|Education:||Woodford Primary School, Llandaff Cathedral School, Cardiff, Christ College, Brecon, Selwyn College, Cambridge, College of Europe, Bruges.|
Simon Hughes is the Liberal Democrat Deputy Leader.
Simon was born in Cheshire, his family moving to Wales when he was eight and settling in Herefordshire when he was eighteen. He read Law at Selwyn College, Cambridge (1970-73), where he joined the Union of Liberal Students and later became President of his College Students' Union. After moving to London and being called to the Bar by the Inner Temple in 1974, he received a postgraduate Certificate in European Studies from the College of Europe in Bruges in 1975 where he again became President of the Student Union.
Simon has lived in Southwark since 1978 where before entering local politics he was a youth leader with the Greenhouse Trust until 1982. During that time Simon was the founding Chairman of the Burgess Park Residents' Association. For nearly ten years he was a member of Southwark Area Youth Committee, and was a Governor of Bacon's Church of England Secondary School. He is currently Chair of Governors of St. James' Primary School in Bermondsey.
Simon joined the Liberal Party in 1971 inspired by the campaigns for international justice in places such as South Africa and Palestine. He was elected to Parliament as the youngest opposition MP in the 1983 Bermondsey by-election which set a still unbeaten record for swing between two parties in any British parliamentary election (50.9%).
Simon was re-elected for the enlarged Southwark and Bermondsey constituency in 1983, 1987 and 1992. At the 1997 election the seat was enlarged again by the addition of a further ward - Newington - and renamed North Southwark and Bermondsey. Simon was again elected to represent the seat in 2001 with a significantly increased majority, and was re-elected in the 2005 general election.
Simon won the Spectator Highland Park ?Member to Watch? award in 1985, and the National Motivation Week ?Most Motivated MP? award in 1989. In 1992, he was chosen as Green MP of the Year. Simon was runner up to Charles Kennedy (with 43% of the vote) in the party's leadership election in the summer of 1999 and was the party's Shadow Home Secretary until 2003. In 2004 Simon was elected Party President with 71 per cent of the votes cast by party members. In July 2005 Simon was appointed both as Shadow Attorney General and as spokesperson on Equality issues. Simon served as Shadow Leader of the House of Commons until from 2007 until January 2009, when he was appointed Shadow Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change.
Following the resignation of Charles Kennedy as party leader in January 2006, Simon again offered himself as a candidate for the leadership, but did not win.
Simon has been a member of the Accommodation and Works Committee of the House of Commons and is a member of the Ecclesiastical Committee of Parliament. He has jointly authored booklets on human rights, the law, defence, and political realignment, and has introduced bills in parliament on Empty Property, Access to Information, to set up Parish and Community Councils in London, for Disestablishment of the Church of England, Equal Rights for War Pensioners and perhaps most famously to require the Queen to pay income tax and to change the current sexist rules of succession to the throne.
He is a patron of the Missing Persons Helpline and in 1994 became an Honorary Fellow of South Bank University. Simon is a past president of the Bristol Youth Council, Liberal Democrats against Apartheid, One World Democrats, and the Southwark Chamber of Commerce, and was for five years until 1999 the chair of the Save Guy's Hospital Campaign.
His recreations are music (everything from Church music to Eurovision), the theatre, history, sport (including supporting Wales at Rugby, Glamorgan at Cricket and Millwall and Hereford at football), the countryside and open air, travel and spending time with family and friends. His frequent ambition is to have more time to sleep.
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