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Minister for the Civil Service

In the Government of the United Kingdom, the Minister for the Civil Service is responsible for regulations regarding Her Majesty's Civil Service,[3] the role of which is to assist the governments of the United Kingdom in formulating and implementing policies. The position is invariably held by the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.[4]

Minister for the Civil Service
Royal Coat of Arms of the United Kingdom (HM Government).svg
Boris Johnson

since 24 July 2019 (2019-07-24)
Government of the United Kingdom[a]
StyleThe Right Honourable
Member ofCabinet
Residence10 Downing Street
Term lengthAt Her Majesty's pleasure
Inaugural holderHarold Wilson
Formation1 November 1968
WebsiteOfficial website

The ministership was created for Harold Wilson on 1 November 1968 when responsibilities for the pay and management of the Civil Service was transferred from HM Treasury to a new Civil Service Department.[5] In recognition of the primary authority of the Prime Minister over the Civil Service, it is a constitutional convention that the Ministry would always be held by the Prime Minister.[6] The list of Ministers for the Civil Service is therefore identical to the list of Prime Ministers of the United Kingdom from 1968 onwards.

By the terms of the Civil Service (Management Functions) Act 1992, the Minister may delegate his or her power to ministers and others such as the Scottish Government.[7] Prime Minister Gordon Brown appointed Tom Watson to be responsible for the Civil Service as "Minister for Digital Engagement and Civil Service Issues".[8]

Mark Sedwill has been the Cabinet Secretary and Head of the Home Civil Service since 2018.[9]


  1. ^ Margaret Thatcher announced the abolition of the Civil Service Department to the House of Commons on 12 November 1981.[1][2]


  1. ^ "HC Stmnt: [Civil Service Department (Transfer of Responsibilities)]". Margaret Thatcher Foundation. 12 November 1981. Retrieved 2 September 2017.
  2. ^ "Part 3: Changes in the Public Service since 1967 (Continued)". Parliament of the United Kingdom. 1998. Retrieved 2 September 2017.
  3. ^ "Civil Service Order in Council 1995" (PDF). UK Civil Service Commissioners. Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 July 2014.
  4. ^ "Her Majesty's Government". Government of the United Kingdom. 9 June 2009. Archived from the original on 16 February 2010.
  5. ^ Daintith & Page 1999.
  6. ^ David Wood (17 October 1968). "Ministers in merger dilemma". The Times (57384). London. p. 1.
  7. ^ Pilkington 1999, p. 153.
  8. ^ Sparrow, Andrew (2 June 2009). "Profile: Tom Watson". The Guardian. Retrieved 2 September 2017.
  9. ^ "Statement on Sir Jeremy Heywood". Government of the United Kingdom. Retrieved 27 October 2018.