Former British Northern Ireland secretary Mo Mowlam dies

Friday, August 19, 2005

Mo Mowlam, the former Secretary for Northern Ireland, has died at 8.10am BST (07:10 UTC) in a hospice after a fall two weeks ago. She was 55.

In a statement, prime minister Tony Blair called her "one of the shrewdest political minds I ever encountered. She was a natural politician, could read a situation and analyse and assess it as fast as anyone."

Another former cabinet minister, Clare Short, said: "She was a very beautiful young woman, she survived ill health and helped bring peace to Northern Ireland and now she's gone far too young."

Mo Mowlam was central to the negotiations leading to the Good Friday Agreement and was popular in Britain for her straightforward approach, informality and honesty.

Ms Mowlam even received a standing ovation during prime minister Blair's speech during the 1998 Labour Party Conference.

Mo Mowlam retired from political life in 2001, but continued to make the headlines by realising her autobiography which was critical of Blair's presidential style of government.

It is thought that the fall that made her go to hospital, and then the hospice where she died, was due to a lack of balance caused by a brain tumour.


  • Mo Mowlam’s Memorial is to be held at The Theatre Royal Drury Lane, London, on Sunday the 20th November 2005.