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Following the resignation of Winston Churchill in April 1955, Anthony Eden, then-Foreign Secretary, took over as Leader of the Conservative Party, and thus became Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. Upon assuming office, Eden asked Queen Elizabeth II to dissolve parliament and called a general election for May 1955.[1] After winning the general election with a majority of 60 seats in the House of Commons, Eden governed until his resignation on 10 January 1957.[2]

Eden ministry
1955–1957
Eden, Anthony.jpg
Eden (1945)
Date formed6 April 1955 (1955-04-06)
Date dissolved9 January 1957 (1957-01-09)
People and organisations
MonarchElizabeth II
Prime MinisterSir Anthony Eden
Deputy Prime Minister[note 1]
Total no. of ministers132 appointments
Member partyConservative Party
Status in legislatureMajority
Opposition partyLabour Party
Opposition leader
History
Election(s)1955 general election
Legislature term(s)
PredecessorThird Churchill ministry
SuccessorFirst Macmillan ministry

Contents

HistoryEdit

FormationEdit

In April 1955, Sir Anthony Eden succeeded Winston Churchill as Leader of the Conservative Party and Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, and finally reached the post he had coveted for so long. The original composition of Eden's cabinet was remarkable for the fact that ten out of the original eighteen members were Old Etonians: Eden, Salisbury, Crookshank, Macmillan, Home, Stuart, Thorneycroft, Heathcoat Amory, Sandys and Peake were all educated at Eton College.

He initially retained Rab Butler, with whom he did not get along, as Chancellor of the Exchequer. At the first cabinet reshuffle in December 1955, Eden demoted him to Lord Privy Seal and Leader of the House of Commons. Eden was succeeded as Foreign Secretary by future Prime Minister Harold Macmillan, who, however, only held this post until December of the same year, when he replaced Butler as Chancellor of the Exchequer.

Selwyn Lloyd gained his first cabinet post when he succeeded Macmillan as Minister of Defence in April 1955, and again replaced Macmillan as Foreign Secretary in December of that year. Another future Prime Minister, the Earl of Home, entered the cabinet as Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations in 1955. Gwilym Lloyd George, younger son of former Liberal leader David Lloyd George, remained as Home Secretary.

FateEdit

Eden's decision to take military action over the Suez Crisis of 1956 caused major embarrassment for Britain and their French allies. Eden, then already in declining health, resigned as Prime Minister and Leader of the Conservative Party in January 1957. Harold Macmillan was chosen over Rab Butler to succeed as party leader and Prime Minister.

CabinetEdit

Eden Cabinet[3] [edit]
Portfolio Minister Term
Cabinet ministers
Prime Minister
First Lord of the Treasury
The Rt Hon. Sir Anthony Eden KG MC MP 1955–57
Lord Chancellor The Rt Hon. The Lord Kilmuir GCVO PC QC 1955–57
Lord President of the Council
Leader of the House of Lords
The Rt Hon. The Lord Salisbury CH PC 1955–57
Lord Privy Seal
Leader of the House of Commons
The Rt Hon. Harry Crookshank MP Apr–Dec 1955
The Rt Hon. R. A. Butler CH MP Dec 1955–57
Chancellor of the Exchequer
Second Lord of the Treasury
The Rt Hon. R. A. Butler CH MP Apr–Dec 1955
The Rt Hon. Harold Macmillan MP Dec 1955–57
Foreign Secretary The Rt Hon. Harold Macmillan MP Apr–Dec 1955
The Rt Hon. Selwyn Lloyd CBE QC MP Dec 1955–57
Secretary of State for the Home Department The Rt Hon. Gwilym Lloyd George TD MP 1955–57
Colonial Secretary The Rt Hon. Alan Lennox-Boyd DL MP 1955–57
Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations The Rt Hon. The Lord Home PC 1955–57
President of the Board of Trade The Rt Hon. Peter Thorneycroft MP 1955–57
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster The Rt Hon. The Lord Woolton CH PC Apr–Dec 1955
The Rt Hon. The Lord Selkirk AFC AE PC Dec 1955–57
Minister of Education The Rt Hon. Sir David Eccles KCVO MP 1955–57
Secretary of State for Scotland The Rt Hon. James Stuart MP 1955–57
Minister of Agriculture The Rt Hon. Derick Heathcoat-Amory MP 1955–57
Minister of Labour and National Service The Rt Hon. Sir Walter Turner Monckton GCVO KCMG MC MP Apr–Dec 1955
The Rt Hon. Ian Macleod MP Dec 1955–57
Minister of Defence The Rt Hon. Selwyn Lloyd CBE QC MP Apr–Dec 1955
The Rt Hon. Sir Walter Turner Monckton GCVO KCMG MC MP Dec 1955–56
The Rt Hon. Antony Henry Head MC MP Oct 1956–57
Minister of Housing and Local Government The Rt Hon. Duncan Sandys MP 1955–57
Minister of Pensions and National Insurance The Rt Hon. Osbert Peake MP Apr–Dec 1955
Minister of Public Works The Rt Hon. Patrick Buchan-Hepburn MP Dec 1955–57
HM Paymaster General The Rt Hon. Sir Walter Turner Monckton GCVO KCMG MC MP Oct 1956–57

