William Brown (trade unionist)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

William Brown in 1929

William John Brown (13 September 1894 – 3 October 1960) was a British trade unionist, politician and Member of Parliament (MP).

Brown grew up in Margate in Kent and served as general secretary of the Civil Service Clerical Association from 1919 to 1942. He joined the Labour Party and stood for several seats before he was elected at the 1929 general election as a Labour MP for Wolverhampton West. In 1931, he resigned the Labour whip, and joined the New Party led by Oswald Mosley. However, the following day, he resigned from the New Party and thereafter sat as an independent.[1]

General Election, 1929: Wolverhampton West [2] Electorate 51,061
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labour William Brown 21,103 49.1 +0.3
Conservative Robert Bird 17,237 40.2 −11.2
Liberal G. H. Roberts 4,580 10.7 N/A
Majority 3,866 8.9 N/A
Turnout 42,920 84.1 −1.8
Labour gain from Conservative Swing +6.8

but lost his seat at the 1931 general election

General Election, 1931: Wolverhampton West [3] Electorate: 51,355
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Robert Bird 26,181 60.5 +20.3
Independent Labour William Brown 17,090 39.5 −9.6
Majority 9,091 21.0 N/A
Turnout 43,271 84.3 +0.2
Conservative gain from Independent Labour Swing +15.0
General Election, 1935: Wolverhampton West [4] Electorate 49,537
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Sir Robert Bird 19,697 54.9 −5.7
Independent William Brown 14,867 41.4 +0.9
Labour R. Lee 1,325 3.7 N/A
Majority 4,830 13.5 −7.5
Turnout 35,889 72.4 −9.9
Conservative hold Swing +3.3

He returned to Parliament at a wartime by-election in 1942. David Margesson the Conservative MP for Rugby and Secretary of State for War had been dismissed from his ministerial job after the loss of Singapore to the Japanese, but was ennobled as Viscount Margesson. The major parties had an agreement not to contest by-elections in seats held by any of their members, but Brown stood as an independent candidate in the Rugby by-election on 29 April, and was returned as the independent MP for Rugby.

By-election, 29 April 1942 [5] Electorate 47,752
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Independent William Brown 9,824 51.8 n/a
Conservative Claude Holbrook 9,145 48.2 -13.3
Majority 679 3.6 n/a
Turnout 18,969 38.5 -35.3
Independent hold Swing n/a

Brown was re-elected at the 1945 general election as an Independent MP against both Conservative and Labour opposition.

General Election 1945: Rugby [6] Electorate 62,696
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Independent William Brown 18,615 40.4 -11.4
Conservative John Lakin 17,049 37.0 -11.2
Labour Ronald Lewis 10,470 22.7 n/a
Majority 1,566 3.4 -0.2
Turnout 46,144 73.6 +35.1
Independent hold Swing -0.1

However, at the 1950 general election, he stood again as an independent, but came third with 20% of the vote. The seat was gained for Labour by James Johnson.[7]

General Election 1950 [8] Electorate 44,228
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labour James Johnson 15,983 50.0 +27.3
Conservative J. Dance 14,947 38.3 +1.6
Independent William Brown 8,080 20.7 -19.7
Majority 1,036 2.7 -0.7
Turnout 39,009 88.2 +14.6
Labour gain from Independent Swing

In 1951 he ran against Edith Summerskill at Fulham West.

External links[edit]

Trade union offices
Preceded by
New position
General Secretary of the Civil Service Clerical Association
1921–1942
Succeeded by
Len White
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Robert Bird
Member of Parliament for Wolverhampton West
19291931
Succeeded by
Robert Bird
Preceded by
David Margesson
Member of Parliament for Rugby
19421950
Succeeded by
James Johnson

References[edit]

  1. ^ Christopher Silvester, The Literary Companion to Parliament, p.108
  2. ^ F W S Craig, British Parliamentary Election Results 1918-1949; Political Reference Publications, Glasgow 1949
  3. ^ F W S Craig, British Parliamentary Election Results 1918-1949; Political Reference Publications, Glasgow 1949
  4. ^ F W S Craig, British Parliamentary Election Results 1918-1949; Political Reference Publications, Glasgow 1949
  5. ^ F W S Craig, British Parliamentary Election Results 1918-1949; Political Reference Publications, Glasgow 1949
  6. ^ F W S Craig, British Parliamentary Election Results 1918-1949; Political Reference Publications, Glasgow 1949
  7. ^ Not updated: UK General Election results: February 1950
  8. ^ F W S Craig, British Parliamentary Election Results 1950-1973; Political Reference Publications, Glasgow 1949