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The Right Honourable
 The Lord Waddington

In office
9 April 1992 – 4 May 1997
Preceded by Sir Desmond Langley
Succeeded by Thorold Masefield

In office
28 November 1990 – 9 April 1992
Prime Minister John Major
Preceded by John Ganzoni
Succeeded by John Wakeham

In office
26 October 1989 – 28 November 1990[1]
Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher
Preceded by Douglas Hurd
Succeeded by Kenneth Baker

In office
21 May 1986 – 24 July 1989
Preceded by John Wakeham
Succeeded by Tim Renton

Born 2 August 1929 (1929-08-02) (age 80)
Burnley, UK
Political party Conservative
Religion Church of England

David Charles Waddington, Baron Waddington GCVO DL QC PC (born 2 August 1929) is a Conservative politician in the United Kingdom.


Early life

David Waddington was born in Burnley, Lancashire and educated at two independent schools in North West England: at Cressbrook School in Kirkby Lonsdale, (formerly in Westmorland, since 1974 in Cumbria), and at Sedbergh School (formerly in the West Riding of Yorkshire and also now, since 1974, in Cumbria). He then went to Hertford College, Oxford, where he became President of the Oxford University Conservative Association, and was called to the Bar in 1951.

In 1976 David Waddington QC led the defence in the trial of Stefan Kiszko; a case that would become one of the most notorious miscarriage of justice in recent years. The British tax clerk from Rochdale, who was convicted of the murder of 12-year-old Lesley Molseed, would go on to serve 16 years in prison for a crime he did not commit. This was because Kiszko's defence team made significant mistakes. Firstly, they did not seek an adjournment when the Crown delivered thousands of pages of additional unused material on the first morning of the trial. Secondly, in court, Waddington maintained the inconsistent defence of diminished responsibility which Kiszko had never authorised.[2] Kiszko was finally released in 1992 after the Court of Appeal was told forensic evidence showed that he could not have been the murderer. Ironically, Kiszko's appeal was first lodged on the day Waddington was announced as the new Home Secretary in 1989.

Member of Parliament

He was first elected to Parliament in 1968, at a by-election in the Nelson and Colne constituency caused by the death of Labour MP Sydney Silverman. He was re-elected in 1970 and in February 1974, but lost his seat at the October 1974 general election, by a margin of 669 votes to Labour's Doug Hoyle.

He was returned to Parliament at the by-election in March 1979 for Clitheroe, the constituency being renamed Ribble Valley in 1983.


In government

A junior minister under Margaret Thatcher, Waddington was Parliamentary Under-Secretary at the Department of Employment (1981–83), Minister of State at the Home Office (1983–87) and Chief Whip from 1987 until his elevation to Cabinet level, becoming Home Secretary in 1989.

Life peer

In 1990 he was created a life peer as Baron Waddington, of Read in the County of Lancashire. He served as Lord Privy Seal and Leader of the House of Lords until 1992. He served as Governor of Bermuda 1992–1997.[3]

In 2008 his amendment to the Criminal Justice and Immigration Bill, known as the Waddington Amendment, inserted a freedom of speech clause into new anti-homophobic hate crime legislation.[4] In 2009 the Government failed to repeal the Waddington Amendment in the Coroners and Justice Bill.[5][6]

Personal life

Lord Waddington is currently Chairman of the European Reform Forum.


  1. ^ UKpolitics website
  2. ^ Rose, Jonathan; Panter, Steve; Wilkinson, Trevor (1997). Innocents : How justice failed Stefan Kiszko and Lesley Molseed. London: Fourth Estate. ISBN 1-85702-402-8.  
  3. ^ Staff reporter (1997-05-07). "From Bermuda to the treacle mines for Lord David". Lancashire Evening Telegraph. Retrieved 2009-05-24. "After almost five years as Governor of Bermuda, Lord Waddington has come home to the Ribble Valley."   (Archived by WebCite at
  4. ^ Schedule 16, paragraph 14
  5. ^ Coroners and Justice Bill
  6. ^ Hansard, 12 November 2009

External links

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Sydney Silverman
Member of Parliament for Nelson and Colne
1968–October 1974
Succeeded by
Doug Hoyle
Preceded by
David Walder
Member of Parliament for Clitheroe
Constituency abolished
New constituency Member of Parliament for Ribble Valley
Succeeded by
Michael Carr
Political offices
Preceded by
John Wakeham
Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasury
Succeeded by
Timothy Renton
Preceded by
Douglas Hurd
Home Secretary
Succeeded by
Kenneth Baker
Preceded by
The Lord Belstead
Lord Privy Seal
Succeeded by
The Lord Wakeham
Preceded by
Sir Desmond Langley
Governor of Bermuda
Succeeded by
Thorold Masefield


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