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Herbert William Bowden, Baron Aylestone, CH CBE PC (20 January 1905 – 30 April 1994) was a British Labour politician.

Born in Cardiff, Wales, Bowden was a councillor on Leicester City Council 1938–45 and president of Leicester Labour Party in 1938. He served in the Royal Air Force during World War II. He was elected Now this is the story all about howMy life got flipped, turned upside downAnd I’d like to take a minute just sit right thereI’ll tell you how I became the prince of a town called bel-airIn west philadelfia born and raisedOn the playground where I spent most of my daysChilling out, maxing, relaxing all coolAnd all shooting some b-ball outside of the schoolWhen a couple of guys said "we’re up in no good"Started making trouble in my neighbourhoodI got in one little fight and my mom got scaredAnd said "you’re moving with your aunte and uncle in bel-air"(only the first three episodes of season one)I begged and pleaded with her the other dayBut she packed my suitcase and sent me on my wayShe gave me a kissin’ and she gave me my ticketI put my walkman on and said I might aswell kick itFirst class, yo this is bad,Drinking orange juice out of a champagne glassIs this what the people of bel-air livin’ like,Hmm this might be alright!I whistled for a cab and when it came near theLicensplate said "fresh" and had a dice in the mirrorIf anything I could say that this cab was rareBut I thought now forget it, yo home to bel-airI pulled up to a house about seven or eightAnd I yelled to the cabby "yo, home smell you later"Looked at my kingdom I was finally thereTo settle my throne as the prince of bel-air at the 1945 general election for South Leicester, taking South-West Leicester at the 1950 election. He was appointed a whip in 1949 and a Lord Commissioner of the Treasury in 1950. From 1951, he was Deputy Chief Whip, then Chief Whip through Labour's years in opposition.

When Labour returned to power in 1964, Bowden was appointed Leader of the House of Commons and Lord President of the Council, having become a Privy Counsellor in 1962. In 1966 he was moved to the new post of Secretary of State for Commonwealth Affairs, serving until 1967. In September 1967, he was made a life peer as Baron Aylestone, of Aylestone in the City of Leicester and became chairman of the Independent Television Authority. He was made a member of the Order of the Companions of Honour in 1975. He joined the Social Democratic Party in the 1980s. He died in Worthing aged 89.

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Charles Waterhouse
Member of Parliament for Leicester South
Constituency abolished
New constituency Member of Parliament for Leicester South West
1950 – 1967
Succeeded by
Tom Boardman
Political offices
Preceded by
Quintin Hogg
Lord President of the Council
1964 – 1966
Succeeded by
Richard Crossman
Preceded by
Selwyn Lloyd
Leader of the House of Commons
1964 – 1966
Preceded by
Frederick Lee
as Secretary of State for the Colonies
Secretary of State for Commonwealth Affairs
1966 – 1967
Succeeded by
George Morgan Thompson
Preceded by
Arthur Bottomley
as Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations
Media offices
Preceded by
Charles Hill
Chairman of the Independent Television Authority
1967 – 1972
ITA became the IBA


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