Helene Hayman, Baroness Hayman

Helene Valerie Hayman, Baroness Hayman, GBE, PC (née Middleweek; born 26 March 1949) is a British politician who was Lord Speaker of the House of Lords in the Parliament of the United Kingdom. As a member of the Labour Party she was a Member of Parliament from 1974 to 1979, and became a Life Peer in 1996.

Outside politics, she has been involved in health issues, serving on medical ethics committees and the governing bodies of bodies in the National Health Service and health charities. In 2006, she won the inaugural election for the newly created position of Lord Speaker.[1]

The Baroness Hayman

Official portrait of Baroness Hayman crop 2
Baroness Hayman's official parliamentary photo
1st Lord Speaker
In office
4 July 2006 – 31 August 2011
MonarchElizabeth II
Preceded byThe Lord Falconer of Thoroton
(as Lord Chancellor)
Succeeded byThe Baroness D'Souza
Member of the House of Lords
Lord Temporal
Assumed office
2 January 1996
Life Peerage
Member of Parliament for
Welwyn and Hatfield
In office
10 October 1974 – 3 May 1979
Preceded byLord Balniel
Succeeded byChristopher Murphy
Personal details
Born26 March 1949 (age 70)
Political partyCrossbench
Other political
Labour (until 2006)
Spouse(s)Martin Heathcote Hayman (m. 1974; 4 sons)
CommitteesProcedure Committee (2006–11)
House Committee (2006–11)

Early life, education and early career

The daughter of Maurice (a dentist) and Maude Middleweek, Hayman attended Wolverhampton Girls' High School and read law at Newnham College, Cambridge, graduating in 1969; she was President of the Cambridge Union Society in 1969. She worked for Shelter from 1969–71, and for the Social Services Department at the London Borough of Camden from 1971–74, when she was named Deputy Director of the National Council for One-Parent Families.[2]

Personal life

She married Martin Heathcote Hayman (born 20 December 1942) in 1974; they have four sons.[2]

Political career

She participated on William F. Buckley's Firing Line television program in January, 1972 as a member of a panel discussing "The Irish Problem" and featuring Irish official Bernadette Devlin McAliskey.[3]

She contested the Wolverhampton South West constituency in the February 1974 election. She was elected as the Member of Parliament for Welwyn and Hatfield in the October 1974 UK general election. On her election, she was the youngest member of the House of Commons, remaining the "Baby of the House" until the by-election victory of Andrew MacKay in 1977. She was the first woman to breastfeed at Westminster. She lost her seat, a marginal, to the Conservative Christopher Murphy at the 1979 general election.

She was a member of the Bloomsbury Health Authority (later Bloomsbury and Islington Health Authority) from 1985–92, and its Vice-Chair from 1988 onwards.[2] She served on the ethics committees of the Royal College of Gynaecologists from 1982–97, and of the University College London and University College Hospital from 1987–97. From 1992–97, she was a member of the Council of University College, London, and chair of Whittington Hospital NHS Trust.

Hayman was made a Life Peer on 2 January 1996, and took the title Baroness Hayman, of Dartmouth Park in the London Borough of Camden.[4][5] After the Labour Party won the 1997 general election, she served as a junior minister in the Department for Environment, Transport and the Regions and the Department of Health, before being appointed Minister of State at the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food in July 1999.[6]

She became a member of the Privy Council in 2001, but left political office the same year to become chairman of Cancer Research UK (2001–05). She became chair of the Human Tissue Authority in 2005. She was a Trustee of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew (2002–2006) and of the Tropical Health and Education Trust (2005–06). She was a member of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority in 2005-06. She was a member of the Lords Select Committee on the Assisted Dying for the Terminally Ill Bill, 2004–05, and of the Lords Constitution Committee, 2005–06.[2]

Lord Speaker

In May 2006, after the position of Speaker in the House of Lords was separated from the office of Lord Chancellor as part of the reforms under the Constitutional Reform Act 2005, she was one of nine candidates to be put forward for the new role of Lord Speaker. She was nominated as a candidate by Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean and seconded by Lord Walton of Detchant. Her narrow victory in the election was announced on 4 July 2006[7] and she became the first ever Lord Speaker. On her election, Lord McNally, the Liberal Democrat leader in the House of Lords, called her the "Julie Andrews of British politics". Like the Speaker in the House of Commons, but unlike the Lord Chancellor who was also a judge and a government minister, the Lord Speaker resigns party membership and outside interests to concentrate on being an impartial presiding officer.

