Gillian Merron
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Gillian Merron

Gillian Merron
Gillian Merron, September 2009 5 cropped.jpg
Minister of State for Public Health

10 June 2009 - 11 May 2010
Gordon Brown
Sec. of StateAndy Burnham
Dawn Primarolo
Anne Milton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

6 October 2008 - 10 June 2009
Gordon Brown
Sec. of StateDavid Miliband
Meg Munn
Chris Bryant
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for International Development

25 January 2008 - 6 October 2008
Gordon Brown
Sec. of StateDouglas Alexander
Shriti Vadera
Ivan Lewis
Minister for the East Midlands

28 June 2007 - 25 January 2008
Gordon Brown
Position established
Phil Hope
Parliamentary Secretary to the Cabinet Office

28 June 2007 - 24 January 2008
Gordon Brown
MinisterEd Miliband
Pat McFadden
Tom Watson
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport

8 May 2006 - 27 June 2007
Tony Blair
Sec. of StateDouglas Alexander
Karen Buck
Jim Fitzpatrick
Lord Commissioner of the Treasury

17 December 2004 - 8 May 2006
Tony Blair
ChancellorGordon Brown
Derek Twigg
Claire Ward
Assistant Government Whip

28 October 2002 - 17 December 2004
Tony Blair
Chief WhipHilary Armstrong
Member of Parliament
for Lincoln

1 May 1997 - 12 April 2010
Kenneth Carlisle
Karl McCartney
Majority4,613 (12.5%)
Personal details
Born (1959-04-12) 12 April 1959 (age 60)
Ilford, Essex
Political partyLabour
Alma materLancaster University

Gillian Joanna Merron (born 12 April 1959) is the Chief Executive of the Board of Deputies of British Jews, and has served in the post since July 2014.[1] A former British Labour Party Member of Parliament (MP) for Lincoln from 1997 to 2010, when she lost her seat. From 2009 to 2010 she was Minister of State with responsibility for Public Health at the Department of Health.

Early life and career

Merron was born in Ilford, Essex to a Jewish family, and was educated at Wanstead High School in Wanstead in east London. She attended Lancaster University Management School, gaining a BSc (Hons) in Management Sciences. She worked in local government and as a NUPE (later UNISON) union official.

Merron joined the Labour Party in 1984. Before becoming an MP, Merron was the vice-chair for the regional Labour Party executive.[2] She co-ordinated the shadow cabinet central region campaign in the 1992 general election and the 1994 European Parliamentary Election.[]

Parliamentary career

Merron was made a prospective parliamentary candidate (PPC) through an all-women shortlist,[3] and was elected to the House of Commons in May 1997 with a majority of 11,130. From 1997 until 2007, when Quentin Davies defected to the Labour Party, she was Lincolnshire's only Labour MP - and the first since Margaret Beckett had the seat in 1979. In the 2005 general election, her majority was 4,613. She lost her seat to the Conservative candidate Karl McCartney in the 2010 general election.

From October 2002 until May 2006, she was a government whip and Lord Commissioner of the Treasury. She then moved to the Department for Transport, where she worked until the reshuffle on 29 June 2007, when she became a minister at the Cabinet Office and the first ever minister of the East Midlands.[]

Following Peter Hain's resignation on 24 January 2008, Merron was reshuffled again, becoming a Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State in the Department for International Development, leaving both of her previous roles. Following Gordon Brown's next reshuffle on 5 October 2008, Merron was moved to the Foreign Office in the same post, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State. A promotion to Minister of State soon followed, with Merron moving to the Department of Health to take on responsibility for Public Health.[]

Merron followed the party whip in votes on equal gay rights, the hunting ban, foundation hospitals, a ban on smoking in public places, the Iraq war, preventative laws to stop climate change, and The Digital Economy Bill.[4]

She held the following positions:

