Stephen Walsh (politician)

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The Right Honourable
Stephen Walsh
Stephen Walsh.gif
Secretary of State for War
In office
22 January 1924 – 3 November 1924
Monarch George V
Prime Minister Ramsay Macdonald
Preceded by The Earl of Derby
Succeeded by Sir Laming Worthington-Evans, Bt
Personal details
Born 26 August 1859 (1859-08-26)
Died 16 March 1929 (1929-03-17) (aged 69)
Nationality British
Political party Labour

Stephen Walsh PC (26 August 1859 – 16 March 1929) was a British miner, trade unionist and Labour Party politician.[1]


Born in Liverpool, Walsh became an orphan at a very young age. He was educated at an industrial school in the Kirkdale area of the city, leaving school aged 13 to work in a coalmine in Ashton in Makerfield.[1]

Political career

Walsh was an official of the Lancashire and Cheshire Miners' Federation before he was elected to parliament for Ince in the 1906 general election. Later that year he attacked the idea that an MP needed an Oxbridge education further adding that: "To use an arithmetical metaphor, the Labour party had reduced the points of difference among the working classes to the lowest common denominator, and had promoted and developed the greatest common measure of united action".[2]

Walsh was a member of David Lloyd George's Coalition Government as Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of National Service in 1917 and as Parliamentary Secretary to the Local Government Board from 1917 to 1919.

Walsh stood in the 1918 election as a Coalition Labour candidate opposed by the official Labour Party. He was Vice-President of National Union of Mineworkers from 1922 to 1924 until he was appointed Secretary of State for War by Ramsay MacDonald in January 1924, a post he held until the government fell in November of the same year. He was sworn of the Privy Council in January 1924.


One of Walsh's sons died in World War I. Walsh himself died in March 1929, aged 69.


  1. 1.0 1.1 "Obituary: Mr. Stephen Walsh. Labour War Minister". The Times. 18 March 1929. p. 19.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. The Manchester Guardian, "The Fear Of The Socialist", 17 October 1906

External links

Trade union offices
Preceded by
Herbert Smith
Vice-President of the Miners' Federation of Great Britain
Succeeded by
Thomas Richards
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Henry Blundell-Hollinshead-Blundell
Member of Parliament for Ince
Succeeded by
Gordon MacDonald
Political offices
Preceded by
New office
Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of National Service
Succeeded by
Cecil Beck
Preceded by
William Hayes Fisher
Parliamentary Secretary to the Local Government Board
Succeeded by
Hon. Waldorf Astor
Preceded by
The Earl of Derby
Secretary of State for War
Succeeded by
Sir Laming Worthington-Evans, Bt