Dick Taverne

Last updated


The Lord Taverne

QC
Official portrait of Lord Taverne crop 2.jpg
Director of the Institute for Fiscal Studies
In office
1970–1979
Preceded byPosition Established
Succeeded by John Kay
Financial Secretary to the Treasury
In office
13 October 1969 19 June 1970
Prime Minister Harold Wilson
Preceded by Harold Lever
Succeeded by Patrick Jenkin
Member of the House of Lords
Lord Temporal
Assumed office
5 February 1996
Life Peerage
Member of Parliament
for Lincoln
In office
8 March 1962 20 September 1974
Preceded by Geoffrey de Freitas
Succeeded by Margaret Jackson
Personal details
Born (1928-10-18) 18 October 1928 (age 91)
Political party Labour (−1972)
Democratic Labour (1972–80) Social Democratic (1981–88) Liberal Democrats (1988–)
Alma mater Balliol College, Oxford

Dick Taverne, Baron Taverne, QC (born 18 October 1928) is an English Liberal Democrat politician and life peer in the House of Lords. In 1972 he was deselected as a Labour Member of Parliament (MP) for Lincoln, [1] so he left the Labour Party and resigned his seat, forcing a by-election which he won. [2]

Contents

Taverne's 1973 victory in Lincoln was short-lived: Labour regained the seat at the October 1974 general election. However, his success opened the possibility of a realignment on the left of British politics, which took shape in 1981 as the Social Democratic Party (SDP), which Taverne joined. He later joined the Liberal Democrats when the SDP merged with the Liberal Party.

Career

Educated at Charterhouse School, and then Balliol College, Oxford, he graduated in Philosophy and Ancient History, qualified as a barrister in 1954 and became a Queen's Counsel (QC) in 1965.

He unsuccessfully contested Putney as the Labour Party candidate at the 1959 general election, [3] and was elected as the Member of Parliament (MP) for Lincoln at a by-election in March 1962. [3] Under Harold Wilson's premiership in the 1960s, he served as a Home Office Minister from 1966 to 1968, Minister of State at the Treasury from 1968 to 1969 and then as Financial Secretary to the Treasury from 1969 to 1970.[ citation needed ] In 1970, he helped to launch the Institute for Fiscal Studies, now an influential independent think tank and was the first Director, later chairman. [4]

In 1972 he was deselected by the Lincoln Constituency Labour Party, [5] [2] [6] who disagreed with his pro-European Economic Community views. He then resigned from the Labour Party and from Parliament, and formed the Lincoln Democratic Labour Association. He was re-elected as an Independent Democratic Labour candidate at a by-election in March 1973, and held the seat at the February 1974 general election.

Taverne lost his seat in Parliament at the October 1974 general election. but he continued to remain active with the Democratic Labour Association until it folded after the 1979 general election.[ citation needed ] He was a leading social democratic thinker, publishing The Future of the Left: Lincoln and After in 1974.

When the Social Democratic Party (SDP) was formed in the early 1980s, he joined them, serving on their national committee from 1981 until 1987. He stood as an SDP candidate in the 1982 Peckham by-election, coming second with 32% of the vote, and in the 1983 general election, he stood in Dulwich, coming third with 22%. When the SDP merged with the Liberal Party he joined the new Liberal Democrats, serving on its Federal Policy Committee from 1989 until 1990. On 5 February 1996 he was created a life peer as Baron Taverne, of Pimlico in the City of Westminster , [7] and sits in the House of Lords as a Liberal Democrat. In May 2006 he was an unsuccessful candidate for the Liberal Democrats in local elections to Westminster City Council in the Marylebone High Street ward. [8]

In 1955, he married Janice Hennessey, a scientist.[ clarification needed ] He became interested in science and public policy, and in 2002 founded Sense About Science, a charity with the objective of advancing public understanding of science and the evidence-based approach to scientific issues. He was elected President of the Research Defence Society in 2004. He was a member of the House of Lords Committee on the Use of Animals in Scientific Procedures, and is currently a member of the Science and Technology Committee of the House of Lords. He is the author of The March of Unreason, published by Oxford University Press in March 2005.[ citation needed ]

He is an Honorary Associate of the National Secular Society [9] and a Distinguished Supporter of Humanists UK, as well as a vice-chair of the All Party Parliamentary Humanist Group. [10] He is a former member of the Steering Committee of the Bilderberg Group. [11] He won the Science Writers' Award as Parliamentary Science Communicator of the Year 2005. He is a listed member of Republic, the campaign for abolishing the monarchy.

