National Executive Committee

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National Executive Committee
Headquarters London, England
Jim Kennedy
Paddy Lillis
Parent organisation
Labour Party

The National Executive Committee (NEC) is the chief administrative body of the Labour Party. Its composition has changed over the years, and includes representatives of affiliated trade unions, the Parliamentary Labour Party and European Parliamentary Labour Party, constituency Labour parties, and socialist societies, as well as ex officio members such as the Party Leader and Deputy Leader and several of their appointees.

During the 1980s, the NEC had a major role in policy-making and was often at the heart of disputes over party policy. In the Tony Blair era, the committee's role declined and its membership was reformed, but it remains the administrative authority of the party. Its former policy development function is now largely carried out by the National Policy Forum. One of its committees has disciplinary powers including the ability to expel members of the party who have brought it into disrepute or to readmit previously expelled members.

The Labour History Archive and Study Centre, in the People's History Museum in Manchester has the full run of the minutes of the National Executive Committee in their collection.[1]


As of 2015, the NEC had 33 members elected from the following constituencies:

  • 2: Leader and Deputy Leader of the party
  • 1: Treasurer
  • 3: Front Bench MPs nominated by the Cabinet or Shadow Cabinet
  • 1: MEP leader of the European Parliamentary Labour Party
  • 1: Young Labour
  • 12: Affiliated Trade Unions
  • 2: Socialist societies
  • 6: Constituency Labour Parties
  • 2: Labour Councillors
  • 3: Backbench MPs or MEPs elected by all Labour MPs and MEPs

In addition, the PLP Chief Whip, PLP Chair, Scottish Labour Leader and Leader of the Labour Group in the National Assembly for Wales attend ex-officio without a vote.

The General Secretary acts as the non-voting secretary to the NEC.

Current members

(As of October 2015)

  • Jeremy Corbyn MP (Leader)
  • Tom Watson MP (Deputy Leader)
  • Diana Holland (Treasurer)
  • Jon Ashworth MP (Frontbench)
  • Angela Eagle MP (Frontbench)
  • Rebecca Long-Bailey MP (Frontbench)
  • Glenis Willmott MEP (EPLP Leader)
  • Bex Bailey (Young Labour)
  • Keith Birch [Unison] (Div. I - Trade Unions)
  • Jamie Bramwell [UCATT] (Div. I - Trade Unions)
  • Jennie Formby [Unite] (Div. I - Trade Unions)
  • Andi Fox [TSSA] (Div. I - Trade Unions)
  • Jim Kennedy [Unite] (Div. I - Trade Unions)
  • Andy Kerr [CWU] (Div. I - Trade Unions)
  • Paddy Lillis [USDAW] (NEC Chair – Div. I - Trade Unions)
  • Martin Mayer [Unite] (Div. I - Trade Unions)
  • Pauline McCarthy [BFAWU] (Div. I - Trade Unions)
  • Wendy Nichols [Unison (Div. I - Trade Unions)
  • Cath Speight [GMB] (Div. I - Trade Unions)
  • Mary Turner [GMB] (Div. I - Trade Unions)
  • James Asser (Div. II - Socialist Societies)
  • Keith Vaz MP (Div. II - Socialist Societies)
  • Johanna Baxter (Div. III - CLPs)
  • Ann Black (Div. III - CLPs)
  • Ken Livingstone (Div. III - CLPs)
  • Ellie Reeves (NEC Vice-chair - Div. III - CLPs)
  • Christine Shawcroft (Div. III - CLPs)
  • Pete Willsman (Div. III - CLPs)
  • Cllr Jim McMahon (Div. IV - Labour Councillors)
  • Cllr Alice Perry (Div. IV - Labour Councillors)
  • Rt Hon Dame Margaret Beckett MP (Div. V - PLP/EPLP)
  • Steve Rotheram MP (Div. V - PLP/EPLP)
  • Dennis Skinner MP (Div. V - PLP/EPLP)


Chair of the Labour Party

The chair of the party is elected by the NEC from among its own members, and holds office for a calendar year, chairing both NEC meetings and national party conferences.

The name of this post has become confused since 2001 when Labour Party leader Tony Blair appointed Charles Clarke to the courtesy position of "Party Chair" without the NEC or the national conference authorising such a position.[2] The office's name remains "chair of the party" in the Labour Party Constitution, but elsewhere the party presents the position as "Chair of the NEC".[3] Prior to 2001 the position was called "Chair of the Labour Party", and before that "Chairman of the Labour Party".

List of Chairs of the Party

(Information taken from 'British Political Facts 1900-1994', Butler & Butler 1994, PP144–5 the period down to 1993).

