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Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, has died, aged 101.

The Queen Mother, born The Honourable Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon, died in her sleep at the Royal Lodge, Great Windsor Park yesterday. Her daughter, Queen Elizabeth II, was at her side.

Queen Mother [Read more…]

Tony Blair: Let Us Re-Order This World Around Us

In one of the great speeches of modern times, the British Prime Minister, Tony Blair, has outlined a persuasive case in support of military action against the Taliban regime in Afghanistan.

BlairIn the powerful, and at times emotional, speech, delivered to the annual conference of the British Labour Party in Brighton, England, Blair said that international terrorism would be fought “at every level, national and international, in the UN, in G8, in the EU, in NATO, in every regional grouping in the world”.

As President Bush said in his address to the US Congress, Blair said “those that finance terror, those who launder their money, those that cover their tracks are every bit as guilty as the fanatic who commits the final act.” [Read more…]

UK Labour Party Election Manifesto – 2001

This is the UK Labour Party’s Election Manifesto for the 2001 General Election.

Prime Minister Tony Blair’s Labour Party secured its second consecutive landslide victory at the General Election on June 7, 2001. Labour won 413 seats, 5 less than in 1997. The Conservatives, led by William Hague, won 166 seats, up 1. The Liberal Democrats, led by Charles Kennedy, won 52 seats, up 6. [Read more…]

Downing Street Baby First In 150 Years Born To Serving Prime Minister

Cherie Blair, wife of British Prime Minister Tony Blair, has given birth to a baby boy.

According to the early edition of The Times: “The baby is the first in more than 150 years to be born to a serving Prime Minister. The last time it happened was in 1849. On that occasion, on July 11, a third child was born to Lady Frances Elliot and her husband Lord John Russell who had been Prime Minister for just over two years.

“The birth of Francis Albert Rollo Russell went almost entirely unrecorded in the newspapers of the day, as did that of his elder brother the previous year.

“The Blair baby has another Downing Street precedent besides the Russells. Viscount Goderich occupied the highest office for barely six months in 1827-28, but managed to sire a son during his brief tenure, and indeed to have it born on the premises. George Frederick Samuel Robinson, the child in question, entered the world at No 10 on 24 October, 1827.

“The new baby is expected to be baptised in about two months, towards the end of July, at about the time that Parliament rises for the summer recess.

“Although Tony Blair is a member of the Church of England, and has no plans to convert, Cherie Blair is a devout Roman Catholic and their other three children are being brought up as Catholics. Like them, the new baby is also expected to be baptised and raised a Catholic. The Blairs take their religion seriously and they will be looking for godparents who will be prepared to fulfil the baptismal promises they make during the service.”

The paper suggests that Peter Mandelson, Labor Party enforcer and Blair confidant, may become godfather.

Hereditary Peers Abolished in Britain

House of LordsAn historic constitutional reform which abolishes hereditary peers in Britain’s House of Lords was passed today.

The Lords voted 221-81 to end 800 years of hereditary titles.

With devolution in Wales and Scotland now established, Labour Prime Minister Tony Blair has presided over the most significant constitutional and parliamentary reform since the Great Reform Act of 1832. [Read more…]

Earl Spencer’s Eulogy of Diana, Princess of Wales

Diana, Princess of Wales, died in a car crash in Paris in the early hours of Sunday, August 31, 1997.

  • Listen to Prime Minister Tony Blair speak at the funeral of the Princess of Wales.
  • Listen to Elton John sing England’s Rose at Diana’s funeral.

This is the eulogy delivered by Earl Spencer, brother of Diana, Princess of Wales, at her funeral on Saturday, 6th September, 1997.

Diana, Princess of WalesI stand before you today, the representative of a family in grief, in a country in mourning, before a world in shock.

We are all united, not only in our desire to pay our respects to Diana, but rather in our need to do so, because such was her extraordinary appeal that the tens of millions of people taking part in this service all over the world via television and radio who never actually met her feel that they too lost someone close to them in the early hours of Sunday morning. [Read more…]

Tony Blair’s First Cabinet – 1997

The Blair Labour government was elected at UK General Election of May 1, 1997.

The Labour Party had a landslide victory, winning 418 seats to the Conservative Party’s 165, with the Liberal Democrats on 46.

Blair served as prime minister for 10 years, winning two more elections in 2001 and 2005. [Read more…]

UK Labour Party Manifesto – 1997

This is the full text of the UK Labour Party’s Manifesto for the 1997 General Election.

UK Labour Party Manifesto – 1997.

1997 Labour Manifesto

Britain will be better with new Labour

‘Our case is simple: that Britain can and must be better’ ‘The vision is one of national renewal, a country with drive, purpose and energy’ ‘In each area of policy a new and distinctive approach has been mapped out, one that differs from the old left and the Conservative right. This is why new Labour is new’ ‘New Labour is a party of ideas and ideals but not of outdated ideology. What counts is what works. The objectives are radical. The means will be modern’ ‘This is our contract with the people’ [Read more…]

UK Labour Party Shadow Cabinet – 1994

This is the UK Labour Party’s shadow cabinet, as appointed in October 1994.

  1. Tony Blair

  2. John Prescott
    Deputy Leader

  3. Robin Cook
    Foreign Affairs

  4. Margaret Beckett

  5. Gordon Brown
    Treasury and Economic Affairs

  6. Donald Dewar
    Social Security

  7. Harriet Harman

  8. Andrew Smith
    Chief Secretary to Treasury

  9. Frank Dobson
    Environment and London

  10. George Robertson

  11. Mo Mowlam
    Northern Ireland

  12. Chris Smith
    National Heritage

  13. Jack Cunningham
    Trade and Industry

  14. Michael Meacher

  15. Ron Davies

  16. David Clark

  17. Jack Straw
    Home Affairs

  18. David Blunkett

  19. Joan Lestor
    Overseas Development

  20. Gavin Strang

  21. Ann Taylor
    Shadow Commons Leader, Citizens Charter

Tony Blair’s New Labour Vision – 1994

This is the text of Opposition Leader Tony Blair’s speech on New Labour, given to the Labour Party conference in Blackpool.

This was Blair’s first party conference since assuming the leadership in July 1994, and his first major speech articulating his vision of New Labour.

Speech by Tony Blair to the Labour Party Conference 1994.


Today I set out my vision for our party and our country: what we are; where we stand; how we will govern. [Read more…]