On 15 September 2010, Taverne, along with 54 other public figures, signed an open letter published in The Guardian , stating their opposition to Pope Benedict XVI's state visit to the UK. [12]

Taverne was interviewed in 2012 as part of The History of Parliament's oral history project. [13] [14]

In 2014 Taverne published his memoir, Against the Tide.

Books

See also

Related Research Articles

Shirley Williams British politician (born 1930)

Shirley Vivian Teresa Brittain Williams, Baroness Williams of Crosby, is a British politician and academic who represents the Liberal Democrats. Originally a Labour Member of Parliament (MP) and Cabinet Minister, she was one of the 'Gang of Four' rebels who founded the Social Democratic Party (SDP) in 1981.

Robert Maclennan, Baron Maclennan of Rogart Former British politician

Robert Adam Ross Maclennan, Baron Maclennan of Rogart, was a British Liberal Democrat politician and life peer.

Bill Rodgers, Baron Rodgers of Quarry Bank British politician (born 1928)

William Thomas Rodgers, Baron Rodgers of Quarry Bank, PC is a British politician who served as a cabinet minister in the 1970s, and was one of the 'Gang of Four' of senior British Labour Party politicians who defected to form the Social Democratic Party (SDP). He subsequently helped to lead the SDP into the merger that formed the Liberal Democrats in 1988, and later served as that party's leader in the House of Lords between 1997 and 2001.

Democratic Labour was a minor political party operating in the United Kingdom in the 1970s. It was formed by the Labour MP, Dick Taverne when his Constituency Labour Party (Lincoln) asked him to stand down as their candidate at the next general election. He had fallen out with them over Britain's continued membership of the European Economic Community which he supported but they did not.

The Campaign for Social Democracy was a minor political party which stood candidates in the February 1974 United Kingdom general election.

Hackney South and Shoreditch (UK Parliament constituency) Parliamentary constituency in the United Kingdom, 1974 onwards

Hackney South and Shoreditch is a constituency represented in the House of Commons of the UK Parliament since 2005 by Meg Hillier of the Labour Party and of the Co-operative Party.

John Roper, Baron Roper British politician (1935-2016)

John Francis Hodgess Roper, Baron Roper PC, was a British Liberal Democrat politician.

Social Democratic Party (UK, 1988) political party in the United Kingdom (1988-90)

The Social Democratic Party (SDP) formed in 1988 was a political party in the United Kingdom led by David Owen which lasted for only two years. The party was formed as a result of the original Social Democratic Party, created in 1981 by the "Gang of Four" voting to turn its electoral alliance with the Liberal Party into a full merger of the two parties. The new Social and Liberal Democrats (SLD) party thus gained all of the records and assets of the original SDP.

Ian Wrigglesworth British politician (born 1939)

Ian William Wrigglesworth, Baron Wrigglesworth is a Liberal Democrat peer.

1982 Social Democratic Party leadership election

The 1982 Social Democratic Party leadership election was called following the formation of the Social Democratic Party (SDP). The party had been founded by the Gang of Four the previous year and had rapidly built up its membership, but lacked a formal leadership structure. Each of the Gang of Four was regarded as coequal leader.

Sir Arthur James Irvine, QC PC was a British barrister and politician. He was the Labour MP for Liverpool Edge Hill from the 1947 by-election until he died aged 69.

Michael Stuart Thomas is a former British politician, identified with the Labour Party until 1981 and thereafter with the Social Democratic Party (SDP). He became well known for his role in both the establishment of the SDP and then in the SDP's subsequent demise. The SDP's leader, Roy Jenkins, referred to Thomas as the "pint-sized Pavarotti", on the basis of his stocky build and beard together with his ebullient manner.

This is an annotated list of notable records from Parliamentary by-elections in the United Kingdom. A by-election occurs when a Member of Parliament (MP) vacates a House of Commons seat during the course of a parliament.

