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Sir David Roy Lidington KCB CBE (born 30 June 1956) is a British politician who was the Member of Parliament (MP) for Aylesbury from the 1992 election until 2019. A member of the Conservative Party, he served as Minister for the Cabinet Office and Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster from 2018 to 2019[1] and was frequently described as being Theresa May's de facto Deputy Prime Minister.[2][3]


Sir David Lidington

Official portrait of Mr David Lidington crop 2.jpg
Minister for the Cabinet Office
In office
8 January 2018 – 24 July 2019
Prime MinisterTheresa May
Preceded byDamian Green
Succeeded byOliver Dowden
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster
In office
8 January 2018 – 24 July 2019
Prime MinisterTheresa May
Preceded byPatrick McLoughlin
Succeeded byMichael Gove
Secretary of State for Justice
Lord High Chancellor of Great Britain
In office
11 June 2017 – 8 January 2018
Prime MinisterTheresa May
Preceded byElizabeth Truss
Succeeded byDavid Gauke
Leader of the House of Commons
Lord President of the Council
In office
14 July 2016 – 11 June 2017
Prime MinisterTheresa May
Preceded byChris Grayling
Succeeded byAndrea Leadsom
Minister of State for Europe
In office
12 May 2010 – 14 July 2016
Prime MinisterDavid Cameron
Preceded byChris Bryant
Succeeded byAlan Duncan
Shadow Cabinet positions
Shadow Secretary of State
for Northern Ireland
In office
11 November 2003 – 2 July 2007
LeaderMichael Howard
David Cameron
Preceded byQuentin Davies
Succeeded byOwen Paterson
Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
In office
23 July 2002 – 11 November 2003
LeaderIain Duncan Smith
Preceded byPeter Ainsworth
Succeeded byCaroline Spelman (Environment)
Member of Parliament
for Aylesbury
In office
9 April 1992 – 6 November 2019
Preceded byTimothy Raison
Succeeded byTBD
Personal details
Born
David Roy Lidington

(1956-06-30) 30 June 1956 (age 63)
Lambeth, London, England
Political partyConservative
Spouse(s)
Helen Parry (m. 1989)
Children4
Alma materSidney Sussex College, Cambridge
WebsiteOfficial website

Between 2010 and 2016, he served as Minister of State for Europe holding the position for the entirety of David Cameron's premiership, a longer period than any of his predecessors. Theresa May appointed him to the cabinet for the first time in June 2016, where he held a number of roles including Leader of the House of Commons, Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice.[4] He resigned from the government on 24 July 2019, in anticipation of the appointment of Boris Johnson as British Prime Minister. He will not seek reelection in the next general election.[5]

Early life and careerEdit

Born in Lambeth,[6] Lidington was educated at Merchant Taylors' Prep School then Haberdashers' Aske's Boys' School in Hertfordshire, followed by Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge,[7] where he took a degree in History and a PhD entitled "The enforcement of the penal statutes at the court of the Exchequer c. 1558 – c. 1576"[8] on Elizabethan history. While at Cambridge, he was chairman of Cambridge University Conservative Association and Deputy President of the Cambridge University Students' Union.[9] He was the Captain of the Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge team that won the 1979 series of University Challenge. The team also won the 2002 University Challenge – Reunited "champion of champions" series for the show's 40th anniversary.[10]

Lidington's early employment included posts with BP and the Rio Tinto Group before being appointed in 1987 as special adviser to the then Home Secretary Douglas Hurd. He moved to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in 1989 when Hurd was appointed Foreign Secretary.[7]

In the 1987 general election, Lidington stood unsuccessfully in the Vauxhall constituency.

Parliamentary careerEdit

From 1992 to 2010Edit

Lidington was selected as the Conservative candidate for the safe seat of Aylesbury in December 1990. He became the constituency's member of parliament at the 1992 general election.[11]

At Westminster, Lidington previously participated in the Education Select Committee and Conservative Backbench Home Affairs Committee. In 1994, he successfully promoted a Private Members Bill which became the Chiropractors Act 1994.

