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The Right Honourable
 Joan Ryan MP

Member of Parliament
for Enfield North
Assumed office 
1 May 1997
Preceded by Timothy Eggar
Majority 1,920 (4.7%)

Born 8 September 1955 (1955-09-08) (age 54)
Nationality British
Political party Labour

Joan Marie Ryan (born 8 September 1955, Warrington) is a politician in the United Kingdom. She is member of Parliament for Enfield North, and is a member of the Labour Party. She was first elected in 1997, and had previously been deputy leader of Barnet Council.


Early life

She went to St Joseph Secondary School and Notre Dame High School in the Warrington area. At the City of Liverpool College on Huyton Lane in Prescot, she gained a BA in History and Sociology in 1979. In 1981, she gained an MSc in Sociology from the Polytechnic of the South Bank. She worked as a teacher of Sociology and Religious Education in Hammersmith.

Parliamentary career

Ryan was deputy leader of Barnet Council before being elected as Member of Parliament for Enfield North in the 1997 general election.

Ryan was parliamentary private secretary to Andrew Smith, as well as a senior whip. From 5 May 2006, until 29 June 2007 Ryan was Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for nationality, citizenship and immigration at the Home Office, succeeding Andy Burnham. She had particular responsibility for ID cards and passports, the Forensic Science Service, refugee integration, E-borders, extradition and judicial cooperation, the Criminal Records Bureau, Home Office research and science, improving regulation, and design and green issues.

Ryan lives in her Enfield North constituency. She has raised the issue of rail links from Enfield into central London, recently securing an Adjournment Debate with the minister responsible. In the 2005 election she retained her seat with a slightly reduced majority.

Ryan's voting record includes strong support for Iraq war, ID cards. She has campaigned to keep Chase Farm Hospital open and more recently campaigned to keep open a 24 hour local A&E.

Ryan supported Hazel Blears in the Labour party's 2007 deputy leadership election, Blears came sixth in the election. On 29 June, it was announced that the Prime Minister had appointed Ryan as Special Representative to Cyprus and as a Privy Counsellor.

She has called for a leadership election to replace Gordon Brown as Labour Party leader.[1] For this she was fired as Vice Chair of the Labour Party amd Prime Minister's envoy to Cyprus on 14 September 2008.[2]

Joan Ryan was named in the MPs' expenses scandal[3] as having "flipped" her second home in order to claim expenses on her first home in Enfield. Ms. Ryan has now claimed almost £1,000,000 in expenses since 2002[4], and in 2007 was Britain's 3rd highest claiming MP[5]. This is despite living just 14 miles from Parliament[6]. Joan Ryan voted in the House of Commons to keep MPs' expenses secret[7].

Personal life

She married former penguin keeper at London Zoo, Martin Hegarty and they have a son and daughter. She was previously married.


  1. ^ Gordon Brown faces Labour revolt and possible leadership contest, By Jason Beattie, Daily Mirror, 13/09/2008
  2. ^ Labour MP Joan Ryan sacked after open revolt against Gordon Brown, Daily Telegraph
  3. ^ [1] Joan Ryan named by Daily Telegraph in MPs expenses scandal
  4. ^ [2] They Work For
  5. ^ [3]They Work For
  6. ^ [4] London Daily News
  7. ^ [5] Public Whip

External links

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Timothy Eggar
Member of Parliament for Enfield North


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