Megan Lloyd George

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Lady Megan Lloyd George
Meganlloydgeorge.jpg
Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party
In office
1949–1950
LeaderClement Davies
Preceded byPercy Harris (1945)
Succeeded byDonald Wade (1962)
Member of Parliament
for Carmarthen
In office
1 March 1957 – 14 May 1966
Preceded byRhys Hopkin Morris
Succeeded byGwynfor Evans
Member of Parliament
for Anglesey
In office
30 May 1929 – 4 October 1951
Preceded byRobert Thomas
Succeeded byCledwyn Hughes
Personal details
Born
Megan Arvon George

(1902-04-22)22 April 1902
Criccieth, Caernarfonshire (present-day Gwynedd), Wales
Died14 May 1966(1966-05-14) (aged 64)
Pwllheli, Wales
NationalityBritish
Political party
Parents

Lady Megan Arvon Lloyd George, CH (22 April 1902 – 14 May 1966), was a Welsh politician and the first female Member of Parliament (MP) for a Welsh constituency. She also served as Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party, before later becoming a Labour MP. In 2016, she was named as one of "the 50 greatest Welsh men and women of all time".[1]

Background[edit]

Megan with her father

She was the youngest child of David Lloyd George and his wife, Margaret, being born in 1902 in Criccieth, Caernarfonshire. Her name at birth was registered with forenames Megan Arvon and surname George, but she adopted her father's barrelled surname "Lloyd George". As her father was raised to the peerage as Earl Lloyd-George of Dwyfor in 1945, she gained the style of Lady Megan (Lloyd George).[2]

Childhood[edit]

Megan in 1910 aged 7

Lloyd George was imaginative and "sprite-like" when young, and was described in the local press as a "daring sceptic", disliking her father's stories of Daniel in the lions' den.[3][4] Around the age of five, she would travel with her father to their house in Brighton, and delight his guests by bringing them an early morning cup of tea while they were still in bed.[4]

She began public engagements at an early age, and on 16 November 1910, at the age of eight, performed the opening ceremony of the extension of the Claremont Central Mission in Pentonville.[5]

Liberal Party[edit]

Like her brother, Gwilym, she followed her father into politics. She became the first female MP in Wales when she won Anglesey for the Liberals in 1929.

Along with her father, she refused to support Ramsay MacDonald's National Government in 1931 and successfully held Anglesey as an opposition Liberal at the 1931 General Election. She held the seat again as a Liberal from 1935 to 1951. During World War II, she was a member of Radical Action, which called for a more radical political stance and for the party to withdraw from the war-time electoral truce.

Throughout the 1940s and 1950s she campaigned for a Welsh Parliament and the creation of a Secretary of State for Wales. Prominent among the radicals in the Liberal Party, she opposed what she saw as the party's drift away from her father's brand of liberalism. During the late 1940s, Lady Megan (as she was universally known) remained on friendly terms with Clement Attlee and there were rumours that she would join the Labour Party.[6] In 1949, Lady Megan was elected Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party in a bid to create unity, but after losing her seat she stood down in 1952. Disillusioned with the Liberals, she indicated in November that year that she would not stand again in Anglesey.[7]

Labour Party[edit]

Family grave in Criccieth
Insignia of C.H.

In 1955, Lady Megan defected to the Labour Party. In 1957, she stood against the Liberals as the Labour Party candidate at a by-election in Carmarthen and won the seat, which she held until her death from breast cancer at Pwllheli in 1966, aged 64.

She was Philip Noel-Baker's romantic partner from 1936 until Irene Noel-Baker's death in 1956.[8]

Awards and legacy[edit]

She was posthumously appointed as a Companion of Honour in the Dissolution Honours List published five days after her death.[9]

In 2016 she was included in a list of "the 50 greatest Welsh men and women of all time".[1]

In 2019 a Purple Plaque to commemorate her was installed on the building that had been her family home in Cricieth.[10]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "The 50 Greatest Welsh Men and Women of All Time". Wales Online.
  2. ^ Mosley, Charles (ed.) (2003). Burke's Peerage & Baronetage, 107th edn. London: Burke's Peerage & Gentry Ltd. p. 2375 (LLOYD-GEORGE OF DWYFOR, E). ISBN 0-9711966-2-1.
  3. ^ "Megan Lloyd George – A "Daring Sceptic" at five years of age!". Carnarvon and Denbigh Herald and North and South Wales Independent. 7 October 1910. Retrieved 24 August 2016 – via Welsh Newspapers Online.
  4. ^ a b "Lloyd George and Megan – Welsh Household in Downing-Street". Carnarvon and Denbigh Herald and North and South Wales Independent. 7 May 1909. Retrieved 24 August 2016 – via Welsh Newspapers Online.
  5. ^ "Miss Megan Lloyd George". Evening Express. 25 August 1910. Retrieved 24 August 2016 – via Welsh Newspapers Online.
  6. ^ Jones 1993, p. 329-30.
  7. ^ Jones 1993, p. 338.
  8. ^ Howell, David (2004). "Baker, Philip John Noel-, Baron Noel-Baker". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/31505. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  9. ^ "No. 43981". The London Gazette (Supplement). 19 May 1966. p. 5786.
  10. ^ "Purple plaque stories". Purple plaques. Retrieved 2 July 2021.

Sources[edit]

Books and Journals[edit]

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Member of Parliament for Anglesey
19291951
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Member of Parliament for Carmarthen
19571966
Succeeded by
Party political offices
Preceded by
post vacant
Previous incumbent: Percy Harris
Deputy Leader
of the Liberal Party

1949–1951
Succeeded by
post vacant
Next incumbent: Donald Wade