Lidington first joined the Conservative front bench team in August 1994, when he became Parliamentary Private Secretary to Home Secretary Michael Howard. In June 1997, with the Conservatives in opposition, he became Parliamentary Private Secretary to Leader of the Opposition William Hague. Two years later, in June 1999, he was promoted to become Shadow Home Affairs Minister (deputy to Ann Widdecombe). In September 2001, Lidington was promoted to become Shadow Financial Secretary to the Treasury.[12]

Shadow CabinetEdit

Lidington became a member of the Shadow Cabinet in May 2002, replacing Ann Winterton as Shadow Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (later Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) after she resigned. When Michael Howard was elected Conservative Party leader in November 2003, Lidington became Shadow Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, but was not included as a member of the Shadow Cabinet.[12]

In May 2005, Howard enlarged the Shadow Cabinet, granting Lidington the right to attend it again. He was one of the few Shadow Cabinet ministers left in his old post by David Cameron when the latter became leader in December 2005. But on 2 July 2007, Lidington was demoted to be a junior Foreign Affairs spokesman.[12]

Expenses (2009)Edit

In May 2009, The Daily Telegraph revealed Lidington had claimed nearly £1,300 for his dry cleaning and had also claimed for toothpaste, shower gel, body spray and vitamin supplements on his second home allowance.[13] Lidington repaid the claims.[13]

Lidington was also criticised by local newspaper the Bucks Herald for claiming £115,891 in expenses in one year, almost double his salary.[14]

Since the 2010 general electionEdit

Following the 2010 general election, Lidington was appointed Minister for Europe.[12] In August 2016 following the resignation of David Cameron, Lidington was appointed a CBE in the 2016 Prime Minister's Resignation Honours for his services to the government as European minister.

In November 2013, Lidington was criticised in an editorial of the local newspaper the Bucks Herald after he abstained on votes on the HS2 rail project which will run through his constituency.[15]

On 25 November 2016, when he was serving as Leader of the House of Commons, Lidington deputised for Prime Minister Theresa May at PMQs[16] questioned first-hand by the shadow foreign secretary, Emily Thornberry who also deputised, as per custom, for Jeremy Corbyn on the day.

Under prime minister Theresa May, Lidington was appointed Leader of the House of Commons and Lord President of the Council. This was a position he held till 11 June 2017, when he was promoted to Justice Secretary and Lord Chancellor.[7] His appointment was criticised due to his record on LGBT rights, having opposed scrapping the ban on 'promotion of homosexuality' in schools, as well as civil partnerships.[17] During the debate on the legalisation of same-sex marriage he argued that "marriage was for the procreation of children" and that the "definition of marriage should not be changed without an extremely compelling case for doing so". He later said that he regretted voting against civil partnerships.[18]

On 8 January 2018, during a Cabinet reshuffle, Lidington became the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office. Several media outlets have since referred to Lidington as Theresa May's de facto deputy Prime Minister and a serious candidate for her succession.[2][3][19] Despite this, Lidington has said that he has 'No wishes' to become Prime minister, stating that Theresa May is 'doing a fantastic job'.[20] On 24 July 2019, Lidington resigned as Cabinet Office Minister & Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster. On 10 September, Lidington was appointed a Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath in Theresa May's resignation honours "for political and public service".[21]

Writing in his local newspaper, the Bucks Herald, on 30 October 2019, Lidington said he was not planning to seek re-election at the next general election.[5]

