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Derek Foster, Baron Foster of Bishop Auckland

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Leader  Tony Blair
Preceded by  Michael Cocks
Preceded by  Ann Taylor
Name  Derek Baron

Leader  Tony Blair
Party  Labour Party
Preceded by  Ann Taylor
Succeeded by  Michael Heseltine
Leader  Neil Kinnock John Smith Margaret Beckett (Acting) Tony Blair
Role  British member of Parliament

Derek Foster, Baron Foster of Bishop Auckland, PC, DL (born 25 June 1937) was the British member of Parliament for Bishop Auckland, County Durham from 1979 to 2005. He is a member of the Labour Party.


Political career

Foster was Chief Whip of the opposition between 1985 and 1995, becoming a member of the Privy Council in 1993. After Tony Blair became leader in 1994, he was keen to appoint a new Chief Whip and asked Foster to stand aside, in return for the promise of a seat in the Cabinet if and when Labour returned to power. Foster eventually agreed and became Shadow Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster in 1995.

However, when Labour won the 1997 election, Foster was appointed to the relatively junior role of Parliamentary Secretary in the Cabinet Office, under David Clark. After giving the matter further thought, Foster stood down from the government after just two days, and later publicly accused Mr Blair of having broken his promise to him. He was eventually appointed chair of the Commons sub-committee on employment, becoming something of a thorn in the Government's side during Mr Blair's first term. But the employment sub-committee was abolished in 2001 and he became a backbencher, retiring from the Commons at the 2005 general election.

On 13 May 2005 it was announced that he would be created a life peer, and in June 2005 the peerage was gazetted as Baron Foster of Bishop Auckland, of Bishop Auckland in the County of Durham.

Other interests

Foster also has associations with The Salvation Army, serving at the Sunderland Millfield Corps, whilst also a member of the Labour Friends of Israel Policy Council.


Derek Foster, Baron Foster of Bishop Auckland Wikipedia

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