The Rt. Hon. Baroness Helene Hayman GBE PC 

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A woman sitting on a large red cushioned seat in the House of Lords.
Photograph © Anita Corbin


First Woman Lord Speaker

June 2011, The Woolsack, House of Lords, London

b.1949, Wolverhampton

After centuries of being men-only, 1958 saw a change in law that allowed women into the House of Lords. Baroness Hayman changed history when she became the first elected Lord Speaker in 2006 at the age of 57. No woman had ever served in the role of Speaker of the Lords before. Baroness Hayman had previously been the youngest member of the House of Commons and the first woman to bring her new baby into Parliament when refused maternity leave.

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