Personal lifeEdit

Lidington and his wife Helen[22][23] have four sons.[7] He was raised as a Congregationalist but is now an Anglican.[17]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "May appoints David Lidington as cabinet office minister – May's office". Reuters. 8 January 2018. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  2. ^ a b "David Lidington urges Sturgeon to back Brexit deal for good of Scotland". Express.co.uk. 17 November 2018. Retrieved 12 December 2018.
  3. ^ a b Johnson, Simon (29 November 2018). "David Lidington pledges Britain would follow Northern Ireland single market rules for backstop duration". The Telegraph. ISSN 0307-1235. Retrieved 12 December 2018.
  4. ^ "Her Majesty's Government". 13 May 2010. Archived from the original on 15 May 2010. Retrieved 13 November 2010.
  5. ^ a b Bamford, Thomas (30 October 2019). "Aylesbury MP Sir David Lidington to step down at next general election". Bucks Herald. Retrieved 30 October 2019.
  6. ^ "Index entry". FreeBMD. ONS. Retrieved 1 February 2018.
  7. ^ a b c d "The Rt Hon David Lidington MP – GOV.UK". www.gov.uk. Retrieved 22 June 2017.
  8. ^ Lidington, David Roy (1988). The Enforcement of the Penal Statutes at the Court of the Exchequer C.1558-c.1576. University of Cambridge.
  9. ^ "A new home for Cambridge University Students' Union". University of Cambridge. 1 October 2007. Retrieved 22 June 2017.
  10. ^ "BBC – Press Office – University Challenge Reunited final". BBC. Retrieved 22 June 2017.
  11. ^ "Rt Hon David Lidington MP". UK Parliament. Retrieved 22 June 2017.
  12. ^ a b c d "Rt Hon David Lidington". Aylesbury Constituency Conservative Association. Retrieved 22 June 2017.
  13. ^ a b Gammell, Caroline (22 May 2009). "MPs' expenses: David Lidington is Mr Clean (but you pay for his soap)". The Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on 25 May 2009. Retrieved 7 June 2009.
  14. ^ "MPs Expenses: The price of democracy in Aylesbury Vale". The Bucks Herald. Archived from the original on 25 May 2009. Retrieved 9 April 2010.
  15. ^ "Editor's comment: Time fast approaching for Mr Lidington to stand up and be counted over HS2". The Bucks Herald. Archived from the original on 9 November 2013. Retrieved 9 November 2013.
  16. ^ Walker, Peter (25 November 2016). "Commons leader David Lidington to take on PMQs for the first time". The Guardian. Retrieved 30 December 2017.
  17. ^ a b "Theresa May appoints Justice Secretary opposed to LGBT rights who said 'marriage is for procreation of children'". The Independent. 12 June 2017.
  18. ^ "Aylesbury MP David Lidington explains why he voted against gay marriage". Bucks Herald. Retrieved 24 October 2018.
  19. ^ Theresa May facing cabinet plot replace her, PoliticsHome, 24 March 2019.
  20. ^ "David Lidington: 'I don't think that I've any wish to take over from the PM'". 24 March 2019. Retrieved 9 April 2019.[better source needed]
  21. ^ "Aylesbury MP David Lidington given knighthood in Theresa May's resignation honours list". Bucks Free Press. Retrieved 10 September 2019.
  22. ^ "Browser Unsupported". speen-cofe.bucks.sch.uk. Retrieved 27 March 2019.
  23. ^ "David Lidington's 20 years as Aylesbury MP". Aylesbury. Retrieved 27 March 2019.

External linksEdit

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Timothy Raison
Member of Parliament
for Aylesbury

19922019
Succeeded by
Election in progress
Political offices
Preceded by
Peter Ainsworth
Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
2002–2003
Succeeded by
Caroline Spelman
as Shadow Secretary of State for Environment
Preceded by
Quentin Davies
Shadow Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
2003–2007
Succeeded by
Owen Paterson
Preceded by
Chris Bryant
Minister of State for Europe
2010–2016
Succeeded by
Alan Duncan
as Minister of State for Europe and the Americas
Preceded by
Chris Grayling
Leader of the House of Commons
2016–2017
Succeeded by
Andrea Leadsom
Lord President of the Council
2016–2017
Preceded by
Elizabeth Truss
Secretary of State for Justice
2017–2018
Succeeded by
David Gauke
Lord High Chancellor of Great Britain
2017–2018
Preceded by
Sir Patrick McLoughlin
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster
2018–2019
Succeeded by
Michael Gove
Preceded by
Damian Green
Minister for the Cabinet Office
2018–2019
Succeeded by
Oliver Dowden