Minister for the Civil Service

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Minister for the Civil Service
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Theresa May

since 13 July 2016 (2016-07-13)
Government of the United Kingdom[3]
Style The Right Honourable
Member of Cabinet
Residence 10 Downing Street
Seat Westminster
Appointer Monarch of the United Kingdom
Term length At Her Majesty's pleasure
Inaugural holder Harold Wilson
Formation 1 November 1968
Deputy Sir Jeremy Heywood
Website Official website
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In the Government of the United Kingdom, the Minister for the Civil Service is responsible for regulations regarding Her Majesty's Civil Service,[4] the role of which is to assist the governments of the United Kingdom in formulating and implementing policies. The position is invariably held by the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.[5]

The Ministry was created for Harold Wilson on 1 November 1968 when responsibilities for the pay and management of the civil service was transferred from HM Treasury to a new Civil Service Department.[6] In recognition of the primary authority of the Prime Minister over the Civil Service, it is a constitutional convention that the Ministry would always be held by the Prime Minister.[7] The list of Ministers for the Civil Service is therefore identical to the list of Prime Ministers of the United Kingdom from 1968 onwards.

By the terms of the Civil Service (Management Functions) Act 1992, the Minister may delegate his or her power to ministers and others such as the Scottish Government.[8] Prime Minister Gordon Brown appointed Tom Watson to be responsible for the civil service as the Minister for Digital Engagement and Civil Service Issues.[9]

Sir Jeremy Heywood has been Cabinet Secretary and Head of the Home Civil Service since 2014.[10]


  1. ^ "HC Stmnt: [Civil Service Department (Transfer of Responsibilities)]". Margaret Thatcher Foundation. 12 November 1981. Retrieved 2 September 2017. 
  2. ^ "Part 3: Changes in the Public Service since 1967 (Continued)". Parliament of the United Kingdom. 1998. Retrieved 2 September 2017. 
  3. ^ Margaret Thatcher announced the abolition of the Civil Service Department to the House of Commons on 12 November 1981.[1][2]
  4. ^ "Civil Service Order in Council 1995" (PDF). UK Civil Service Commissioners. Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 July 2014. 
  5. ^ "Her Majesty's Government". Government of the United Kingdom. 9 June 2009. Archived from the original on 16 February 2010. 
  6. ^ Daintith, Terence; Page, Alan C. (26 August 1999). "Introduction" (PDF). The Executive in the Constitution: Structure, Autonomy, and Internal Control. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-826870-3. 
  7. ^ David Wood (17 October 1968). "Ministers in merger dilemma". The Times (57384). London. p. 1. 
  8. ^ Pilkington 1999, p. 153.
  9. ^ Sparrow, Andrew (2 June 2009). "Profile: Tom Watson". The Guardian. Retrieved 2 September 2017. 
  10. ^ "Sir Jeremy Heywood, Cabinet Secretary and Head of the Civil Service". Government of the United Kingdom. Retrieved 7 September 2017.