ChangesEdit

20 December 1955 reshuffleEdit

  • Rab Butler succeeded Harry Crookshank as Lord Privy Seal and Leader of the House of Commons.
  • Harold Macmillan succeeded Butler as Chancellor of the Exchequer.
  • Selwyn Lloyd succeeded Macmillan as Foreign Secretary.
  • Sir Walter Monckton succeeded Lloyd as Minister of Defence.
  • Iain Macleod succeeded Monckton as Minister of Labour and National Service.
  • Lord Selkirk succeeds Lord Woolton as Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster.
  • The Minister of Public Works, Patrick Buchan-Hepburn, entered the cabinet
  • Osbert Peake retired and his successor as Minister of Pensions and National Insurance was not in the cabinet.

19 October 1956Edit

  • In October 1956, Sir Walter Monckton became Paymaster-General, a post which had been vacant since Lord Selkirk's promotion to Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster.
  • Antony Henry Head succeeded Monckton as Minister of Defence.

List of Ministers[3]Edit

Members of the Cabinet are in bold face.

Office Name Dates
Prime Minister
and First Lord of the Treasury
Sir Anthony Eden 6 April 1955 –
 9 January 1957
Lord Chancellor The Viscount Kilmuir April 1955
Lord President of the Council
and Leader of the House of Lords
The Marquess of Salisbury April 1955
Lord Privy Seal
and Leader of the House of Commons
Harry Crookshank April 1955
R. A. Butler 20 December 1955
Chancellor of the Exchequer R. A. Butler April 1955
Harold Macmillan 20 December 1955
Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasury Patrick Buchan-Hepburn April 1955
Edward Heath 30 December 1955
Financial Secretary to the Treasury Henry Brooke April 1955
Economic Secretary to the Treasury Sir Edward Boyle 7 April 1955
Derek Walker-Smith 11 November 1956
Lords of the Treasury Edward Heath April 1955 –
 20 December 1955
Hendrie Oakshott April 1955 –
 13 June 1955
Martin Redmayne April 1955 –
 9 January 1957
Richard Thompson April 1955 –
 8 April 1956
Gerard Wills April 1955 –
 9 January 1957
Hon. Peter Legh 13 June 1955 –
 9 January 1957
Edward Wakefield 24 January 1956 –
 9 January 1957
Harwood Harrison 8 April 1956 –
 9 January 1957
Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs Harold Macmillan 7 April 1955
Selwyn Lloyd 20 December 1955
Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Marquess of Reading April 1955 –
 9 January 1957
Anthony Nutting April 1955 –
 3 November 1956
Allan Noble 9 November 1956 –
 9 January 1957
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs Robin Turton April 1955 –
 20 December 1955
Douglas Dodds-Parker 20 December 1955 –
 9 January 1957
Lord John Hope April 1955 –
 9 November 1956
Hon. David Ormsby-Gore 9 November 1956 –
 9 January 1957
Secretary of State for the Home Department
and Welsh Affairs
Hon. Gwilym Lloyd-George April 1955
Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department Sir Hugh Lucas-Tooth April 1955 –
 20 December 1955
The Lord Mancroft April 1955 –
 9 January 1957
First Lord of the Admiralty James Thomas[a] April 19551
The Viscount Hailsham 2 September 1956
Parliamentary and Financial Secretary to the Admiralty Allan Noble April 1955
Hon. George Ward 20 December 1955
Civil Lord of the Admiralty Simon Wingfield Digby April 1955
Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries Derick Heathcoat-Amory[b] April 1955
Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries Richard Nugent April 1955 –
 9 January 1957
The Earl St Aldwyn April 1955 –
 9 January 1957
Harmar Nicholls 7 April 1955 –
 9 January 1957
William Deedes 20 December 1955 –
 9 January 1957
Secretary of State for Air The Lord de L'Isle and Dudley April 1955
Nigel Birch 20 December 1955
Under-Secretary of State for Air Hon. George Ward April 1955
Christopher Soames 20 December 1955
Secretary of State for the Colonies Alan Lennox-Boyd April 1955
Minister of State for the Colonies Henry Hopkinson April 1955
John Hare 20 December 1955
John Maclay 18 October 1956
Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies The Lord Lloyd April 1955
Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations The Earl of Home 7 April 1955
Under-Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations Douglas Dodds-Parker April 1955
Allan Noble 20 December 1955
Lord John Hope 9 November 1956
Minister of Defence Selwyn Lloyd 7 April 1955
Sir Walter Monckton 20 December 1955
Anthony Head 18 October 1956
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Defence The Lord Carrington April 1955
The Earl of Gosford 26 May 1956
Minister of Education Sir David Eccles April 1955
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Education Dennis Vosper April 1955
Minister of Food Derick Heathcoat-Amory[c] April 1955
