriage of Hillier and Simpson,
  16. ^ "Baby Girl for MP", Hackney Gazetter 21 April 2009; accessed 14 May 2009

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Brian Sedgemore
Member of Parliament
for Hackney South and Shoreditch

Political offices
Preceded by
Ed Miliband
Shadow Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change
Succeeded by
Caroline Flint