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Phillip Whitehead

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Title: Phillip Whitehead  
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Subject: List of members of the European Parliament for the United Kingdom, 2004–09, Giuseppe Gargani, Constanze Krehl, Elmar Brok, Jean-Marie Le Pen
Collection: 1937 Births, 2005 Deaths, Alumni of Exeter College, Oxford, Bbc Television Producers, Deaths from Myocardial Infarction, Derbyshire Mps, Emmy Award Winners, English Atheists, English Television Producers, Labour Party (Uk) Meps, Labour Party (Uk) Mps, Members of the European Parliament for English Constituencies, Members of the Parliament of the United Kingdom for English Constituencies, Meps for the United Kingdom 1994–99, Meps for the United Kingdom 1999–2004, Meps for the United Kingdom 2004–09, People from Matlock, Derbyshire, Politics of Lincolnshire, Presidents of the Oxford Union, Uk Mps 1970–74, Uk Mps 1974, Uk Mps 1974–79, Uk Mps 1979–83
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Phillip Whitehead

Phillip Whitehead
Member of the European Parliament
for East Midlands
In office
1 May 1999 – 31 December 2005
Preceded by Position established
Succeeded by Glenis Willmott
Personal details
Born (1937-05-30)30 May 1937
Matlock Bath, Derbyshire, England
Died 31 December 2005(2005-12-31) (aged 68)
Chesterfield, Derbyshire, England
Nationality British
Political party Labour
Alma mater Exeter College, Oxford
Profession Politician, television producer and writer

Phillip Whitehead (30 May 1937 – 31 December 2005) was a British Labour politician, television producer and writer.


  • Early life 1
  • Career 2
    • House of Commons 2.1
    • Back to television 2.2
    • European Parliament 2.3
  • Death 3
  • External links 4
  • External links 5

Early life

Born in Matlock Bath, Derbyshire, he was adopted by a local family, and attended Lady Manners School in Bakewell and Exeter College at Oxford University, where he obtained his BA degree.

Whitehead went up to Oxford following in his adoptive parents' footsteps as a Conservative. He was President of the Oxford University Conservative Association and the Oxford Union in 1961. However, by the end of his time there he had convinced himself that his true place was in the Labour Party (see ref 1, from Exeter College Register).


Whitehead was an independent documentary producer in the early 1960s and later an editor with the BBC and ITV from 1967 to 1970.

House of Commons

After standing unsuccessfully at West Derbyshire in 1966, he represented Derby North as a Labour MP from 1970 to 1983, when he was defeated by the Conservative Greg Knight. He tried to win back the seat in 1987 but was beaten once again.

Whitehead was a member of several parliamentary committees:

Back to television

After his defeat at the 1983 general election, Whitehead returned to television as a producer and director. He was also author of several books derived, with the exception of his Fabian essays, from the television series he produced:

  • The Writing on the Wall
  • Dynasty: The Nehrus and the Gandhis (1997; with Jad Adams; ISBN 978-0788191237)
  • contributor to Changing States, Fabian Essays, Ruling Dimension
  • The Windsors—A Dynasty Revealed 1917–2000 (2000; with Piers Brendon: ISBN 0712667970; original 1994: ISBN 978-0340610138)
  • Stalin, a Time for Judgement

In 1988 he was MacTaggart Memorial Lecturer at the Edinburgh TV Festival.

European Parliament

He was a Labour member of the European Parliament from 1994 to his death, first serving as MEP for Staffordshire East and Derby, and later as one of the members for the East Midlands.

On 23 July 2004 he was elected chair of the Parliamentary Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection. He was also member of the European Parliament's African, Caribbean and Pacific Joint Parliamentary Assembly and chair of the European Parliamentary Labour Party.

A list of EP committees of which Whitehead was a member:

Other professional memberships held by Whitehead:


He retained a close association with Derbyshire, especially the Bakewell area, throughout his life. Whitehead was taken ill on 31 December 2005 and died later that evening in a hospital in Chesterfield from a heart attack aged 68.

External links

  • BBC News obituary
  • obituaryThe Guardian
  • obituaryThe Times

External links

  • Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by Phillip Whitehead
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Niall MacDermot
Member of Parliament for Derby North
Succeeded by
Greg Knight
Party political offices
Preceded by
Dick Leonard
Chairman of the Fabian Society
1978 – 1979
Succeeded by
Peter Archer
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