  • July 1998-July 1999 - Parliamentary Private Secretary to Doug Henderson as Minister of State for the Armed Forces
  • July 1999-June 2001 - Parliamentary Private Secretary to Baroness Symons as Minister of State for Defence Procurement
  • June 2001-October 2002 - Parliamentary Private Secretary to John Reid as Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
  • October 2002-December 2004 - Assistant Government Whip
  • December 2004-May 2006 - Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury & Government Whip
  • May 2006-June 2007 - Parliamentary under Secretary of State at the Department for Transport
  • June 2007-January 2008 - Parliamentary under Secretary of State at the Cabinet Office
  • January 2008-October 2008 - Parliamentary under Secretary of State at the Department for International Development
  • October 2008-June 2009 - Parliamentary under Secretary of State at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office
  • June 2009- May 2010 - Minister of State for Public Health


Merron MP's expense were higher than average.[5] She is one of 98 MPs who voted to support Conservative MP David Maclean's bill to keep their expenses and correspondence secret.[6][7]

Total expenses claimed
Year Total Expenses Ranking out of
2001/02 £94,459 joint 178th 657
2002/03 £123,954 87th 657
2003/04 £136,706 55th 658
2004/05 £139,854 64th 659
2005/06 £133,480 - -
2006/07 £144,914 176th 645
2007/08 £155,972 172nd 645

On 19 June 2009, MP's expenses were revealed (heavily edited) on the Internet. Merron received criticism for purchasing a television, television stand, home theatre kit, and numerous other goods.[8] She wrote on her website: "The majority of claims I make directly pay for professional staff, office costs, communication with constituents, and travel. I do not have a second job, do not employ any family members or friends, nor have I taken the annual increase in ministerial salary."[9]

In the aftermath of the United Kingdom Parliamentary expenses scandal, Sir Thomas Legg recommended that Gillian Merron repay £6,305.17. [10] She repaid this amount in full.[11]

Post-parliamentary career

Since her defeat at the 2010 general election, Merron has become Chair of Bus Users UK[12] formerly known as The National Federation of Bus Users.[13]

In May 2014, it was announced that Merron would become Chief Executive of the Board of Deputies of British Jews the following July.[1][14] Since February 2013, she has served as a Vice-President of the Jewish Leadership Council[15] and served as external affairs officer on the board of Liberal Judaism from July 2012 to May 2014.[16]


  1. ^ a b Rocker, Simon (7 May 2014). "Board of Deputies new chief executive revealed". The Jewish Chronicle. Retrieved 2016.
  2. ^ Gillian Merron MP - Working for Lincoln - About Your MP Archived 17 July 2009 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ Rentoul, John; Stephen Ward; Donald MacIntyre (9 January 1996). "Labour blow as all-women lists outlawed". The Independent. London. Retrieved 2009.
  4. ^ Gillian Merron MP, Lincoln (
  5. ^ "Gillian Merron MP". TheyWorkForYou. mySociety is a project of UK Citizens Online Democracy (UKCOD). UKCOD is a registered charity in England and Wales, no. 1076346. Retrieved 2009.
  6. ^ "How your MP voted on the FOI Bill". The Times. London. 20 May 2007. Retrieved 2010.
  7. ^ Policy #996: "Transparency of Parliament" -- The Public Whip
  8. ^ 'I will do what I always do, my best for Lincoln'
  9. ^[permanent dead link]
  10. ^ "Expenses: The MPs paying over £1K".
  11. ^ Cohen, Justin (7 May 2014). "Former Foreign Office minister appointed to lead the Board". Jewish News. Retrieved 2016.
  12. ^ "New Chair for Bus Users UK". Bus Users UK website. Shepperton, Middlesex: Bus Users UK. 4 April 2011. Archived from the original on 24 December 2013. Retrieved 2012. [Gillian Merron] is now a strategic advisor to the transport industry and will be bringing new strategic direction to Bus Users UK.,
  13. ^ As of 23 April 2012 the name "Bus Users UK" appears on the official register of companies.
  14. ^ "Chief Executive : Gillian Merron". Board of Deputies of British Jews. Retrieved 2016.
  15. ^ "New Jewish Leadership Council members". The Jewish Chronicle. 15 February 2013. Retrieved 2016.
  16. ^ Rocker, Simon (12 July 2012). "Ex-MP joins Liberal Judaism board". The Jewish Chronicle. Retrieved 2016.

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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