On 2 March 2011, Hayman gave a lecture to the Mile End Group in the Attlee Suite of Portcullis House. This was the third in a lecture series to commemorate the 1911 Parliament Act.[8] On 9 May 2011, Hayman announced that she would not seek re-election for a second term as Lord Speaker;[9] her successor was Baroness D'Souza.[10]

Honours and awards

See also


  1. ^ "Hayman chosen to be Lords speaker". BBC News. 4 July 2006. Retrieved 4 July 2006.
  2. ^ a b c d Helene Hayman profile at Who's Who 2009, A & C Black.
  3. ^ Firing Line with William F. Buckley, Jr. (26 January 2017), Firing Line with William F. Buckley Jr.: The Irish Problem, Episode S0041, Recorded on March 25, 1972. Guest: Bernadette Devlin McAliskey, retrieved 3 June 2018
  4. ^ "No. 54269". The London Gazette. 5 January 1996. p. 267.
  5. ^ "thePeerage.com". Retrieved 10 July 2006.
  6. ^ DOD Parliamentary Companion online Archived 8 July 2006 at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ "Lord Speaker election results" (PDF). Retrieved 4 July 2006.
  8. ^ A transcript can be read here.
  9. ^ "Lord Speakership Election 2011 - Baroness Hayman's Announcement". Retrieved 11 May 2010.
  10. ^ "Amendments Made on 3 May 2011 to the Standing Orders for Public Business" (PDF). The Stationery Office, Ltd. Retrieved 26 May 2011.
  11. ^ "New Year honours list". The Guardian. London. 31 December 2011.
  12. ^ "No. 60009". The London Gazette (Supplement). 31 December 2011. p. 6.
  13. ^ Hayman received a copy of the key of the City of Tirana, Albania

Offices held

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Lord Balniel
Member of Parliament for Welwyn and Hatfield
October 19741979
Succeeded by
Christopher Murphy
Honorary titles
Preceded by
Dafydd Elis-Thomas
Baby of the House of Commons
Succeeded by
Andrew MacKay
Political offices
Preceded by
The Lord Falconer of Thoroton
as Lord Chancellor
Lord Speaker
Succeeded by
The Baroness D'Souza
A50 road

The A50 is a major trunk road in England between Warrington and Leicester; historically it was also a major route from London to Leicester.

Honours Committee

The Honours Committee is a committee within the Cabinet Office of the Government of the United Kingdom formed to review nominations for national honours for merit, exceptional achievement or service. Twice yearly the Honours Committee submits formal recommendations for the British monarch's New Years and Birthday Honours. Members of the Honours Committee—which comprises a main committee and nine subcommittees in speciality areas—research and vet nominations for national awards, including knighthoods and the Order of the British Empire.

List of Honorary Fellows of Newnham College, Cambridge

This is a list of Honorary Fellows of Newnham College, Cambridge. A list of current honorary fellows is published on the college's website at Honorary Fellows List of Honorary Fellows.

