Robert Hayward, Baron Hayward

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The Right Honourable
The Lord Hayward
Official portrait of Lord Hayward crop 2.jpg
Member of Parliament
for Kingswood
In office
9 June 1983 – 9 April 1992
Preceded by Jack Aspinwall
Succeeded by Roger Berry
Personal details
Born (1949-03-11) 11 March 1949 (age 69)
Nationality British
Political party Conservative
Alma mater University of Rhodesia

Robert Antony Hayward, Baron Hayward, OBE (born 11 March 1949[1]) is a British Conservative Party politician.

Early life[edit]

Hayward was educated at Abingdon School and Maidenhead Grammar School, where he was Head Boy. He won a scholarship to study Economics (Honours) at the University of Rhodesia. He served as National Vice-Chairman of the Young Conservatives in 1976–77 and was a councillor on Coventry City Council 1976–78.

Parliamentary career[edit]

Hayward first stood for Parliament, unsuccessfully, at Carmarthen, in October 1974,[2] being beaten by the leader of Plaid Cymru, Gwynfor Evans.

He was the Member of Parliament (MP) for Kingswood from 1983 to 1992, when he lost his seat to Labour's Roger Berry. In 1993, Hayward was the unsuccessful Conservative candidate at the Christchurch by-election.

During his time in the House of Commons, he served on the Energy Select Committee (1984-5), the Conservative Party's Aviation Committee (1984-92) and as PPS at the Department for Trade & Industry, including to Michael Howard[3] as the then Minister for Corporate & Consumer Affairs. Hayward was also PPS to Paul Channon[4], the Secretary of State for Transport, between 1987-89, a period that saw the Lockerbie bombing[5], Clapham[6] and Kings Cross[7] rail disasters and the Kegworth air crash[8].

Rugby Referee[edit]

Throughout his time as an MP, Hayward continued to referee rugby union, having qualified in 1980. Following his election defeat in 1992, he was promoted to national level and officiated at division 3 and 4 and county championship matches. Hayward refereed the first inter-parliamentary rugby game - between Britain and France in 1991.

Gulf War hostages[edit]

Hayward was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for his services to friends and families of hostages prior to the Gulf War in 1991 Iraq War,[9] when he established and ran, with others, the Gulf Support Group for civilians who were held after the invasion of Kuwait by Iraq. This service ran initially from Hayward's home then from offices in London. He remains the only serving MP ever to receive a civilian honour for services outside politics.[10][not in citation given]

After Parliament[edit]

Following his Commons career, in 1994 he became Chief Executive of the British Soft Drinks Association. He then moved to become Chief Executive of the Beer and Pub Association in 1999, a post he held until 2009.[2]

Hayward has been a prominent spokesmen on gay and lesbian issues since coming out after leaving parliament, and in 1996 was one of the founding members and first Chairman of the Kings Cross Steelers[11] who successfully competed as the first Gay Rugby Union team in the world. As of 2015, he is currently a Vice-President of the club.[12] In addition Hayward was also a board member of Stonewall for seven years[citation needed] and finance chairman from 1999 until 2003.

Hayward stepped down as CEO of the Beer and Pub Association to concentrate on his career as a psephologist and political analyst. He was an advisor to the then-Chairman of the Conservative Party (Eric Pickles MP) and was widely credited with identifying 'motorway man' as a key factor in the 2010 general election.[13]

During 2009/10 he had responsibility for preparing policy for the Conservative Party to reduce the size of the House of Commons. He subsequently worked at Conservative Campaign Headquarters on the Conservative Party's proposals for the abortive Sixth Periodic Review of Westminster constituencies |2011–13 boundary review].

Hayward was Deputy Chairman of Central YMCA from 2011 until 2017,[10] and Treasurer of Dignity in Dying from 2012 to 2015.[14][2] He was also adviser to the board of Terence Higgins Trust[citation needed] and, from 2012 to 2014, a non-executive director of Portcullis Public Affairs.[15] Since 2014 Hayward has been Presenter of the Business Breakfast Show on Colourful Radio.[16]

It was announced on 15 May 2012 that Robert Hayward would be chairing the government's Public Sector Equality Duty review.[17] This review was completed in September 2013.

In January 2015 he identified that the opinion polls were under-estimating the Conservative vote and over-estimating the Labour vote for the upcoming General Election. The percentage deviations identified were proved to be almost precisely accurate at the election in May. (see Evening Standard 19.1.15 and Guardian 20.1.15 etc.). Similarly, he spoke on Newsnight (7.6.16 and several papers 8/9.6.16) and other broadcast media forecasting a leave result at Britain’s European referendum.’ He can now be regarded as one of the nation’s leading political analysts.

Return to the Parliament[edit]

On 27 August 2015 it was announced in the Dissolution Honours List that Hayward would be awarded a life peerage. He was created Baron Hayward, of Cumnor in the County of Oxfordshire, on 28 September 2015.[18]

In 2017 Hayward revealed that he has been living with Multiple sclerosis.[19]

In December 2017 and January 2018, Lord Hayward appeared on Sky News and other media channels campaigning against the use of plastic wrapping of fruit and vegetables by supermarkets.[citation needed]

Styles of address[edit]

  • 1949–1983: Mr Robert Hayward
  • 1983–1991: Mr Robert Hayward MP
  • 1991–1992: Mr Robert Hayward OBE MP
  • 1992–2015: Mr Robert Hayward OBE
  • 2015–: The Rt Hon. The Lord Hayward OBE


  1. ^ Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "K" (part 2)
  2. ^ a b c "Lord Hayward". UK Parliament. 
  3. ^ "Michael Howard". Wikipedia. 2018-01-11. 
  4. ^ "Paul Channon". Wikipedia. 2017-11-30. 
  5. ^ "Pan Am Flight 103". Wikipedia. 2018-01-18. 
  6. ^ "Clapham Junction rail crash". Wikipedia. 2017-12-11. 
  7. ^ "King's Cross fire". Wikipedia. 2018-01-15. 
  8. ^ "Kegworth air disaster". Wikipedia. 2017-12-30. 
  9. ^ "No. 52588". The London Gazette (Supplement). 29 June 1991. p. 28. 
  10. ^ a b "Central YMCA Trustees". Central YMCA. 
  11. ^ "Information". Kings Cross Steelers. 
  12. ^ "Founder of gay rugby club heading to House of Lords". Pink News. 
  13. ^ Pickard, Jim (22 January 2010). "British parties in election drive to track down Motorway Man". The Financial Times. Retrieved 7 February 2010. 
  14. ^ "Robert Hayward OBE and Cameron Brown join Dignity in Dying Board". Campaign for Dignity in Dying. 
  15. ^ "Portcullis Public Affairs". 
  16. ^ "Colourful Radio". 
  17. ^ "Membership of the Steering Group". Archived from the original on 2013-01-28. 
  18. ^ "No. 61369". The London Gazette. 2 October 2015. p. 18373. 
  19. ^ "Cannabis - Hansard Online". Retrieved 2017-10-08. 


External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Jack Aspinwall
Member of Parliament for Kingswood
Succeeded by
Roger Berry