John Morris, Baron Morris of Aberavon

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The Right Honourable
The Lord Morris of Aberavon
File:Lord Morris.jpg
Attorney General for England and Wales
Attorney General for Northern Ireland
In office
2 May 1997 – 29 July 1999
Prime Minister Tony Blair
Preceded by Nicholas Lyell
Succeeded by The Lord Williams of Mostyn
Shadow Attorney General
In office
9 June 1983 – 2 May 1997
Leader Michael Foot
Neil Kinnock
John Smith
Margaret Beckett (Acting)
Tony Blair
Preceded by Arthur Davidson
Succeeded by Nicholas Lyell
In office
14 July 1979 – 24 November 1981
Leader James Callaghan
Michael Foot
Preceded by Samuel Silkin
Succeeded by Peter Archer
Shadow Secretary of State for Wales
In office
4 May 1979 – 14 July 1979
Prime Minister James Callaghan
Preceded by Nicholas Edwards
Succeeded by Alec Jones
Secretary of State for Wales
In office
5 March 1974 – 4 May 1979
Prime Minister Harold Wilson
James Callaghan
Preceded by Peter Thomas
Succeeded by Nicholas Edwards
Minister of Defence for Equipment
In office
16 April 1968 – 19 June 1970
Prime Minister Harold Wilson
Preceded by Roy Mason
Succeeded by Robert Lindsay
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport
In office
10 January 1966 – 16 April 1968
Prime Minister Harold Wilson
Preceded by George Lindgren
Succeeded by Robert Brown
Member of Parliament
for Aberavon
In office
8 October 1959 – 7 June 2001
Preceded by William Cove
Succeeded by Hywel Francis
Personal details
Born (1931-11-05) 5 November 1931 (age 90)
Capel Bangor, United Kingdom
Political party Labour
Alma mater Aberystwyth University
Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge

John Morris, Baron Morris of Aberavon, KG PC QC (born 5 November 1931) is a retired British politician. He was a moderate[1] Labour Member of Parliament (MP) from 1959 to 2001 and Secretary of State for Wales from 1974 to 1979.

Background and education

Morris was born in Capel Bangor, Aberystwyth in the County of Ceredigion. He was educated at Ardwyn School, the University College of Wales, Aberystwyth and Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge.

Professional career

Morris was a barrister and was called to the Bar by Gray's Inn in 1954. He practised at 2 Bedford Row Chambers, took silk in 1973 and was made a Bencher of Gray's Inn in 1984. Between 1982 and 1997 Morris was a Recorder of the Crown Court.

Political career

He represented Aberavon as its Labour MP from 1959 and was the longest serving Welsh MP until his retirement in 2001, when he was succeeded by Hywel Francis.

He served as Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Power and the Ministry of Transport, Minister of State at the Ministry of Defence, Secretary of State for Wales between 5 March 1974 and 4 May 1979 and returned to Government as the Attorney General for England and Wales and Northern Ireland between 1997 and 1999, having shadowed the role since 1983. As such, he was one of only a small handful of Labour ministers to hold office under Harold Wilson, James Callaghan and Tony Blair.


He was created a life peer as Baron Morris of Aberavon, of Aberavon in the County of West Glamorgan and of Ceredigion in the County of Dyfed, in 2001, made Lord Lieutenant of Dyfed a year later and created a Knight of the Order of the Garter in 2003.

Lord Morris has been Chancellor of the University of South Wales since its formation in 2013. The University of South Wales was formed by a merger between University of Glamorgan (where Lord Morris was Chancellor since 2002) and the University of Wales, Newport. He succeeded fellow Labour politician Lord Merlyn-Rees as the Chancellor for the University of Glamorgan. Lord Morris was President of the London Welsh Trust, which runs the London Welsh Centre, Gray's Inn Road, from 2001 until 2008.[2] He is also a council member of The Prince's Trust.

Arms of John Morris, Baron Morris of Aberavon
Coat of Arms of John, Baron Morris of Aberavon.svg
Life peer as Baron since 2001
A coronet of a Baron
A bull passant Sable armed and unguled Or with a palewise book Argent upon other Sable.
Mantling Argent and Sable.
Sable a Portcullis Or, over all three swords palewise proper headed Or.
Welsh: He who would a leader be, be a bridge
The Order of the Garter circlet.[3][4][5][6]


External links

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
William Cove
Member of Parliament
for Aberavon

Succeeded by
Hywel Francis
Political offices
Preceded by
Peter Thomas
Secretary of State for Wales
Succeeded by
Nicholas Edwards
Preceded by
Michael Havers
Shadow Attorney General
Succeeded by
Peter Archer
Preceded by
Peter Archer
Shadow Attorney General
Succeeded by
Nicholas Lyell
Preceded by
Nicholas Lyell
Attorney General for England and Wales
Succeeded by
The Lord Williams of Mostyn
Attorney General for Northern Ireland
Honorary titles
Preceded by
David Lewis
Lord Lieutenant of Dyfed
Succeeded by
Robin Lewis
Academic offices
Preceded by
Merlyn Rees
Chancellor of the University of Glamorgan