Joan Bakewell, Baroness Bakewell

Clare Balding

Betty Boothroyd, Baroness Boothroyd

Jane Brown

Dame Antonia Byatt

Anne Campbell

Jean Coussins, Baroness Coussins

P. E. Easterling

Sylvia Frey

Uta Frith

Rosalind Gilmore

Helene Hayman, Baroness Hayman

Dame Patricia Hodgson

Brigid Hogan

Ann Mallalieu, Baroness Mallalieu

Brenda Milner

Julia Neuberger, Baroness Neuberger

Jessye Norman

Onora O'Neill, Baroness O'Neill of Bengarve

Dame Fiona Reynolds

Joyce Reynolds

Dame Alison Richard

Pat Simpson

Elizabeth A. Thompson

Emma Thompson

Janet Todd

Sandi Toksvig

Claire Tomalin

Dame Margaret Weston

Shirley Williams, Baroness Williams of Crosby

Rosie Young

Froma Zeitlin

List of barons in the peerages of Britain and Ireland

This is a list of the 1187 present and extant Barons (Lords of Parliament, in Scottish terms) in the Peerages of England, Scotland, Great Britain, Ireland, and the United Kingdom. Note that it does not include those extant baronies which have become merged (either through marriage or elevation) with higher peerage dignities and are today only seen as subsidiary titles. For a more complete list, which adds these "hidden" baronies as well as extinct, dormant, abeyant, and forfeit ones, see List of Baronies.

This page includes all life barons, including the Law Lords created under the Appellate Jurisdiction Act 1876. However hereditary peers with the rank of viscount or higher holding also a life peerage are not included.

List of current members of the British Privy Council

This is a list of current members of the Privy Council of the United Kingdom, along with the roles they fulfil and the date when they were sworn of the Council. Throughout this article, the prefix The Rt Hon. is omitted, because every Counsellor bears it, as is the postnominal PC, as every Counsellor who is also a peer uses it.

The Council is composed mostly of politicians (be they from the British government, other parties, or Commonwealth governments) and civil servants, both current and retired (since membership is for life). Among those politicians generally sworn of the council are Ministers of the Crown, the few most senior figures of the Loyal Opposition, the Parliamentary leader of the third-largest party (currently SNP Westminster Leader Ian Blackford), and a couple of the most senior figures in the devolved British governments, including the First Ministers. Besides these, the Council includes a very few members of the Royal Family (usually the consort and heir apparent only), a few dozen judges (the Supreme Court Justices, the Senior Judges of England and Wales, and the Senators of the College of Justice of the Inner House in Scotland) and a few clergy (the three most senior Church of England bishops).

List of electoral firsts in the United Kingdom

This article lists notable achievements of women, ethnic minorities, people with disabilities, and LGBT people in British Politics.

List of female speakers of national and territorial upper houses

Upper house or usually called the Senate is the one of two chambers in the bicameral legislature. Upper house usually has less power than the lower house. In some countries, its members are appointed rather than elected by popular votes. Speaker of the upper house is the one who takes office as acting head of state in presidential republic. This list presents female speakers of upper house of their respective countries or territories.

List of people from Wolverhampton

This is a list of notable people born in, or associated with, the city of Wolverhampton in England.

List of the first women holders of political offices in Europe

This is a list of political offices which have been held by a woman, with details of the first woman holder of each office. It is ordered by the countries in Europe and by dates of appointment. Please observe that this list is meant to contain only the first woman to hold of a political office, and not all the female holders of that office.

List of wedding guests of Prince William and Catherine Middleton

The following is the guest list for the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton.

Lord Speaker

The Lord Speaker is the speaker of the House of Lords in the Parliament of the United Kingdom. The office is analogous to the Speaker of the House of Commons: the Lord Speaker is elected by the members of the House of Lords and is expected to be politically impartial.

Until July 2006, the role of presiding officer in the House of Lords was undertaken by the Lord Chancellor. Under the Constitutional Reform Act 2005, the position of the Speaker of the House of Lords (as it is termed in the Act) became a separate office, allowing the position to be held by someone other than the Lord Chancellor. The Lord Chancellor continued to act as speaker of the House of Lords in an interim period after the Act was passed while the House of Lords considered new arrangements about its speakership.

The current Lord Speaker is Lord Fowler.


Wolverhampton ( (listen)) is a city and metropolitan borough in the West Midlands, England. At the 2011 census, it had a population of 249,470. The demonym for people from the city is 'Wulfrunian.'

Historically part of Staffordshire, the city grew initially as a market town specialising in the woollen trade. In the Industrial Revolution, it became a major centre for coal mining, steel production, lock making, and the manufacture of cars and motorcycles. The economy of the city is still based on engineering, including a large aerospace industry, as well as the service sector.

Wolverhampton Girls' High School

Wolverhampton Girls' High School is a grammar school for girls in Wolverhampton in the West Midlands of England.


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