The Lincoln by-election of 1 March 1973 saw the re-election of Dick Taverne as Member of Parliament for Lincoln as a Democratic Labour representative, after Taverne's pro-Common Market views saw him repudiated by the Lincoln Constituency Labour Party. The by-election led to considerable speculation, stoked by Taverne, about the formation of a new centre party, but Taverne was unable to make his victory last.

Liberal Democrats (UK) Liberal political party in the United Kingdom

The Liberal Democrats are a liberal political party in the United Kingdom. The party has 11 Members of Parliament in the House of Commons, 89 members of the House of Lords, five Members of the Scottish Parliament and one member in both the Welsh Parliament and the London Assembly. It formed a coalition government of the United Kingdom with the Conservative Party from 2010–2015. It is also currently in coalition with the Labour Party in the devolved Welsh government, and has also formed coalitions with Labour in Scotland.

The Chester-le-Street by-election, 1973 was a parliamentary by-election held for the British House of Commons constituency of Chester-le-Street on 1 March 1973.

Ian Swales British Liberal Democrat politician

Ian Cameron Swales is a British Liberal Democrat politician. He was the Member of Parliament for the constituency of Redcar in England. Swales took Redcar from Labour incumbent Vera Baird for the Liberal Democrats in the 2010 general election, with a 21.8% swing. Swales added over 10,000 votes to his 2005 general election total. This was the biggest swing against any Labour candidate in the election and also the biggest gain by any Liberal Democrat. He stood down at the 2015 general election.

Social Democratic Party (UK) Political party in the United Kingdom (1981-88)

The Social Democratic Party (SDP) was a centrist political party in the United Kingdom. The party supported a mixed economy, electoral reform, European integration and a decentralised state while rejecting the possibility of trade unions being overly influential within the industrial sphere.

References

  1. Shaw, Eric, 1949- (1988). Discipline and discord in the Labour Party : the politics of managerial control in the Labour Party, 1951-87. Manchester: Manchester University Press. ISBN   071902482X. OCLC   17412352.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  2. 1 2 "Dick Taverne: "Some of the Labour Party people have absolutely nowhere to go"". www.newstatesman.com. Retrieved 8 October 2019.
  3. 1 2 Stenton, Michael; Lees, Stephens (1981). Who's Who of British Members of Parliament: Volume IV, 1945–1979. Brighton: The Harvester Press. p. 360. ISBN   0-85527-335-6.
  4. Taverne, Dick (March 2014). Against the Tide:politics and beyond (PDF). p. 201.
  5. Shaw, Eric, 1949- (1988). Discipline and discord in the Labour Party : the politics of managerial control in the Labour Party, 1951-87. Manchester: Manchester University Press. ISBN   071902482X. OCLC   17412352.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  6. Garner, Robert, 1960- (1998). British political parties today. Kelly, Richard N. (2nd ed.). Manchester: Manchester University Press. ISBN   0719051045. OCLC   39305531.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  7. "No. 54312". The London Gazette . 9 February 1996. p. 2027.
  8. London Borough Council Elections May 2006 Archived 17 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine (2006) at london.gov.uk, accessed 30 July 2015
  9. "National Secular Society Honorary Associates". National Secular Society. Retrieved 27 July 2019
  10. "All Party Parliamentary Humanist Group". British Humanist Association. Archived from the original on 30 June 2009. Retrieved 3 August 2010.
  11. "Former Steering Committee Members". bilderbergmeetings.org. Bilderberg Group. Archived from the original on 30 June 2009. Retrieved 8 February 2014.
  12. "Letters: Harsh judgments on the pope and religion". The Guardian . London. 15 September 2010. Archived from the original on 30 June 2009. Retrieved 16 September 2010.
  13. "Oral history: TAVERNE, Dick (b.1928)". The History of Parliament . Retrieved 14 July 2016.
  14. "Lord Taverne interviewed by Jason Lower". British Library Sound Archive . Retrieved 14 July 2016.
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Sir Geoffrey de Freitas
Member of Parliament for Lincoln
1962Oct 1974
Succeeded by
Margaret Jackson
Political offices
Preceded by
Harold Lever
Financial Secretary to the Treasury
1969–1970
Succeeded by
Patrick Jenkin
Orders of precedence in the United Kingdom
Preceded by
The Lord Bowness
Gentlemen
Baron Taverne
Followed by
The Lord Thomas of Gresford