John Taylor, Baron Kilclooney
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John David Taylor, Baron Kilclooney, PC (NI) (born 24 December 1937), is a former Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) Northern Irish MP and a life peer. He was born in Armagh in Northern Ireland. He was deputy leader of the UUP from 1995 to 2001, and a member of the Northern Ireland Assembly.
The Lord Kilclooney
|Member of the House of Lords |
|Assumed office |
17 July 2001
|Member of the Legislative Assembly|
25 June 1998 – 7 March 2007
|Preceded by||Constituency created|
|Succeeded by||Michelle McIlveen|
|Member of Parliament|
9 June 1983 – 14 May 2001
|Preceded by||Constituency created|
|Succeeded by||Iris Robinson|
|Member of the European Parliament|
for Northern Ireland
10 June 1979 – 15 June 1989
|Preceded by||Constituency created|
|Succeeded by||Jim Nicholson|
|Member of the Northern Ireland Parliament|
for South Tyrone
25 November 1965 – 30 March 1972
|Preceded by||William Frederick McCoy|
|Succeeded by||Constituency abolished|
|Born||24 December 1937|
Armagh, Northern Ireland
(formerly) Ulster Unionist Party
|Alma mater||The Queen's University of Belfast|
Career and familyEdit
Taylor was educated at The Royal School, Armagh, and The Queen's University of Belfast (BSc). Lord Kilclooney owns Alpha Newspapers which operates local newspaper titles in Northern Ireland and the Republic. He is a member of the Farmers Club in London, and the County Club in Armagh City.
Lord Kilclooney's political career began as MP for South Tyrone in the Northern Irish House of Commons between 1970 and 1972, and he served in the Government of Northern Ireland as Minister of State at the Ministry of Home Affairs.
On 25 February 1972, he survived an assassination attempt in Armagh by the Official Irish Republican Army. Two men, including Joe McCann (who was himself shot dead some months afterwards whilst evading arrest), raked his car with bullets, hitting Taylor five times in the neck and head. Taylor survived, but needed extensive reconstructive surgery on his jaw. Despite this, Taylor soon re-entered politics. He represented Fermanagh & South Tyrone in the short-lived Northern Ireland Assembly elected in 1973 and dissolved in 1974, following the collapse of the power-sharing Executive.
He became a Member of the European Parliament for Northern Ireland in 1979, remaining an MEP until 1989. On 20 January 1987, Taylor left the European Democrats, with whom the Conservatives sat, to join the controversial European Right group.
He was elected to the Northern Ireland Assembly in 1982 for North Down. He then became MP for Strangford in 1983, until 2001. He was a member of Castlereagh Borough Council from 1993–1997. In February 1989 he joined the "hard right" Conservative Monday Club and appears on the list of their speakers at the Annual Conference of its Young Members' Group at the United Oxford & Cambridge Club in Pall Mall, on 18 November 1989, when he spoke on 'The Union and Northern Ireland'.
Following the 2001 general election, on 17 July he was created a life peer as Baron Kilclooney, of Armagh in the County of Armagh, sitting as a crossbencher. He sat on the Northern Ireland Policing Board from 4 November 2001 until 31 March 2006. He continued to sit as a member of the Northern Ireland Assembly until his retirement prior to the elections in March 2007. He remains the only active politician to have participated in all levels of government in Northern Ireland, from local council, the Parliament of Northern Ireland, Westminster, Europe, all previous failed Assemblies and Conventions and the current incarnation of the Assembly.
In January 2012, Taylor wrote to The Scotsman newspaper asserting that Scotland should be subject to partition, depending on the outcome of the Scottish independence referendum. In 2019, Taylor become the subject of ridicule after he accused Alliance council election candidate Jackie Coade of being an Irish nationalist because her Twitter name ends with 'ie'.
Historian & writer Tim Pat Coogan described Taylor as a "particulary venomous Unionist apologist", who he charged as making a "hold-me-back, let-me-at-them" style speech in the European Parliament, saying if there was going to be Loyalist retaliation for the Warrenpoint ambush & Lord Mountbatten killing by the Provisional IRA in August 1979 that he hoped the retaliation would be directed at the South of Ireland. In his speech he said... "If the leadership of the loyalist paramilitaries find it absolutely impossible to refrain from renewed action on the ground, then in no way can that action occur on Ulster soil. It should be directed to targets within the Republic of Ireland, from which most of the serious I.R.A. attacks now originate and within which the Provisional I.R.A. is facilitated by a weak‐kneed Government."” The statement caused a storm of protest. The Irish Minister for Justice called it “plain incitement to further mass murder.” 
He married Mary Todd in 1970 and has six children.
- Gordon Gillespie (24 September 2009). The A to Z of the Northern Ireland Conflict. Scarecrow Press. pp. 243–. ISBN 978-0-8108-7045-1.
- Neill, Maurice (4 December 2003). "Taylor buys up four newspapers in Republic". Belfast Telegraph. Retrieved 3 August 2018.
- "Biography of John Kilclooney". parliament.uk. Retrieved 17 July 2018.
- "CAIN: Chronology of the conflict 1972". ulst.ac.uk. Retrieved 3 August 2018.
- Fleming, Joanne (1 August 2016). "It's outrageous ex-soldier may be prosecuted over shooting of IRA man who tried to kill me, declares peer". Belfast Telegraph. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
- Details of assassination attempt, cain.ulst.ac.uk; accessed 24 October 2015.
- Sharrock, David (30 January 2001). "Unionists' John Taylor to stand down as an MP". The Telegraph. Retrieved 3 August 2018.
- "A Chronology of the Conflict – 1987". Conflict Archive on the Internet. University of Ulster. 1 June 2009. Retrieved 7 March 2010.
- "John Taylor: Profile". BBC News. 30 January 2001.
- Gordon Gillespie (16 March 2017). Historical Dictionary of the Northern Ireland Conflict. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers. pp. 290–. ISBN 978-1-4422-6305-5.
- "Northern Ireland Elections". ark.ac.uk. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
- "No. 56281". The London Gazette. 20 July 2001. p. 8601.
- "Previous Policing Board Members". nipolicingboard.org.uk. 14 October 2015. Retrieved 3 August 2018.
- "Partition could come north of Border". The Scotsman. Johnston Press. 13 January 2012. Retrieved 13 January 2012.
- "Lord Kilclooney asks Alliance's Jackie Coade why Twitter name ends with 'ie' instead of 'uk'".
- "Retaliatory Raids by Ulster Protestants Feared as I.R.A. Presses Attacks". The New York Times. 2 September 1979.
- Tim Pat Coogan - The I.R.A. Fully Revised & Updated pp.448
- Stormont Biography
- BBC Profile
- Cain Biography
- Northern Ireland Policing Board
- Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by John Taylor
|Parliament of Northern Ireland|
| Member of Parliament for South Tyrone
|Northern Ireland Assembly (1973)|
|New assembly|| Assembly Member for Fermanagh & South Tyrone
|Northern Ireland Constitutional Convention|
|New convention|| Member for North Down
|New constituency|| MEP for Northern Ireland
|Northern Ireland Assembly (1982)|
|New assembly|| MPA for North Down
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
|New constituency|| Member of Parliament for Strangford
|Northern Ireland Forum|
|New forum|| Member for Strangford
|Northern Ireland Assembly|
|New assembly|| MLA for Strangford
| Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Home Affairs
|New office|| Minister of State, Ministry of Home Affairs
|Party political offices|
Title last held byHarold McCusker
| Deputy Leader of the Ulster Unionist Party
Sir Reg Empey