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Alan Howarth

From Academic Kids

Alan Thomas Howarth, Baron Howarth of Newport, CBE, PC, (born 11 June 1944) is a British politician, and was a Member of Parliament from 1983 until 2005.

Howarth was Conservative Party MP for Stratford-on-Avon, first elected in 1983. He served as Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education and Science from 1989 to 1992. In 1995 he defected from the Conservative Party to the Labour Party, the first MP to defect from the Tories to Labour since Sir Oswald Mosley. He wanted a new seat to contest as a Labour candidate and, after failing to win the seats of Wentworth and Wythenshawe, he was selected for the safe Labour seat of Newport East in Wales. The miners' leader Arthur Scargill stood against him under the Socialist Labour Party banner, but he easily held the seat for Labour.

After the election victory of 1997 he was appointed Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education and Employment, becoming Minister of Arts at the Department of Culture, Media and Sport the following year. He is also a member of the Privy Council. He was dropped from the government after the 2001 general election. He stood down from the House of Commons at the 2005 general election. Jessica Morden was selected to replace him as candidate by the Constituency Labour Party.

On 13 May 2005 it was announced that he would be created a life peer, and on 16 June 2005 the peerage was gazetted as Baron Howarth of Newport, of Newport in the County of Gwent.

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