MP Bell dies after cancer battle

Sir Stuart Bell held the Middlesbrough seat through seven general elections

Sir Stuart Bell held the Middlesbrough seat through seven general elections

First published in National News © by

Senior Labour backbencher Sir Stuart Bell has died after a short battle with pancreatic cancer, his family said.

The 74-year-old had been MP for Middlesbrough for nearly three decades, and served in key positions in Parliament.

Sir Stuart was the son of a Durham miner, and, after a grammar school education, was briefly a colliery clerk and newspaper reporter before becoming a barrister.

Having lived and worked in Paris for a spell, he returned in 1977 to pursue a career in politics.

He unsuccessfully contested Hexham in 1979, and was a member of Newcastle City Council until he won Middlesbrough in 1983. He went on to hold the seat through seven general elections.

While never serving as a minister, Sir Stuart was the party's Northern Ireland spokesman during the 1980s.

And later in his career he was handed a powerful role on the Commons Commission - the body responsible for running the House.

He played a central role during one of Parliament's most difficult periods, as the long-running scandal of MPs' expenses abuses finally emerged in 2009.

Sir Stuart, who had been suffering pancreatic cancer, died at home with his family around him.

Comments (1)

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2:14pm Sat 13 Oct 12

gheese77 says...

I doubt whether his constituents will even notice
I doubt whether his constituents will even notice gheese77
  • Score: 0
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