Chairmen of the Annual Conference of the Labour Representation Committee[4]

1900: William Charles Steadman MP
1901: John Hodge
1902: William John Davis
1903: Joseph Nicholas Bell
1904: John Hodge
1905: Arthur Henderson MP

Chairmen of the National Executive Committee of the Labour Representation Committee[5]

1900: William Charles Steadman MP
1901: Allan Gee
1902: Richard Bell MP
1903: John Hodge
1904: David J. Shackleton
1905: Arthur Henderson MP

Chairmen of the Annual Conference of the Labour Party[6]

1906: Arthur Henderson MP
1907: J. J. Stephenson
1908: Walter Hudson MP
1909: John Robert Clynes MP
1910: Keir Hardie MP
1911: William Cornforth Robinson
1912: Ben Turner
1913: George Henry Roberts MP
1914: Tom Fox
1915: No conference held
1916: William Crawford Anderson MP
1917: George Wardle MP (acting)
1917-18: W. F. Purdy
1918-19: John McGurk
1919-20: William Harold Hutchinson
1920-21: Alexander Gordon Cameron
1921-22: Fred Jowett MP
1922-23: Sidney Webb MP
1923-24: Ramsay MacDonald MP
1924-25: Charlie Cramp
1925-26: Robert Williams
1926-27: Frederick Roberts MP[7]
1927-28: George Lansbury MP
1928-29: Herbert Morrison MP
1929-30: Susan Lawrence MP
1930-31: Stanley Hirst
1931-32: George Lathan MP
1932-33: Joseph Compton
1933-34: Walter R. Smith
1934-35: William Albert Robinson
1935-36: Jennie Adamson
1936-37: Hugh Dalton MP
1937-39: George Dallas (no conference in 1938)
1939-40: Barbara Gould
1940-41: James Walker MP
1941-42: Walter Henry Green MP[8]
1942-43: Alfred Dobbs
1943-44: George Ridley MP
1944-45: Ellen Wilkinson MP
1945-46: Harold Laski
1946-47: Philip Noel-Baker MP
1947-48: Emmanuel Shinwell MP
1948-49: Jim Griffiths MP
1949-50: Sam Watson
1950-51: Alice Bacon MP
1951-52: Harry Earnshaw
1952-53: Arthur Greenwood MP
1953-54: Wilfrid Burke MP
1954-55: Edith Summerskill MP
1955-56: Edwin Gooch MP
1956-57: Margaret Herbison MP
1957-58: Tom Driberg
1958-59: Barbara Castle MP
1959-60: George Brinham
1960-61: Richard Crossman MP
1961-62: Harold Wilson MP
1962-63: Dai Davies
1963-64: Anthony Greenwood MP
1964-65: Ray Gunter MP
1965-66: Walter Padley MP
1966-67: John McFarlane Boyd
1967-68: Jennie Lee MP
1968-69: Eirene White MP
1969-70: Arthur Skeffington MP
1970-71: Ian Mikardo MP
1971-72: Tony Benn MP
1972-73: William Simpson
1973-74: James Callaghan MP
1974-75: Fred Mulley MP
1975-76: Tom Bradley MP
1976-77: John Chalmers
1977-78: Joan Lestor MP
1978-79: Frank Allaun MP
1979-80: Lena Jeger
1980-81: Alex Kitson
1981–82: Judith Hart MP
1982–83: Sam McCluskie
1983–84: Eric Heffer MP
1984–85: Alan Hadden
1985–86: Neville Hough
1986–87: Syd Tierney
1987–88: Neil Kinnock MP
1988–89: Dennis Skinner MP
1989–90: Jo Richardson MP
1990–91: Tom Sawyer
1991–92: John Evans MP
1992–93: Tony Clarke
1993–94: David Blunkett MP
1994–95: Gordon Colling
1995–96: Diana Jeuda
1996–97: Robin Cook MP
1997–98: Richard Rosser
1998–99: Brenda Etchells
1999-00: Vernon Hince
2000-01: Maggie Jones
2001-02: Margaret Wall
2002-03: Diana Holland
2003-04: Mary Turner
2004-05: Ian McCartney MP
2005-06: Jeremy Beecham
2006-07: Michael Griffiths
2007-08: Dianne Hayter
2008-09: Cath Speight
2009-10: Ann Black
2010-11: Norma Stephenson
2011-12: Michael Cashman MEP
2012-13: Harriet Yeo
2013-14: Angela Eagle MP
2014-15: Jim Kennedy
2015-16: Paddy Lillis

See also


  1. Collection Catalogues and Descriptions, People's History Museum<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. Roy Hattersley (26 July 2001). "Blair mistook his Clarke for a chair". The Guardian. Retrieved 24 May 2007.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. "NEC committees". Labour Party. Retrieved 24 May 2007.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. 'British Political Facts 1900-1994', Butler & Butler 1994, PP144-5
  5. Kevin Jefferys, Leading Labour: From Keir Hardie to Tony Blair, p.4
  6. 'British Political Facts 1900-1994', Butler & Butler 1994, pp.144-5 for the period down to 1993
  7. "Who's Who". Retrieved 2012-03-18.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. "Who's Who". Retrieved 2012-03-18.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links