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Food Charles Hill April 1955
Minister of Fuel and Power Geoffrey Lloyd April 1955
Aubrey Jones 20 December 1955
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Fuel and Power Hon. Lancelot Joynson-Hicks April 1955
David Lockhart-Mure Renton 20 December 1955
Minister of Health Iain Macleod April 1955
Robin Turton 20 December 1955
Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Health Patricia Hornsby-Smith April 1955
Minister of Housing and Local Government Duncan Sandys April 1955
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Housing and Local Government William Deedes April 1955
Enoch Powell 20 December 1955
Minister of Labour and National Service Sir Walter Monckton April 1955
Iain Macleod 20 December 1955
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Labour Harold Watkinson April 1955
Robert Carr 20 December 1955
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster The Lord Woolton April 1955
The Earl of Selkirk 20 December 1955
Minister without Portfolio The Earl of Munster April 1955 –
 8 January 1957
Paymaster General Earl of Selkirk April 1955
Vacant 20 December 1955
Sir Walter Monckton 18 October 1956
Minister of Pensions Osbert Peake April 1955
John Boyd-Carpenter 20 December 1955
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Pensions John George Smyth April 1955 –
 20 December 1955
Ernest Marples April 1955 –
 20 December 1955
Edith Pitt 20 December 1955 –
 9 January 1957
Hon. Richard Wood 20 December 1955 –
 9 January 1957
Postmaster-General Charles Hill 7 April 1955
Assistant Postmaster-General David Gammans April 1955
Cuthbert Alport 20 December 1955
Secretary of State for Scotland Hon. James Stuart April 1955
Minister of State for Scotland Tom Galbraith[d] 7 April 1955
Under-Secretary of State for Scotland William McNair Snadden April 1955 –
 3 June 1955
James Henderson Stewart April 1955 –
 9 January 1957
Jack Nixon Browne 7 April 1955 –
 9 January 1957
Niall Macpherson 13 June 1955 –
 9 January 1957
Minister of Supply Reginald Maudling 7 April 1955
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Supply Frederick Erroll 7 April 1955
Ian Harvey 11 November 1956
President of the Board of Trade Peter Thorneycroft April 1955
Minister of State for Trade Derick Heathcoat-Amory April 1955
Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Trade Donald Kaberry 7 April 1955
Derek Walker-Smith 19 October 1955
Frederick Erroll 11 November 1956
Minister of Transport John Boyd-Carpenter April 1955
Harold Watkinson 20 December 1955
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport John Profumo April 1955 –
 9 January 1957
High Molson April 1955 –
 9 January 1957
Secretary of State for War Anthony Head April 1955
Hon. John Hare 18 October 1956
Under-Secretary of State and Financial Secretary for War Fitzroy Maclean April 1955
Minister of Works Nigel Birch April 1955
Patrick Buchan-Hepburn 20 December 1955
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Works Reginald Bevins April 1955
Attorney General Sir Reginald Manningham-Buller April 1955
Solicitor General Sir Harry Hylton-Foster April 1955
Lord Advocate William Rankine Milligan April 1955
Solicitor General for Scotland William Grant April 1955
Treasurer of the Household Cedric Drewe[e] April 1955
Tam Galbraith 13 June 1955
Comptroller of the Household Tam Galbraith April 1955
Hendrie Oakshott 13 June 1955
Vice-Chamberlain of the Household Henry Studholme April 1955
Richard Thompson 8 April 1956
Captain of the Gentlemen-at-Arms The Earl Fortescue April 1955
Captain of the Yeomen of the Guard The Earl of Onslow April 1955
Lords in Waiting The Lord Hawke April 1955 –
 9 January 1957
The Lord Fairfax of Cameron April 1955 –
 9 January 1957
The Lord Chesham April 1955 –
 9 January 1957
Notes
  1. ^ Viscount Cilcennin.
  2. ^ Combined with Minister of Food.
  3. ^ Combined with Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries.
  4. ^ Created Baron Strathclyde in 1955.
  5. ^ Knighted.

ReferencesEdit

Notes
  1. ^ Rab Butler did not acquire the title of Deputy Prime Minister of the United Kingdom under Eden. He did however serve as Deputy Leader of the Conservative Party.
Sources
  1. ^ Rothwell, Victor (1992). Anthony Eden: A Political Biography, 1931-57. Manchester University Press. pp. 165–66. ISBN 9780719032424.
  2. ^ Johnston, Robert Lowell (1963). The Prime Ministership of Sir Anthony Eden: A Study of the Man and the Office. University of California. p. 431.
  3. ^ a b David Butler; Gareth Butler (2016). Twentieth-Century British Political Facts, 1900-2000. Springer. p. 24. ISBN 134962733X.
Preceded by
Third Churchill ministry
Government of the United Kingdom
1955–1957
Succeeded by
First Macmillan ministry