Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs
Secretary of State for
Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs
Arms of Her Majesty's Government
|Foreign and Commonwealth Office|
|Style||The Right Honourable
Foreign Secretary or Name
|Member of||British Cabinet
National Security Council
Council of the European Union
|Reports to||The Prime Minister|
|Appointer||The British Monarch
on advice of the Prime Minister
|Term length||No fixed term|
|Inaugural holder||Charles James Fox|
|Formation||27 March 1782|
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Her Majesty's Principal Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (Foreign Secretary) is a senior official as one of the Great Offices of State within Her Majesty's Government and head of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. The office is a British Cabinet level position.
The Secretary of State's remit includes: relations with foreign countries, matters pertaining to the Commonwealth of Nations and the overseas territories in addition to the promotion of British interests abroad.
The position of 'Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs' was created in the British governmental reorganisation of 1782, in which the Northern and Southern Departments became the Home and Foreign Offices, respectively. The position of 'Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs' came into existence in 1968 with the merger of the functions of 'Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs' and 'Secretary of State for Commonwealth Affairs' into a single Department of State. The India Office was a predecessor department of the Foreign Office.
The Foreign Secretary is a member of the Cabinet, and the post is considered one of the Great Offices of State. The Foreign Secretary works out of the Foreign Office in Whitehall. The post's official residences are 1 Carlton Gardens in London and Chevening in Kent. In the 2006 reshuffle, Margaret Beckett became the first (and only) woman to hold the post.
The current Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs is The Right Honourable Philip Hammond MP.
List of Foreign Secretaries
(for political parties)
Secretaries of State for Foreign Affairs, 1782–1968
Secretaries of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, 1968–present
- Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs
- Permanent Under-Secretary at the Foreign Office
- Secretary of State for Commonwealth Affairs
- Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations
- Secretary of State for the Colonies
- Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs
- Foreign minister
- Great Offices of State
- "Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs". Government of the United Kingdom. Retrieved 4 September 2014.
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