Robert Howarth

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Robert Howarth
Leader of Bolton Council
In office
Preceded by John Hanscomb
Succeeded by Barbara Ronson
Member of Parliament
for Bolton East
In office
1964 – 1970
Preceded by Edwin Taylor
Succeeded by Laurance Reed
Personal details
Born Robert Lever Howarth
(1927-07-31) 31 July 1927 (age 89)
Bolton, England
Nationality British
Political party Labour

Robert Lever Howarth (born 31 July 1927) is a British politician from Bolton who was a Member of Parliament (MP) for Bolton East from 1964 to 1970.

Earlier career[edit]

Howarth went to Bolton County Grammar School and then to Bolton Technical College where he trained as a draughtsman. He joined the Amalgamated Engineering Union in 1943 and the Labour Party in 1945; in 1946 he became a member of the trade union Draughtsmen and Allied Technicians Union (DATA).

Municipal affairs[edit]

Popular within the local party, Howarth was elected President of Bolton Labour Party. He was made a School and Technical College Governor in 1955 and served on Bolton Town Council from 1958 to 1960, being Vice-Chairman of the Housing Committee. He was the Labour candidate in the Bolton East byelection in 1960, but was defeated; however, he was reselected to fight the following general election. In 1963 he was again elected to the Bolton Town Council, serving until 1966 and becoming Vice-Chairman of the Planning Committee.


Howarth won the Bolton East constituency in the 1964 general election, and was re-elected in 1966. Howarth did not rebel against the Labour Party whip, but was not appointed to government. He was Chairman of the Parliamentary Labour Party Aviation Committee.

Academic career[edit]

In the 1970 general election, Howarth unexpectedly lost his seat by 471 votes. He became a Lecturer in Liberal Studies at Leigh Technical College, and from 1977, Senior Lecturer in General Studies at Wigan College of Technology; he retired in 1987.

Howarth remained involved in local politics in Bolton and was elected to Bolton Metropolitan Borough Council; he was Leader of the Labour Group from 1975, and then Leader of the Council from 1980. In the 2004 election he was defeated in Crompton ward. He was Chairman of Manchester Airport in 1987-88 and 2002-03. In 2001 he was made a Freeman of Bolton Borough.


Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Edwin Taylor
Member of Parliament for Bolton East
Succeeded by
Laurance Reed